New Casino Gadgets Focus On Yesteryear

Some of the glitzy new games featured at the Southern Gaming Summit turn back the hands of time. For instance, how many times have you seen Popeye eat his spinach, knock out Bluto, and win Olive Oyl's heart?

The cartoon has been on TV for years. Now gamblers can enjoy Popeye's heroics at a slot machine.

"These type of themes make people feel at home," slot machine salesman Paul Lofgren says.

The latest slot machine innovations bring back memories of the cartoons we once watched, and the board games we used to play. Lofgren says themed machines are "a great attraction to a large population."

So how do casinos showcase their new themed slot machines? They use a little of Jeannie's magic. In this case, they use flashy, big screen monitors.

Craig Katt sells the LED screens used inside casinos and on their outdoor marquees. He said the screen must be state-of-the-art because "we've gotten so jaded with all the video and that type of stuff, and that's what they're looking for. They want the high quality, the instant impact stuff. And that's really what's happening out here with the market now."

The Southern Gaming Summit expo hall featured the latest high-tech gadgets. Play a slot machine, see something high tech. Put your card in an ATM machine, and get more than money. ATM accounts manager Tom Hale said his innovation "also allows you to go shopping at the same time." His technology hooks an ATM machine to the internet.

According to vendors, gaming industry executives eat up this sort of glitzy, computerized gadgetry.

An estimated 5,000 people attended the eighth annual Southern Gaming Summit.