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Computability and recursion
 BULL. SYMBOLIC LOGIC
, 1996
"... We consider the informal concept of “computability” or “effective calculability” and two of the formalisms commonly used to define it, “(Turing) computability” and “(general) recursiveness.” We consider their origin, exact technical definition, concepts, history, general English meanings, how they b ..."
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We consider the informal concept of “computability” or “effective calculability” and two of the formalisms commonly used to define it, “(Turing) computability” and “(general) recursiveness.” We consider their origin, exact technical definition, concepts, history, general English meanings, how they became fixed in their present roles, how they were first and are now used, their impact on nonspecialists, how their use will affect the future content of the subject of computability theory, and its connection to other related areas. After a careful historical and conceptual analysis of computability and recursion we make several recommendations in section §7 about preserving the intensional differences between the concepts of “computability” and “recursion.” Specifically we recommend that: the term “recursive ” should no longer carry the additional meaning of “computable” or “decidable;” functions defined using Turing machines, register machines, or their variants should be called “computable” rather than “recursive;” we should distinguish the intensional difference between Church’s Thesis and Turing’s Thesis, and use the latter particularly in dealing with mechanistic questions; the name of the subject should be “Computability Theory” or simply Computability rather than
Relational Reasoning about Functions and Nondeterminism
, 1998
"... Reproduction of all or part of this work is permitted for educational or research use on condition that this copyright notice is included in any copy. See back inner page for a list of recent BRICS Dissertation Series publications. Copies may be obtained by contacting: BRICS ..."
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Cited by 31 (4 self)
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Reproduction of all or part of this work is permitted for educational or research use on condition that this copyright notice is included in any copy. See back inner page for a list of recent BRICS Dissertation Series publications. Copies may be obtained by contacting: BRICS
Algorithms for ordinal arithmetic
 In 19th International Conference on Automated Deduction (CADE
, 2003
"... Abstract. Proofs of termination are essential for establishing the correct behavior of computing systems. There are various ways of establishing termination, but the most general involves the use of ordinals. An example of a theorem proving system in which ordinals are used to prove termination is A ..."
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Cited by 11 (5 self)
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Abstract. Proofs of termination are essential for establishing the correct behavior of computing systems. There are various ways of establishing termination, but the most general involves the use of ordinals. An example of a theorem proving system in which ordinals are used to prove termination is ACL2. In ACL2, every function defined must be shown to terminate using the ordinals up to ɛ0. We use a compact notation for the ordinals up to ɛ0 (exponentially more succinct than the one used by ACL2) and define efficient algorithms for ordinal addition, subtraction, multiplication, and exponentiation. In this paper we describe our notation and algorithms, prove their correctness, and analyze their complexity. 1
Step By Recursive Step: Church's Analysis Of Effective Calculability
 BULLETIN OF SYMBOLIC LOGIC
, 1997
"... Alonzo Church's mathematical work on computability and undecidability is wellknown indeed, and we seem to have an excellent understanding of the context in which it arose. The approach Church took to the underlying conceptual issues, by contrast, is less well understood. Why, for example, was "Ch ..."
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Alonzo Church's mathematical work on computability and undecidability is wellknown indeed, and we seem to have an excellent understanding of the context in which it arose. The approach Church took to the underlying conceptual issues, by contrast, is less well understood. Why, for example, was "Church's Thesis" put forward publicly only in April 1935, when it had been formulated already in February/March 1934? Why did Church choose to formulate it then in terms of G odel's general recursiveness, not his own #definability as he had done in 1934? A number of letters were exchanged between Church and Paul Bernays during the period from December 1934 to August 1937; they throw light on critical developments in Princeton during that period and reveal novel aspects of Church's distinctive contribution to the analysis of the informal notion of e#ective calculability. In particular, they allow me to give informed, though still tentative answers to the questions I raised; the char...
Ordinal arithmetic in ACL2
 In ACL2 Workshop 2003
, 2003
"... Abstract. Ordinals form the basis for termination proofs in ACL2. Currently, ACL2 uses a rather inefficient representation for the ordinals up to ɛ0 and provides limited support for reasoning about them. We present algorithms for ordinal arithmetic on an exponentially more compact representation tha ..."
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Abstract. Ordinals form the basis for termination proofs in ACL2. Currently, ACL2 uses a rather inefficient representation for the ordinals up to ɛ0 and provides limited support for reasoning about them. We present algorithms for ordinal arithmetic on an exponentially more compact representation than the one used by ACL2. The algorithms have been implemented and numerous properties of the arithmetic operators have been mechanically verified, thereby greatly extending ACL2’s ability to reason about the ordinals. We describe how to use the libraries containing these results, which are currently distributed with ACL2 version 2.7. 1
Efficient execution in an automated reasoning environment
 Journal of Functional Programming
, 2006
"... Abstract We describe a method to permit the user of a mathematical logic to write elegant logical definitions while allowing sound and efficient execution. We focus on the ACL2 logic and automated reasoning environment. ACL2 is used by industrial researchers to describe microprocessor designs and ot ..."
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Cited by 8 (4 self)
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Abstract We describe a method to permit the user of a mathematical logic to write elegant logical definitions while allowing sound and efficient execution. We focus on the ACL2 logic and automated reasoning environment. ACL2 is used by industrial researchers to describe microprocessor designs and other complicated digital systems. Properties of the designs can be formally established with the theorem prover. But because ACL2 is also a functional programming language, the formal models can be executed as simulation engines. We implement features that afford these dual applications, namely formal proof and execution on industrial test suites. In particular, the features allow the user to install, in a logically sound way, alternative executable counterparts for logicallydefined functions. These alternatives are often much more efficient than the logically equivalent terms they replace. We discuss several applications of these features. 1 Introduction This paper is about a way to permit the functional programmer to prove efficientprograms correct. The idea is to allow the provision of two definitions of the program: an elegant definition that supports effective reasoning by a mechanizedtheorem prover, and an efficient definition for evaluation. A bridge of this sort,
Ordinal arithmetic: Algorithms and mechanization
 Journal of Automated Reasoning
, 2006
"... Abstract. Termination proofs are of critical importance for establishing the correct behavior of both transformational and reactive computing systems. A general setting for establishing termination proofs involves the use of the ordinal numbers, an extension of the natural numbers into the transfini ..."
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Cited by 5 (3 self)
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Abstract. Termination proofs are of critical importance for establishing the correct behavior of both transformational and reactive computing systems. A general setting for establishing termination proofs involves the use of the ordinal numbers, an extension of the natural numbers into the transfinite which were introduced by Cantor in the nineteenth century and are at the core of modern set theory. We present the first comprehensive treatment of ordinal arithmetic on compact ordinal notations and give efficient algorithms for various operations, including addition, subtraction, multiplication, and exponentiation. Using the ACL2 theorem proving system, we implemented our ordinal arithmetic algorithms, mechanically verified their correctness, and developed a library of theorems that can be used to significantly automate reasoning involving the ordinals. To enable users of the ACL2 system to fully utilize our work required that we modify ACL2, e.g., we replaced the underlying representation of the ordinals and added a large library of definitions and theorems. Our modifications are available starting with ACL2 version 2.8. 1.
The history and concept of computability
 in Handbook of Computability Theory
, 1999
"... We consider the informal concept of a “computable ” or “effectively calculable” function on natural numbers and two of the formalisms used to define it, computability” and “(general) recursiveness. ” We consider their origin, exact technical definition, concepts, history, how they became fixed in th ..."
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Cited by 5 (1 self)
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We consider the informal concept of a “computable ” or “effectively calculable” function on natural numbers and two of the formalisms used to define it, computability” and “(general) recursiveness. ” We consider their origin, exact technical definition, concepts, history, how they became fixed in their present roles, and how
Gödel on computability
"... Around 1950, both Gödel and Turing wrote papers for broader audiences. 1 Gödel drew in his 1951 dramatic philosophical conclusions from the general formulation of his second incompleteness theorem. These conclusions concerned the nature of mathematics and the human mind. The general formulation of t ..."
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Around 1950, both Gödel and Turing wrote papers for broader audiences. 1 Gödel drew in his 1951 dramatic philosophical conclusions from the general formulation of his second incompleteness theorem. These conclusions concerned the nature of mathematics and the human mind. The general formulation of the second theorem was explicitly based on Turing’s 1936 reduction of finite procedures to machine computations. Turing gave in his 1954 an understated analysis of finite procedures in terms of Post production systems. This analysis, prima facie quite different from that given in 1936, served as the basis for an exposition of various unsolvable problems. Turing had addressed issues of mentality and intelligence in contemporaneous essays, the best known of which is of course Computing machinery and intelligence. Gödel’s and Turing’s considerations from this period intersect through their attempt, on the one hand, to analyze finite, mechanical procedures and, on the other hand, to approach mental phenomena in a scientific way. Neuroscience or brain science was an important component of the latter for both: Gödel’s remarks in the Gibbs Lecture as well as in his later conversations with Wang and Turing’s Intelligent Machinery can serve as clear evidence for that. 2 Both men were convinced that some mental processes are not mechanical, in the sense that Turing machines cannot mimic them. For Gödel, such processes were to be found in mathematical experience and he was led to the conclusion that mind is separate from matter. Turing simply noted that for a machine or a brain it is not enough to be converted into a universal (Turing) machine in order to become intelligent: “discipline”, the characteristic