A narrow opening in a machine or container, for example for a coin or token. Also used for an allocated space on a plane for takeoff or landing, or for a position in an airplane (pilots often get the “slot” for the front of the cockpit). A slot is usually marked by a light, but may be indicated in other ways.

The name of a slot is a reference to electromechanical slot machines’ tilt switches, which would make or break the circuit and thereby trigger an alarm when tampered with. While most modern machines no longer have tilt switches, any kind of technical fault that halts play is still called a “slot” and is commonly reported by players to the casino staff.

In the study cited in this article, researchers used several scientific instruments to measure the responses of participants as they played slots. The participants were then asked to state whether they felt a greater sense of arousal and pleasantness when the slot sounds were on, compared to when the sound was off.

The researchers also found that the players tended to overestimate the amount of their win when the sounds were on, but they were close to accurate in terms of determining whether they had won or lost by the end of their gaming session. This finding supports the idea that slot sound effects are manipulated by casino managers in order to increase player enjoyment, even when the actual house advantage has been increased.