The Domino Effect


Dominoes are small, flat tiles with numbers that can be placed edge-to-edge against each other in long lines. When a domino is set up in this way and then tipped, it causes the next domino to fall over and so on, creating much larger–and sometimes catastrophic–consequences. The phenomenon is known as the domino effect.

As a young child, Lily Hevesh enjoyed setting up dominoes in straight or curved lines and then flicking the first one to watch them tumble over. This simple game inspired Hevesh to create stunning domino art, and now she has millions of fans on her YouTube channel Hevesh5. She has even used her skills to make spectacular setups for movies and TV shows.

While Hevesh’s creations are impressive, they are not without their challenges. When a domino falls, it has a lot of potential energy that’s stored in its shape and position. This energy is transferred to the next domino when it falls, converting some of that potential energy into the kinetic energy that pushes it. The rest of the potential energy is converted to heat and sound.

Hevesh’s mind-blowing domino designs require careful planning. She starts each project with a general idea of the outcome she wants to achieve, and then she goes about constructing a track for the dominoes to follow. She considers the layout, how many dominoes will be needed for her design, and where she will place them to create the most impact when they fall. She also thinks about how she can manipulate the tracks to create an unexpected domino effect.

For example, if she has a curved line of dominoes, she can use one domino to “jump” the track by connecting it with another domino at an angle. By doing this, she can send the track in a different direction, potentially changing the entire chain reaction.

She also takes into account the laws of gravity when constructing her tracks. Hevesh says, “When you stand a domino upright, lifting against the pull of gravity, it has potential energy based on its position and its surroundings.” This energy is transferred to the next domino as it falls, converting some of the potential energy into the kinetic energy that causes the next domino to topple. This process continues down the line, resulting in a cascade of dominoes that seem to move on their own accord.

When Hevesh isn’t constructing amazing domino tracks, she’s using her skills to solve business problems. She uses a version of the engineering-design process when she works with her Domino Data Lab team on projects for clients. This includes analyzing the data, writing scripts to run data jobs, and building models on Domino. The ability to connect to a version control system, spin up interactive workspaces of various sizes and shapes, and deploy models and apps to Domino makes this end to end data science platform a powerful tool for data scientists.

As the labor shortage continues to impact businesses across America, companies like Domino’s are seeking ways to better understand their customers and their needs. For Domino’s, that means focusing on its home markets while also expanding into China, where the company hopes to grow faster than in the United States.