July 2018
 
 
 
by Buddy Frank

Claudia Winkler has never worked in a slot or table games department. She's never been an analyst, dealer, tech or a slot manager. But we'd all nevertheless do well to listen to her advice when it comes to gaming operations.

"You can't live in a silo. You need to share with other departments. Finance may install a feature they like and not explain it to anyone else. The same with slots, marketing and IT. It's the classic 'failure to communicate,' and it really hurts the operation from top to bottom." Winkler is talking about the complicated world of slot systems, which is something she's been trying to improve for years. And she's good at what she does.

More of the most-copied features of modern-era slot machines
by Frank Legato, CDC Gaming Reports

Modern slot machines, as we noted last month, are generally the product of ingenious innovation on the part of game developers. The most ingenious of these innovations spread from the originating slot supplier to others, whether it be through licensing technology, waiting out patents or copying just enough of a feature to avoid litigation (sometimes).
 
Last month's Top 10 of copycat slot features focused on fundamentals mainly from the first 100 years of slot machine technology. However, a multitude of other hugely innovative - and much-copied - iconic slot game features have appeared since the beginning of the 21st century, in a new wave of slot inventiveness that began during the late 1990s.



If you think the Wheel of Fortune patent was one of the most important concepts in the history of slot machine design, you'd be right. But there was another idea, some years before, that was perhaps even more influential. In last month's Frank Floor Talk, Frank Legato did an excellent article called "Copy Cats" about features that are replicated by multiple manufacturers (Part Two of the article is in this issue). He included a nice summary of what's called the "Telnaes Patent," or TP. Due to its impact on our industry, I thought the topic deserved an even closer look, since it served as the cornerstone for today's proprietary battles, high hit frequencies, large payouts, and even modern Random Number Generators (RNGs).

The original patent was granted on May 15, 1984 to Norwegian mathematician Inge S. Telnaes, who was working in Reno, NV at the time. The first line of the abstract says, "A gaming machine of the type utilizing rotating reels...a brake to stop the reels at a selected position and a random number generator for selecting the reel stopping position."
 

Upcoming Industry Events of Interest
Four Seasons Hotel, Las Vegas, NV - 8/13/2018
A full-day leadership event for gaming industry professionals led by Dr. Mary C. Kelly, an author, consultant and executive coach. She will guide attendees toward strategies to better foster adaptive capacity to improve business efficiency and profits. Discover a host of ideas and practical tools for immediate use to succeed in a changing world as you apply aspects of contemporary leadership.
Luxor Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV - 9/5/2018 - 9/6/2018
The Casino eSports Conference is a two-day hands-on event that will connect the casino world directly to the eSport players, marketers, developers, products, services, event providers, lawyers, and educators. This event will provide the most direct and informative connection to facilitate the infrastructure for all gaming establishments looking to incorporate the eSport gaming world, as well as iGaming and skill-based gaming.
Hilton Olympia, Kensington, London, UK - 9/18/2018 - 9/21/2018
Betting on Sports 2018 is a must-attend event for members of the sports & betting industries, with focus on everything related to these. Delegates will be able to experience no less than 140 exhibitors, 50 conference sessions, 5 conference rooms and 10 main conference tracks over three days. Expect high quality content featuring 200 of the very best industry speakers.
Sands Expo & Convention Center, Las Vegas, NV - 10/08/2018- 10/11/2018
Set yourself up for success at Global Gaming Expo (G2E)-the largest gathering of global, commercial and tribal gaming professionals in North America. G2E has everything you need for your casino floor and across your entire operation-from traditional casino fare to sports betting, non-gaming amenities and digital products-G2E is where your business growth is accelerated.
   
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