What is a Slot?


We’ve all been there – we check in, make it through security, find our gate, struggle with the overhead lockers and settle into our seat only to be told that “We’re waiting for a slot.” But what is a slot and why can’t we take off as soon as we’re ready?

In hockey, the slot is the area where the offense has the best opportunity to score a goal without being deflected. The slot is a critical position and centers and wingers will often go to great lengths to ensure they are in this position for the majority of their shifts.

A slot is also a name for the part of a computer where you can insert expansion cards (such as an ISA, PCI or AGP). You can compare this with bays which are sites within the motherboard that accept drives.

In gambling, a slot is a specific type of machine that uses revolving mechanical reels to display and determine results. When a player places a bet, the machine either accepts cash or, in ticket-in/ticket-out machines, a paper ticket with a barcode, and then activates the reels to display symbols. The machine pays out credits based on the paytable when the symbols match a winning combination. Many slot games have a theme, and classic symbols include fruits, bars and stylized lucky sevens. The odds of winning vary between machines. A gamer can view the odds by clicking on “Paytable” or “i” on the screen of the slot they are playing.