What is a Slot?


If you’re not familiar with the word, it means a hollow space in a construction, as in a hollowed out slot machine. The word slot actually comes from late 14c., and is derived from Old French esclot, though its exact origin is obscure. It is also a variant of the Old Norse word slod. The word slot was first used as a noun in the 1520s, but its modern meaning dates from 1888.

The word slot is a noun, from 1747, which means “to cut a slot in,” or “to provide a slot in something.” In 1888, the word gained a new sense that means “to drop a coin into.” In the 1960s, it came to mean “to take a position within a slot,” and then ‘to fit something into a slot.’ This oldest meaning is now obsolete. The term slot is often used in hockey to refer to the area between the face-off circles, also known as the scoring area.

The pay table of a slot machine is the list of credits a player will receive if three or more symbols line up. Some symbols will represent a multitude of others, making it impossible to win by simply lining them up. In fact, many slot machines pay a smaller amount than the minimum payout on consecutive pulls, but that’s because the machines rarely fail to meet the minimum payout over several pulls. In other words, a machine is “tilted” if the player is not seated properly.

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