Here's something that has puzzled me lately, and perhaps someone can explain what I'm missing.
Problems in NP are those that can be solved on a NDTM in polynomial time. Now assuming P$\,\neq\,$NP, PSPACE$\,\neq\,$NP etc. this means that there are NP-complete problems that cannot be solved in polynomial time on a DTM. Which means that either they have some complexity that lies between polynomial and exponential (which I am not sure what that might be) or they must take exponential time on a DTM (and no more than polynomial space). If its the latter, then consider the PSPACE-complete problems. A problem is in PSPACE if it can be solved using a polynomial amount of space. Since NP$\,\subseteq\,$PSPACE$\,\subseteq\,$EXPTIME, PSPACE-complete problems must also take exponential time on a DTM. Then what is the practical difference between NP-complete and PSPACE-complete problems?