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The complexity of analog computation
 in Math. and Computers in Simulation 28(1986
"... We ask if analog computers can solve NPcomplete problems efficiently. Regarding this as unlikely, we formulate a strong version of Church’s Thesis: that any analog computer can be simulated efficiently (in polynomial time) by a digital computer. From this assumption and the assumption that P ≠ NP w ..."
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Cited by 36 (0 self)
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We ask if analog computers can solve NPcomplete problems efficiently. Regarding this as unlikely, we formulate a strong version of Church’s Thesis: that any analog computer can be simulated efficiently (in polynomial time) by a digital computer. From this assumption and the assumption that P ≠ NP we can draw conclusions about the operation of physical devices used for computation. An NPcomplete problem, 3SAT, is reduced to the problem of checking whether a feasible point is a local optimum of an optimization problem. A mechanical device is proposed for the solution of this problem. It encodes variables as shaft angles and uses gears and smooth cams. If we grant Strong Church’s Thesis, that P ≠ NP, and a certain ‘‘Downhill Principle’ ’ governing the physical behavior of the machine, we conclude that it cannot operate successfully while using only polynomial resources. We next prove Strong Church’s Thesis for a class of analog computers described by wellbehaved ordinary differential equations, which we can take as representing part of classical mechanics. We conclude with a comment on the recently discovered connection between spin glasses and combinatorial optimization. 1.
Analog computers and recursive functions over the reals
 Journal of Complexity
, 2003
"... In this paper we show that Shannon’s General Purpose Analog Computer (GPAC) is equivalent to a particular class of recursive functions over the reals with the flavour of Kleene’s classical recursive function theory. We first consider the GPAC and several of its extensions to show that all these mode ..."
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Cited by 34 (19 self)
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In this paper we show that Shannon’s General Purpose Analog Computer (GPAC) is equivalent to a particular class of recursive functions over the reals with the flavour of Kleene’s classical recursive function theory. We first consider the GPAC and several of its extensions to show that all these models have drawbacks and we introduce an alternative continuoustime model of computation that solve these problems. We also show that this new model preserve all the significant relations involving the previous models (namely, the equivalence with the differentially algebraic functions). We then continue with the topic of recursive functions over the reals, and we show full connections between functions generated by the model introduced so far and a particular class of recursive functions over the reals. 1
Beyond The Universal Turing Machine
, 1998
"... We describe an emerging field, that of nonclassical computability and nonclassical computing machinery. According to the nonclassicist, the set of welldefined computations is not exhausted by the computations that can be carried out by a Turing machine. We provide an overview of the field and a phi ..."
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Cited by 31 (1 self)
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We describe an emerging field, that of nonclassical computability and nonclassical computing machinery. According to the nonclassicist, the set of welldefined computations is not exhausted by the computations that can be carried out by a Turing machine. We provide an overview of the field and a philosophical defence of its foundations.
Iteration, Inequalities, and Differentiability in Analog Computers
, 1999
"... Shannon's General Purpose Analog Computer (GPAC) is an elegant model of analog computation in continuous time. In this paper, we consider whether the set G of GPACcomputable functions is closed under iteration, that is, whether for any function f(x) 2 G there is a function F (x; t) 2 G such t ..."
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Cited by 29 (15 self)
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Shannon's General Purpose Analog Computer (GPAC) is an elegant model of analog computation in continuous time. In this paper, we consider whether the set G of GPACcomputable functions is closed under iteration, that is, whether for any function f(x) 2 G there is a function F (x; t) 2 G such that F (x; t) = f t (x) for nonnegative integers t. We show that G is not closed under iteration, but a simple extension of it is. In particular, if we relax the definition of the GPAC slightly to include unique solutions to boundary value problems, or equivalently if we allow functions x k (x) that sense inequalities in a dierentiable way, the resulting class, which we call G + k , is closed under iteration. Furthermore, G + k includes all primitive recursive functions, and has the additional closure property that if T (x) is in G+k , then any function of x computable by a Turing machine in T (x) time is also.
A Survey of ContinuousTime Computation Theory
 Advances in Algorithms, Languages, and Complexity
, 1997
"... Motivated partly by the resurgence of neural computation research, and partly by advances in device technology, there has been a recent increase of interest in analog, continuoustime computation. However, while specialcase algorithms and devices are being developed, relatively little work exists o ..."
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Cited by 29 (6 self)
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Motivated partly by the resurgence of neural computation research, and partly by advances in device technology, there has been a recent increase of interest in analog, continuoustime computation. However, while specialcase algorithms and devices are being developed, relatively little work exists on the general theory of continuoustime models of computation. In this paper, we survey the existing models and results in this area, and point to some of the open research questions. 1 Introduction After a long period of oblivion, interest in analog computation is again on the rise. The immediate cause for this new wave of activity is surely the success of the neural networks "revolution", which has provided hardware designers with several new numerically based, computationally interesting models that are structurally sufficiently simple to be implemented directly in silicon. (For designs and actual implementations of neural models in VLSI, see e.g. [30, 45]). However, the more fundamental...
An analog characterization of the Grzegorczyk hierarchy
 Journal of Complexity
, 2002
"... We study a restricted version of Shannon's General . . . ..."
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Cited by 29 (15 self)
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We study a restricted version of Shannon's General . . .
Polynomial differential equations compute all real computable functions on computable compact intervals
, 2007
"... ..."
Analog Computation with Dynamical Systems
 Physica D
, 1997
"... This paper presents a theory that enables to interpret natural processes as special purpose analog computers. Since physical systems are naturally described in continuous time, a definition of computational complexity for continuous time systems is required. In analogy with the classical discrete th ..."
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Cited by 21 (0 self)
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This paper presents a theory that enables to interpret natural processes as special purpose analog computers. Since physical systems are naturally described in continuous time, a definition of computational complexity for continuous time systems is required. In analogy with the classical discrete theory we develop fundamentals of computational complexity for dynamical systems, discrete or continuous in time, on the basis of an intrinsic time scale of the system. Dissipative dynamical systems are classified into the computational complexity classes P d , CoRP d , NP d
Computability with Polynomial Differential Equations
, 2007
"... In this paper, we show that there are Initial Value Problems defined with polynomial ordinary differential equations that can simulate universal Turing machines in the presence of bounded noise. The polynomial ODE defining the IVP is explicitly obtained and the simulation is performed in real time. ..."
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Cited by 20 (13 self)
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In this paper, we show that there are Initial Value Problems defined with polynomial ordinary differential equations that can simulate universal Turing machines in the presence of bounded noise. The polynomial ODE defining the IVP is explicitly obtained and the simulation is performed in real time.
Some recent developments on Shannon’s general purpose analog computer
 Mathematical Logic Quarterly
"... This paper revisits one of the first models of analog computation, the General Purpose Analog Computer (GPAC). In particular, we restrict our attention to the improved model presented in [11] and we show that it can be further refined. With this we prove the following: (i) the previous model can be ..."
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Cited by 18 (7 self)
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This paper revisits one of the first models of analog computation, the General Purpose Analog Computer (GPAC). In particular, we restrict our attention to the improved model presented in [11] and we show that it can be further refined. With this we prove the following: (i) the previous model can be simplified; (ii) it admits extensions having close connections with the class of smooth continuous time dynamical systems. As a consequence, we conclude that some of these extensions achieve Turing universality. Finally, it is shown that if we introduce a new notion of computability for the GPAC, based on ideas from computable analysis, then one can compute transcendentally transcendental functions such as the Gamma function or Riemann’s Zeta function. 1