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An application of algebra to the semantics of programming languages

Baker-Finch, C A 1985 , 'An application of algebra to the semantics of programming languages', PhD thesis, University of Tasmania.

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This dissertation investigates the use of the algebraic style of
abstract data type specifications for the definition of programming
language semantics. The choice of appropriate mathematical models for
such presentations is an important aspect of this work largely because the
semantics of programming languages will generally be defined in terms of
domains that are more complex than those required for dealing with more
elementary data types. The relationship between initial algebra semantics
and the proposed style of specification is explored.
From this foundation, the intuitive notion of the congruence of a
pair of semantic definitions can be inspected and formalised against an
algebraic background. Using the formal definition so developed and the
simple but powerful notion of initiality, proofs of congruence are possible
for semantics that are not amenable to the more traditional techniques of
structural and fixed-point induction.
Finally the problem of establishing the correctness of a compiler is
investigated, reworking the traditional "commuting square" approach for
the style of semantic presentation developed in this thesis rather than the
usual initial algebra style. This allows a clearer focus on some of the
shortcomings of the commuting square notion.

Item Type: Thesis - PhD
Authors/Creators:Baker-Finch, C A
Keywords: Programming languages (Electronic computers), Algebra, Abstract
Copyright Holders: The Author
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Copyright 1985 the Author - The University is continuing to endeavour to trace the copyright
owner(s) and in the meantime this item has been reproduced here in good faith. We
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Additional Information:

Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Tasmania, 1986. Bibliography: leaves 175-183

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