A slot is the right to operate at a particular time. It’s often used to manage traffic on an airport’s runway and in parking lots. This privilege is traded, and can be extremely valuable. In fact, one slot was sold for $75 million in 2016. A slot can be issued by an airport’s air traffic management system, such as EUROCONTROL. It’s part of their flow and capacity management role.

Modern slots are far more flexible than their mechanical counterparts. They can accommodate more symbols than ever before, and are programmed to be more flexible. For example, they don’t have to be as large as their predecessors. While vintage mechanical slots could only have a single symbol on each reel, today’s computer-powered slots can have up to 20 symbols on each reel.

The slot is an important area in the offensive zone. A high-quality shot from the slot is a rare opportunity to score a goal without deflection. With the goalie’s back turned, the winger or center can use his stick to redirect the shot. A well-placed one-timer from the slot is one of the best shots in hockey.

As the spread offense evolved, the slot receiver has taken on greater importance. He usually lines up between the offensive tackle and the widest receiver and is typically very quick and athletic. A slot receiver can be used to catch the football or to take a handoff. The slot receiver is often covered by a slot corner, which is a smaller, fast defensive back.