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A code is said to be error-detecting if any one error in a codeword results in a word that is not a codeword, so that the receiver knows that an error has occurred. A code is error-correcting if, when any one error occurs in a codeword, it is possible to decide which codeword was intended. Certain error-correcting codes may not be able to detect errors if more than one error occurs in a codeword; other error-correcting codes can be constructed that can detect and correct more than one error in a codeword. See also distance between two codewords.

Subjects: Computing.

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