real time

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See also: realtime and real-time



  • IPA(key): /ˈɹiːəl ˈtaɪm/, /ˈɹiːl ˈtaɪm/
  • Hyphenation: real time


real time (uncountable)

  1. (computing) The duration required by a computer system to complete a particular task.
  2. The time during which an event or process occurs (and during which, without much delay, it is responded to, reacted to, etc).
    • 2009, John C. Conyers, Reining in the Imperial Presidency: Lessons and Recommendations Relating to the Presidency of George W. Bush, Skyhorse Publishing Inc. (→ISBN), page 158:
      "It's intelligence in real time, but you have to know where you're looking and what you're after." Government sources told The Washington Post that the program had had little discernible impact on the government's ability to prevent terrorist [attacks].
    • 2016, Jerry C. Whitaker, The SBE Broadcast Engineering Handbook: A Hands-on Guide to Station Design and Maintenance, McGraw Hill Professional (→ISBN), page 11:
      Additional data services, such as album art, artist information and advertising logos, interactive user functions, as well as weather and traffic updates in real time [exist].
  3. Used other than figuratively or idiomatically: see real,‎ time.

Derived terms[edit]