Substitution failure is not an error (SFINAE) refers to a situation in C++ where an invalid substitution of template parameters is not in itself an error. David Vandevoorde first introduced the acronym SFINAE to describe related programming techniques.
Specifically, when creating a candidate set for overload resolution, some (or all) candidates of that set may be the result of instantiated templates with (potentially deduced) template arguments substituted for the corresponding template parameters. If an error occurs during the substitution of a set of arguments for any given template, the compiler removes the potential overload from the candidate set instead of stopping with a compilation error, provided the substitution error is one the C++ standard grants such treatment. If one or more candidates remain and overload resolution succeeds, the invocation is well-formed.