What is a Slot?


A slot (also known as a position) in a group, series, or sequence. It may also refer to:

A machine that pays out winning combinations of symbols on a payline in a fixed number of spins. A slot machine usually has a fixed jackpot, but can also include bonus features that improve chances of winning by increasing the payout on certain symbols. A slot machine game usually has a theme, and the symbols on the reels align with that theme.

To play a slot machine, a player inserts cash or, in “ticket-in, ticket-out” machines, a paper ticket with a barcode. A program then reads the barcode and determines the position of symbols on the reels, using an algorithm that cycles thousands of numbers each second. The machine then displays the result. The player can then press a button to spin the reels and earn credits according to the pay table. Some machines have wild symbols that can replace other symbols to form winning lines.

In computer science, a slot refers to a place in the data path machinery of a CPU, where an operation is issued and then executed. It is a concept closely related to that of an execute pipeline, used in very long instruction word (VLIW) computers.

An airport slot gives an airline the right to operate at a constrained airport at a particular time. It can be traded and can be quite valuable, as was the case for a slot sold in 2016 for $75 million. Eurocontrol has been using slot management to manage air traffic since 1996, and the practice has led to huge savings in delays and fuel burn.