The Surprising Technology Behind Popular Casino Games

The Surprising Technology Behind Popular Casino Games

Caption: Slot machines remain random by using RNGs

We all enjoy a spin of the roulette wheel or a quick hand of poker from time to time and online casinos make that more convenient for us. How many of us have stopped to think about the technology involved in translating the real life casino games into an online format though? Whilst some of the technology is wildly advanced, some is incredibly simple. These are some of the different bits of tech that help bring the online casino experience to life.

Slots and the Random Number Generator

Despite offering lots of choice to their customers, the most popular games at are all slot machine games. These sorts of games are incredibly popular the world over so their reputation should come as no surprise; despite this, the technology behind them is amazingly simple. Although online slots all differ in the way that winnings, bonuses and reel spins are calculated, there is one core element to them that remains unchanged: the random number generator. This piece of simple technology ensures that every person who plays the slot machine has a fair and random chance at winning or losing. The click of the mouse button or thumb tap on the screen sends a data signal to the random number generator, or RNG; this acts as the spark that sets off the RNG and ends up selecting the random number that will determine where the reel stops spinning. To really understand how RNGs work, the best way is to use one!

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Poker and Touch Screens

Caption: Touch screens bring us closer to the true casino experience

One of the most brilliant and widely adopted inventions of recent years has been the touch screen. It’s totally possible to play all sorts of games without one but being able to tap on what we wish to interact with brings us one step closer to how things work in real life. Touch screen technology is particularly popular for games where it is necessary to interact with more than one item, for example, in poker where cards and chips both need to be selected. Touch screens can work in five different ways, but the most common method is a glass screen laid in front of a very thin film of conductive material. Once the glass screen is pressed, the conductive material will connect to a circuit board behind it. This will complete an electrical circuit, allowing the screen to react in the appropriate way to the touch command. The next time you swipe those chips across the screen you might not take it for granted.

Roulette and Live Streaming

Casino companies are always looking for inventive new ways to make the gaming experience more realistic and live dealer casinos are proving a popular choice. Taking inspiration from popular live streaming platforms that show gamers navigating difficult titles in real time, live dealer casinos allow people to feel as though they’re actually at a casino without having to leave their living room. Whilst there are lots of different bits of technology at play here, from high tech video cameras to state of the art security software, we’re interested in what makes live streaming possible. The first piece of tech that is necessary is a video camera; in the case of live dealer casinos, usually more than one so that all angles can be captured. Next the video is sent to an encoder, which converts the RAW files into formats that are less data intense and can be streamed more easily. The encoded video is streamed to the Content Delivery Network, or CDN. This is a series of servers set up at strategic points all across the world. The fewer jumps between servers that a video has to make, the closer to real time it is when delivered to the viewer – pretty neat!

Ayhan Fletcher

"Subtly charming zombie nerd. Infuriatingly humble thinker. Twitter enthusiast. Hardcore web junkie."

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