real time


General English

General Science

  • adjective
    (written as real-time)
    referring to something that happens at the same time as something else, e.g. the processing of data as soon as they are received
  • noun the processing of data as soon as they are received


  • noun the time when a computer is working on the processing of data while the event to which the data refers is actually taking place


  • noun the instant nature of the responses of some computer system to events, changes, and other stimuli


  • (written as real-time)
    That which occurs instantaneously, or so quickly that processing, entering, adaptation, or any other response is least as fast as a triggering event or circumstance. Said especially when the process being responded to is characterized by continuous activity, change, or varying parameters. For instance, a real-time control system, or an event-management system.
  • (written as real-time)
    In computers, that which is processed, or otherwise acted upon, without any delay. Examples include real-time transaction processing and the computation of a discrete Fourier transform.
  • (written as real-time)
    In communications, that which occurs without a discernable delay. For instance, telephonic voice conversations, real-time chats, or real-time broadcasts.


  • A description of something that is currently occurring. Due to the risks involved in trading based on delayed information, many forex traders find that having a real time source of news headlines and currency pair quotes for technical analysis and trade timing are essential to the success of their currency trading business.

Media Studies

  • noun the recreation of an event in a piece of film or audio in exactly the same period of time that it would take for the same event to unfold in the real world. The drama series ‘24’ is filmed entirely using this device.