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Best of Howard Schwartz

Gaming Guru

 

History of Slot Machines In Photos; Gaming Technology Focus Of Books

21 December 2005



Those who collect antique slot machines and who wonder at the technological changes made from Bugsy Siegel's days (1946) to today are in for a treat with the arrival of two new works at Gambler's Book Shop in Las Vegas titled Reel History (A Photographic History of Slot Machines) by David Mead (439 pages, paperbound, $39.95) and The Casino's Most Valuable Chip -- How Technology Transformed The Gaming Industry by Saverio Scheri (176 pages, hardbound, $29.95).

Reel History, written by David Mead, son the late Dan Mead of Las Vegas, is a companion the Loose Change Blue Book, a super source for all collectors, beginners or experienced. This book has been in the works for more than 20 years. It answers the need for a picture book, answering the question of who manufactured what machine and what each machine's correct name is.

The authors found machines at private homes, at collections; at trade shows and auctions. These include front and side venders, consoles, revamp fronts, jackpots and other special features.

Each machine listed and photographed contains the original manufacturer's name, date of introduction, nickname and machine type. (Those not listed are fully electronic machines, reproductions, trade stimulators, payout pinballs and one-of-a-kind machines.) This edition includes only those machines manufactured before 1980.

A short three-page index of nicknames, located at the end of the book makes it simple to find machines through that method. This would include names like Dough Boy, Dutch Boy, Man in the Moon and Two for the Money.

This is a wonderful reference and guide book, a masterful potential gift for someone who collects are plans to acquire these unique pieces of gambling paraphernalia history.

Scheri's The Casino's Most Valuable Chip is written by an industry insider with more than 20 years experience. It assists in explaining how technology helped rid the gaming industry of organized crime while allowing for the design of more exciting casino games and creating a system to reward players at the same time.

It reflects too, on how casinos learned to improve their marketing and game security.

Twelve fascinating chapters, including many illustrations, discuss the evolution of slots from spinning reels to video screens; the birth of the mega resort; the evolution of computer systems in casinos; Indian casinos and technology; casinos on the Internet; security technology today and the future of casino technology.

This is a must-read title for intelligent casino management personnel; those new to the industry; historians; those taking a course or interested in entering the industry. Beautifully illustrated and balanced with fascinating discussions of the evolution of computer intelligence and new generations of players and their ever-changing needs. It should be on the must-read list of every mid-to-top-level management decision-maker in the world.

Howard Schwartz
Howard Schwartz, the "librarian for gamblers," was the marketing director for Gambler's Book Club in Las Vegas, a position he held from 1979 to 2010, when he retired. Author of hundreds of articles on gambling, his weekly book reviews appear in numerous publications throughout the gaming industry.

Howard Schwartz Websites:

www.gamblersbook.com
Howard Schwartz
Howard Schwartz, the "librarian for gamblers," was the marketing director for Gambler's Book Club in Las Vegas, a position he held from 1979 to 2010, when he retired. Author of hundreds of articles on gambling, his weekly book reviews appear in numerous publications throughout the gaming industry.

Howard Schwartz Websites:

www.gamblersbook.com