Because it always halts, the machine is able to decide whether a given string is a member of a formal language. The class of languages which can be decided by such machines is exactly the set of recursive languages. However, due to the Halting Problem, determining whether an arbitrary Turing machine halts on an arbitrary input is itself an undecidable decision problem.

deinonychus commented on the word machine that always halts

In computability theory, a machine that always halts—also called a decider (Sipser, 1996) or a total Turing machine (Kozen, 1997)—is a Turing machine that halts for every input.

Because it always halts, the machine is able to decide whether a given string is a member of a formal language. The class of languages which can be decided by such machines is exactly the set of recursive languages. However, due to the Halting Problem, determining whether an arbitrary Turing machine halts on an arbitrary input is itself an undecidable decision problem.

(Wikipedia)

February 12, 2012