Editors

David G. Schwartz

Document Type

Occasional Paper

Publication Date

2-2012

Publication Title

Center for Gaming Research Occasional Paper Series: Paper 14

Publisher Location

Las Vegas, Nevada

First page number:

1

Last page number:

26

Abstract

This paper examines how the casino industry was transformed by slot technology between 1950 and 1990. The criminalization of slot machines in the 1950s led to their massive evacuation into Las Vegas casinos. In this concentrated environment, slot machines revealed to casino operators an automated surveillance technology that could disassemble the player into streams of virtual data, not through any overt means, but through the very activity of play itself. Slot managers and gaming technologists found themselves empowered professionally as they experimented with ways to transform data into profits. From the 1970s to the 90s, this technological development effectively linked up every economic activity in various casinos across the US, creating a virtual network that defeated the geographical injunctions designed to segregate gambling from other spheres of life.

Keywords

Casino gaming; Casinos; Gambling; Gambling industry; Nevada – Las Vegas; Slot machines – History; Slot machines – Technological innovations; Slot technology; Techno-politics; Virtualization

Disciplines

Gaming and Casino Operations Management | Growth and Development | Technology and Innovation

Language

English


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