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59
The Foundation of a Generic Theorem Prover
 Journal of Automated Reasoning
, 1989
"... Isabelle [28, 30] is an interactive theorem prover that supports a variety of logics. It represents rules as propositions (not as functions) and builds proofs by combining rules. These operations constitute a metalogic (or `logical framework') in which the objectlogics are formalized. Isabell ..."
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Cited by 471 (49 self)
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Isabelle [28, 30] is an interactive theorem prover that supports a variety of logics. It represents rules as propositions (not as functions) and builds proofs by combining rules. These operations constitute a metalogic (or `logical framework') in which the objectlogics are formalized. Isabelle is now based on higherorder logic  a precise and wellunderstood foundation. Examples illustrate use of this metalogic to formalize logics and proofs. Axioms for firstorder logic are shown sound and complete. Backwards proof is formalized by metareasoning about objectlevel entailment. Higherorder logic has several practical advantages over other metalogics. Many proof techniques are known, such as Huet's higherorder unification procedure. Key words: higherorder logic, higherorder unification, Isabelle, LCF, logical frameworks, metareasoning, natural deduction Contents 1 History and overview 2 2 The metalogic M 4 2.1 Syntax of the metalogic ......................... 4 2.2 ...
Uniform proofs as a foundation for logic programming
 ANNALS OF PURE AND APPLIED LOGIC
, 1991
"... A prooftheoretic characterization of logical languages that form suitable bases for Prologlike programming languages is provided. This characterization is based on the principle that the declarative meaning of a logic program, provided by provability in a logical system, should coincide with its ..."
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Cited by 426 (124 self)
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A prooftheoretic characterization of logical languages that form suitable bases for Prologlike programming languages is provided. This characterization is based on the principle that the declarative meaning of a logic program, provided by provability in a logical system, should coincide with its operational meaning, provided by interpreting logical connectives as simple and fixed search instructions. The operational semantics is formalized by the identification of a class of cutfree sequent proofs called uniform proofs. A uniform proof is one that can be found by a goaldirected search that respects the interpretation of the logical connectives as search instructions. The concept of a uniform proof is used to define the notion of an abstract logic programming language, and it is shown that firstorder and higherorder Horn clauses with classical provability are examples of such a language. Horn clauses are then generalized to hereditary Harrop formulas and it is shown that firstorder and higherorder versions of this new class of formulas are also abstract logic programming languages if the inference rules are those of either intuitionistic or minimal logic. The programming language significance of the various generalizations to firstorder Horn clauses is briefly discussed.
HigherOrder Abstract Syntax
"... We describe motivation, design, use, and implementation of higherorder abstract syntax as a central representation for programs, formulas, rules, and other syntactic objects in program manipulation and other formal systems where matching and substitution or syntax incorporates name binding informat ..."
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Cited by 358 (18 self)
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We describe motivation, design, use, and implementation of higherorder abstract syntax as a central representation for programs, formulas, rules, and other syntactic objects in program manipulation and other formal systems where matching and substitution or syntax incorporates name binding information in a uniform and language generic way. Thus it acts as a powerful link integrating diverse tools in such formal environments. We have implemented higherorder abstract syntax, a supporting matching and unification algorithm, and some clients in Common
A logic programming language with lambdaabstraction, function variables, and simple unification
 Extensions of Logic Programming. Springer Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence
, 1990
"... A meta programming language must be able to represent and manipulate such syntactic structures as programs, formulas, types, and proofs. A common characteristic of all these structures is that they involve notions of abstractions, scope, bound and free variables, substitution instances, and equality ..."
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Cited by 318 (27 self)
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A meta programming language must be able to represent and manipulate such syntactic structures as programs, formulas, types, and proofs. A common characteristic of all these structures is that they involve notions of abstractions, scope, bound and free variables, substitution instances, and equality up to alphabetic changes of bound variables.
Unification under a mixed prefix
 Journal of Symbolic Computation
, 1992
"... Unification problems are identified with conjunctions of equations between simply typed λterms where free variables in the equations can be universally or existentially quantified. Two schemes for simplifying quantifier alternation, called Skolemization and raising (a dual of Skolemization), are pr ..."
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Cited by 136 (14 self)
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Unification problems are identified with conjunctions of equations between simply typed λterms where free variables in the equations can be universally or existentially quantified. Two schemes for simplifying quantifier alternation, called Skolemization and raising (a dual of Skolemization), are presented. In this setting where variables of functional type can be quantified and not all types contain closed terms, the naive generalization of firstorder Skolemization has several technical problems that are addressed. The method of searching for preunifiers described by Huet is easily extended to the mixed prefix setting, although solving flexibleflexible unification problems is undecidable since types may be empty. Unification problems may have numerous incomparable unifiers. Occasionally, unifiers share common factors and several of these are presented. Various optimizations on the general unification search problem are as discussed. 1.
An Overview of λProlog
 In Fifth International Logic Programming Conference
, 1988
"... Abstract: λProlog is a logic programming language that extends Prolog by incorporating notions of higherorder functions, λterms, higherorder unification, polymorphic types, and mechanisms for building modules and secure abstract data types. These new features are provided in a principled fashion ..."
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Cited by 120 (38 self)
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Abstract: λProlog is a logic programming language that extends Prolog by incorporating notions of higherorder functions, λterms, higherorder unification, polymorphic types, and mechanisms for building modules and secure abstract data types. These new features are provided in a principled fashion by extending the classical firstorder theory of Horn clauses to the intuitionistic higherorder theory of hereditary Harrop formulas. The justification for considering this extension a satisfactory logic programming language is provided through the prooftheoretic notion of a uniform proof. The correspondence between each extension to Prolog and the new features in the stronger logical theory is discussed. Also discussed are various aspects of an experimental implementation of λProlog. Appears in the Fifth International Conference Symposium on Logic Programming, 15 – 19 August 1988, Seattle, Washington. This is a slightly corrected version of
Partial polymorphic type inference and higherorder unification
 IN PROCEEDINGS OF THE 1988 ACM CONFERENCE ON LISP AND FUNCTIONAL PROGRAMMING, ACM
, 1988
"... We show that the problem of partial type inference in the nthborder polymorphic Xcalculus is equivalent to nthorder unification. On the one hand, this means that partial type inference in polymorphic Xcalculi of order 2 or higher is undecidable. On the other hand, higherorder unification is oft ..."
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Cited by 88 (8 self)
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We show that the problem of partial type inference in the nthborder polymorphic Xcalculus is equivalent to nthorder unification. On the one hand, this means that partial type inference in polymorphic Xcalculi of order 2 or higher is undecidable. On the other hand, higherorder unification is often tractable in practice, and our translation entails a very useful algorithm for partial type inference in the worder polymorphic Xcalculus. We present an implementation in AProlog in full.
Mechanizing Programming Logics in Higher Order Logic
 in Current Trends in Hardware Verification and Automated Theorem Proving, ed. P.A. Subrahmanyam and Graham Birtwistle
, 1989
"... Formal reasoning about computer programs can be based directly on the semantics of the programming language, or done in a special purpose logic like Hoare logic. The advantage of the first approach is that it guarantees that the formal reasoning applies to the language being used (it is well known, ..."
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Cited by 64 (3 self)
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Formal reasoning about computer programs can be based directly on the semantics of the programming language, or done in a special purpose logic like Hoare logic. The advantage of the first approach is that it guarantees that the formal reasoning applies to the language being used (it is well known, for example, that Hoare’s assignment axiom fails to hold for most programming languages). The advantage of the second approach is that the proofs can be more direct and natural. In this paper, an attempt to get the advantages of both approaches is described. The rules of Hoare logic are mechanically derived from the semantics of a simple imperative programming language (using the HOL system). These rules form the basis for a simple program verifier in which verification conditions are generated by LCFstyle tactics whose validations use the derived Hoare rules. Because Hoare logic is derived, rather than postulated, it is straightforward to mix semantic and axiomatic reasoning. It is also straightforward to combine the constructs of Hoare logic with other applicationspecific notations. This is briefly illustrated for various logical constructs, including termination statements, VDMstyle ‘relational’ correctness specifications, weakest precondition statements and dynamic logic formulae. The theory underlying the work presented here is well known. Our contribution is to propose a way of mechanizing this theory in a way that makes certain practical details work out smoothly.
HigherOrder Horn Clauses
 JOURNAL OF THE ACM
, 1990
"... A generalization of Horn clauses to a higherorder logic is described and examined as a basis for logic programming. In qualitative terms, these higherorder Horn clauses are obtained from the firstorder ones by replacing firstorder terms with simply typed #terms and by permitting quantification ..."
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Cited by 61 (20 self)
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A generalization of Horn clauses to a higherorder logic is described and examined as a basis for logic programming. In qualitative terms, these higherorder Horn clauses are obtained from the firstorder ones by replacing firstorder terms with simply typed #terms and by permitting quantification over all occurrences of function symbols and some occurrences of predicate symbols. Several prooftheoretic results concerning these extended clauses are presented. One result shows that although the substitutions for predicate variables can be quite complex in general, the substitutions necessary in the context of higherorder Horn clauses are tightly constrained. This observation is used to show that these higherorder formulas can specify computations in a fashion similar to firstorder Horn clauses. A complete theorem proving procedure is also described for the extension. This procedure is obtained by interweaving higherorder unification with backchaining and goal reductions, and constitutes a higherorder generalization of SLDresolution. These results have a practical realization in the higherorder logic programming language called λProlog.
A Logic Programming Approach To Manipulating Formulas And Programs
 IEEE Symp. Logic Programming
, 1994
"... : Firstorder Horn clause logic can be extended to a higherorder setting in which function and predicate symbols can be variables and terms are replaced with simply typed terms. For such a logic programming language to be complete in principle, it must incorporate higherorder unification. Althoug ..."
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Cited by 56 (17 self)
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: Firstorder Horn clause logic can be extended to a higherorder setting in which function and predicate symbols can be variables and terms are replaced with simply typed terms. For such a logic programming language to be complete in principle, it must incorporate higherorder unification. Although higherorder unification is more complex than usual firstorder unification, its availability makes writing certain kinds of programs far more straightforward. In this paper, we present such programs written in a higherorder version of Prolog called Prolog. These programs manipulate structures, such as formulas and programs, which contain abstractions or bound variables. We show how a simple natural deduction theorem prover can be implemented in this language. Similarly we demonstrate how several simple program transformers for a functional programming language can be written in Prolog. These Prolog programs exploit the availability of conversion and higherorder unification to elegantly ...