The Lumiere Place Casino & Hotel in downtown St. Louis, Missouri had to shut down its slot machines this Wednesday morning after a software upgrade the previous night went badly, a story in the St. Louis Today reports. The slot machines were shut down from 0800 to 1130 when they were brought back on-line.
The casino reportedly brings in an average of $23,100 per hour while it is open. Wednesday morning is not a busy time so the losses were likely less than that or conversely, what could have occurred over a weekend.
An intriguing bit of the story was that IBM technicians were called in to fix the problem, which wasn't described in any detail. I may be wrong, but I don't think IBM is in the slot machine software business, so I suspect the problem had to do with some networking software connecting the slot machines themselves.
Robert N. Charette is a Contributing Editor to IEEE Spectrum and an acknowledged international authority on information technology and systems risk management. A self-described “risk ecologist,” he is interested in the intersections of business, political, technological, and societal risks. Charette is an award-winning author of multiple books and numerous articles on the subjects of risk management, project and program management, innovation, and entrepreneurship. A Life Senior Member of the IEEE, Charette was a recipient of the IEEE Computer Society’s Golden Core Award in 2008.