The term “slot” is derived from the late 14c. word for “hollow” located at the base of the throat, above the breastbone. It is derived from the Old French esclot, which has no definitive meaning. The word “slot” is also related to Old Norse slod, and the meaning “slot” in the sense of slot machine first appeared in the 1880s. Historically, slots were used to indicate a hollow in a throat, but the word was used in a broader sense for a chest cavity.
While slot machines often feature different symbols, they all share some basic characteristics. Most slots use a pay table, which lists the credits a player earns when matching symbols. This information is usually printed on the face of the machine, although older machines may have a pay table above and below the wheels. Video slot machines, on the other hand, have a help menu where you can find the pay table. The pay table will tell you what symbols have the best odds of paying off and how much each symbol will pay out.
In addition to the built-in types, you can define custom slots. You can map any numeric or duration value to a specific slot. Ordinal numbers are not supported. You can also define your own slot types, such as “location” or “number.”