Computers are used extensively to simulate continuous dynamical systems. However, different conceptual and mathematical structures underlie discrete machines and continuous dynamics, so the question arises as to the ability of the computer to simulate or, more generally, to check the properties of a continuous system.
We discuss and compare two notions of stability for a continuous dynamical system, viz. shadowing and robustness, and relate them to both the practical and theoretical computability of the system. We first discuss what we can learn from the stability of a system, using a finite-precision machine. We then show, following the work in Collins (2005), that shadowing fails but robustness succeeds in ensuring the checkability of a reachability property.