Slotomania or the phenomenon of playing slot machines on autopilot, has been viewed as a socially unacceptable practice for the past decade. It’s been banned in several countries, and casinos have responded with the development of electronic slot machines that require users to actually make a gambling decision.
The rapid increase in consumer demand for more convenient gaming, coupled with the rise of the internet and broadband connectivity, has presented casinos with an opportunity to revolutionize their modern casino design. Today, the vast majority of casinos use electronic slot machines. As a result, the role of slotomania has been largely relegated to the history books.
Casinos started to change the way they did business in response to the belief that the rise of slotomania was beginning to compromise the safety of their customers. Because the machines could be programmed to automatically choose the winning numbers, casinos became far more cautious when offering gambling. Even in the early days of slotomania, casinos had to devise “technological” methods of thwarting the practice of slotomania.
One popular casino industry player was Justin Leffler, an electrical engineer from California. Using high-speed video cameras to record the play of slot machines, Leffler became convinced that he could detect people’s fixation on slot machines by watching the patterns of the video tape. In turn, he developed an algorithm that was able to find and identify patterns in video tapes – exactly what he was looking for.
Leffler eventually patented his algorithm and began distributing his findings through the scientific community. Eventually, computer scientists and mathematicians started to recognize the importance of the algorithm and began to use it to break the codes used to decode video tapes. And soon after that, Leffler’s video algorithm had been applied to casino games in casinos.
Nowadays, most modern casinos use special software packages to automatically set the winning combinations of a machine. In addition, they will often ask a patron to select the numbers they want in advance in order to achieve an optimal machine setting. This prevents the randomization of the numbers by slotmaniacs, as they cannot predict which number will be drawn.
While it is true that there are no statistics available to prove the effectiveness of this approach, the practice of automatic slot machine selection is widely recognized in the gambling industry. This recognition is the primary reason why many casinos have moved away from the practice of slotomania. In fact, some casinos are implementing a policy of automatic selection as a means of determining the winning combination of the slot machines in their casino.
Though there are no concrete figures to show the effectiveness of the practice, slot machine manufacturers claim that it has helped them reduce losses by several percent. Other casinos believe that slot machines are now so predictable that the practice of slotmaniacs has become almost non-existent.