I was recently asked about "dirty reads." This term refers to setting an application's SELECT statement to avoid taking locks while reading and processing uncommitted data.
Of course, the benefit of doing this is to reduce CPU costs and reap potentially significant savings. As the name implies, however, dirty reads comes with a risk. It can lead to failed transactions due to discrepancies in the data. So before implementing dirty reads, you must understand how your data is being used and if discrepancies can be tolerated.