Slots and Slot-Based Scheduling


A slot is a narrow opening or gap, especially one formed by cutting or machining. A slot can also refer to a position on a device, particularly a computer, where software programs control the machine’s behavior.

The term “slot” may also refer to a gaming device where players drop coins or paper tickets into a slot, causing it to spin and display numbers. These machines were popular throughout the United States during the 1920s, until they became less common with the onset of prohibition and legal restrictions on gambling. Today, slots are typically found in casinos and other places where people wish to gamble.

In hockey, the low slot is a position on the ice where the shooter has a direct view of the net. The center or winger shooting from the slot can take advantage of this straight-on view of the goal to make accurate wrist shots and avoid deflections by defenders. In addition, the center or winger can also utilize the slot to shield a defender from making a play for the puck, creating an offensive advantage.

In business, slot-based scheduling is a method of organizing and planning work to support deadlines and productivity. Often, companies use slot-based schedules to establish priorities among various projects with different due dates. For example, a health care provider might use slot-based schedules to set appointments with patients and organize urgent and routine consultations. Having clear priority assignments can help staff stay focused and meet important objectives.