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Real-time systems are defined as those systems in which the correctness of the system depends not only on the logical result of computations, but also on the time at which the results are produced. Real-time computing systems are widely used in many industrial applications. Examples of application domains that require real-time computing include: Control of engines, Chemical and nuclear plant control, Traffic, Time-critical packet communications, Flight control systems, Military systems, Space missions, Virtual reality, Railway switching systems, and Robotics.A major misconception about real-time systems is to think that they are equivalent to fast systems. Of course, minimizing the computation duration is helpful in satisfying the timing constraints, but it is not enough to meet all hard timing constraints. Instead of ensuring fast computation, in real-time systems we are concerned with a most important principle, called the predictability, i.e., the ability to predict, a priori, whether the system can meet all hard (also termed critical) timing requirements.
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