Toys

What Shape is the Message-Bearing Die Inside a Magic 8-Ball? (And Other Weird Facts About Magic)

The Magic 8-Ball is a surprisingly sophisticated invention that is also a fun and an easy way of fortune telling. It was invented by a man called Albert Carter in 1950 and since then has always been in production. Carter was the son of a Cincinnati clairvoyant and invented the ball to provide psychic answers to simple Yes/No questions by way of a die which sits inside the ball.

4 General Questions About the Magic-8 Ball

So what shape is the message-bearing die inside a Magic 8-Ball?

Many people wonder what shape is the message bearing die inside a Magic-8 Ball. The simple answer is that it is an icosahedron – a polyhedron shape with 20 sides.

How do you use the Magic-8 Ball?

To use the Magic 8-Ball, you shake the ball and ask your question, and the answer is revealed as if by magic, appearing at the top of the ball and read through the plastic window.

How many answers can the Magic-8 Ball provide?

There are 20 possible answers provided by a Magic-8 Ball. Ten of these are positive and answers include, “It is certain,” “Yes,” or “You may rely on it.” There are five non-committal answers such as “Concentrate and ask again” or “Cannot predict this now.” The remaining five answers are negative, such as “Don’t count” on it or “Very doubtful.” Key to the way that the Magic-8 Ball answers at random is the fact that there are 20 potential answers.

If you want to try the Magic-8 Ball for yourself, you can still buy it via the Mattel website where the company manufactures a couple different models. Despite changes to design, the basic model remains the same.

Does the Magic-8 Ball unlock psychic powers?

Many people believe that the Magic-8 Ball has genuine psychic powers and that when you ask a question you will get a genuine answer. In fact, the Magic-8 Ball works in a similar way as any other divination tool from the Tarot cards to reading tea leaves.

The key to using all these so called magic tools is the ability to ask the right questions that leave the meaning open to interpretation.  Because the Magic-8 Ball only responds to simple Yes/No questions, such as “Will I find true love,” or “Should we order a pizza,” it is pretty basic but essentially all fortune telling relies on you interpreting the answer.

So, for example if you ask the Magic-8 Ball if you will meet a tall dark handsome stranger, and the within the next few hours you have a conversation with a dark haired delivery driver, you will believe the Magic 8-Ball is right!

Magic Can Sometimes Come True!

A weird fact about magic like this is that it can come true sometimes. The Magic-8 Ball may just be a clever trick based on what shape the message-bearing die inside a magic-8 ball actually is. But with 20 potential answers and your own list of unlimited questions, the answers can often feel spookily correct. 

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