race condition

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race condition (plural race conditions)

  1. (electronics, computing) A flaw in a system or process whereby the output or result is unexpectedly and critically dependent on the sequence or timing of other events.
    A race condition in writing my guest book file meant that the last person to sign wiped out all previous signatures.
    • 2004, W. Richard Stevens; Bill Fenner; Andrew M. Rudoff, UNIX Network Programming: The sockets networking API, Addison-Wesley Professional, →ISBN, page 538:
      A race condition is usually when multiple processes are accessing data that is shared among them, but the correct outcome depends on the execution order of the processes.


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