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Windows XP Glitch Locks Wynn Guests Out of Rooms

By Chuckmonster on Sunday, 15th May 2005 7:32pm
  » filed under Las Vegas  comments: 1


'Doesn't live up to his potential.' Probably the worst words you could hear in a parent-teacher conference, because it implies that you'd be capable of oh-so-much more if only you'd apply yourself.

The same can be said of the ultra-hyped new hotel Wynn Las Vegas, which opened last week. I spent a night and a day there, focusing not on the casino or the world-class restaurants but on all the fabulous technology. The tech is impressive—but alas, it's not yet living up to its potential.

Resort, hotel, and casino impresario Steve Wynn spent five years and $2.7 billion to replace the old Desert Inn hotel in Las Vegas. The new Wynn Las Vegas is both opulent and beautiful, with flowers everywhere, mosaic tiles inlaid inside the floors, and an artificial pine-covered mountain and waterfall right outside. Wynn's admittedly "wildly ambitious" goal: to create "a new benchmark for the hospitality industry." And technology plays a big part in that experience.

One of the most ambitious technological advances, the red room key, includes a special number assigned just to you. It's designed to be your "passport to the property," claims Wynn's CIO, Karen Bozich. It gets you food in the restaurants, clothing and gear in the shops, and (in a scary development) it even operates the slot machines. That means no more pumping quarters into one-armed bandits. Simply slide your room key, and your winnings—and losses—are automatically tabulated to your room account.

Running on Win XP

The whole system—from guest check-in to the casino and room system—runs on Microsoft Windows XP. And because it is all interconnected, when one goes down, it can all go down. And that happened—disastrously—during the first few days. According to Wynn, the slot-machine system crashed, which also brought down the high-tech room locks. For ten long minutes, until the system came back on-line, guests were both locked out of their rooms and unable to play the slots. Glitches like these are expected in the first few weeks of a new resort, but if they continue, it could spell trouble for the high-end hotel.



Comments & Discussion:

They should use Macs. Seeing that Wynn and Encore are some of the most expensive resorts in the U.S., if not the world, they can and should upgrade to them.

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