Slot-Based Scheduling


If you are familiar with a slot machine, then you know that a slot is a narrow, rectangular opening. You drop a coin or other piece in the slot and get a reward if the symbol lines up on the pay table.

Slots are also used for receiving signals. They are similar to callbacks, but are slightly slower.

Slots can be accessed by any component. When called directly, slots follow normal C++ rules. But if they are invoked via a signal-slot connection, then the slots do not know if the signal they are expecting has connected to them. Consequently, a slot will report a runtime error if the expected signal is not in the signal-slot connection.

Signal-slot connections are only a small proportion of function calls. Fortunately, the slot-to-signal overhead is quite low. For system calls in slots, the overhead is only about ten times that of calling receivers directly. This is a worthwhile investment.

Slot-based scheduling can also be a useful tool to improve team performance, efficiency, and engagement. Many companies rely on this approach to organize staff and to schedule meetings. It can also be used to encourage open communication between departments. By doing so, team members can focus on critical tasks and make more efficient use of their time.

Slot-based scheduling can also be useful in health care settings. For example, it can be used to plan and schedule visits by new patients or to coordinate presentations with managers. A slot-based schedule can help teams prioritize their work and increase their awareness of deadlines.