## On the Complexity of Nonrecursive XQuery and Functional Query Languages on Complex Values

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Venue: | In Proc. PODS’05 |

Citations: | 40 - 1 self |

### BibTeX

@INPROCEEDINGS{Koch_onthe,

author = {Christoph Koch},

title = {On the Complexity of Nonrecursive XQuery and Functional Query Languages on Complex Values},

booktitle = {In Proc. PODS’05},

year = {}

}

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### Abstract

This article studies the complexity of evaluating functional query languages for complex values such as monad algebra and the recursion-free fragment of XQuery. We show that monad algebra with equality restricted to atomic values is complete for the class TA[2O(n) , O(n)] of problems solvable in linear exponential time with a linear number of alternations. The monotone fragment of monad algebra with atomic value equality but without negation is complete for nondeterministic exponential time. For monad algebra with deep equality, we establish TA[2O(n) , O(n)] lower and exponential-space upper bounds. We also study a fragment of XQuery, Core XQuery, that seems to incorporate all the features of a query language on complex values that are traditionally deemed essential. A close connection between monad algebra on lists and Core XQuery (with “child ” as the only axis) is exhibited, and it is shown that these languages are expressively equivalent up to representation issues. We show that Core XQuery is just as hard as monad algebra w.r.t. query and combined complexity, and that it is in TC0 if the query is assumed fixed. As Core XQuery is NEXPTIME-hard, it is commonly believed that any algorithm for evaluating Core XQuery has to require exponential amounts of working memory and doubly exponential time in the worst case. We present a property of queries – the lack of a certain form of composition – that virtually all real-world XQueries have and that allows for query evaluation in singly exponential time and polynomial space. Still, we are able to show for an important special case – Core XQuery with equality testing restricted to atomic values – that the composition-free language is just as expressive as the language with composition. Thus, under widely-held complexitytheoretic assumptions, the composition-free language is an exponentially less succinct version of the language with composition.