What is a Slot? A slot is a hollow on the human throat above the breastbone. Its name comes from an obscure medieval word, “slot,” from the Old French esclot, which has uncertain origins. Another synonym is “slod,” from the Old Norse slod. The word first appeared in English in the 1520s, but the modern meaning of slot (as used in casino games) dates from 1888.
The slot is also referred to as the center of the ice. In field hockey, it is the area that extends towards the blue line. The word “slot” is related to the Latin verb “sleutanus,” which means to cut or provide. In 1888, the word was used to refer to a coin. The sense “to fit something into a slot” came into being in the 1940s. This sense of slot is now obsolete.
The modern version of slot machines is programmed into computers. This makes them much more flexible. The size of the reels is not a problem anymore. Early mechanical slot machines could only display a limited number of symbols, such as five-, ten-, or seven–the odds were equal to 1/10. But modern computer-powered machines can have anywhere from twenty to hundreds of symbols on a single reel. It’s that flexible.
The Slot is a symbol of class division in Old San Francisco. The iron crack that runs down Market Street was the metaphorical dividing line for the city. Freddie Drummond was one of those individuals. He had a much more severe hatred of scabs than the average working-class man, but his aversion to scabs was greater than the average union man. He wanted to play good fellow and wastrel one more time. Luckily, he discovered his way to the slot.