infant mortality

Computing Dictionary

infant mortality definition

hardware
It is common lore among hackers (and in the electronics industry at large) that the chances of sudden hardware failure drop off exponentially with a machine's time since first use (that is, until the relatively distant time at which enough mechanical wear in I/O devices and thermal-cycling stress in components has accumulated for the machine to start going senile). Up to half of all chip and wire failures happen within a new system's first few weeks; such failures are often referred to as "infant mortality" problems (or, occasionally, as "sudden infant death syndrome").
See bathtub curve, burn-in period.
[Jargon File]
(1995-03-20)

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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