You did know a slot machine if you saw it, right?
Slot machines have big flashing lights at the top. They make a lot of noise. They make a lot of noise. They have a certain shape of case covered in boldly-painted letters, symbols, and numbers. They use spinning reels. They are big, noisy, mechanical things that promise big riches for small wagers. You are right, of course. That does sound like a slot machine. But technology has brought these games a long way from the one-armed bandits of the American frontier. To understand what a slot machine is, we should start with a generic definition.
Traditionally, slot machines were coin-operated, and the player pulled a lever to activate three spinning reels, with coins dropping out into a hopper after wins. That’s changed over time. Now, the phrase slot machine includes games that don’t use a lever or accept coins at all. Forget the old-school hopper – these days, prizes are generated electronically, like the wagers themselves.