In a world where you can quite literally tell Alexa to switch your lights on, Glithero’s Domino Lamp sure seems impractical, but that’s by design. The idea is to explore an interaction that’s unconventional and fun both at the same time, while highlighting the simple technical process of switching on a light by completing an electric circuit.
“With so much technology in our lives it is easy to take for granted that even simple things such as turning on a light are made possible by the physical properties of materials,” said Glithero co-founder Tim Simpson. The Domino Lamp, designed for an exhibition at the Design Museum in London, titled ‘Reconsidering Canon’.
Switching on the lamp is physically elaborate, but theoretically simple. The Domino Lamp comes with multiple copper dominos stacked inside it. Take them out and arrange them from one end of the lamp to the other end, either in a circle or any shape of your choosing. Tip over the ‘rocker’ or the starting domino, and as the subsequent dominos topple over, they remain in contact, forming a circuit that goes all the way to the ‘receiver’ or the last domino. When this circuit is complete, the Edison bulb at the top of the Domino Lamp lights up instantaneously, to prove that the circuit is complete, and also to be a symbolic reward of having taken part in the activity of setting up (and toppling over) those dominos!