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Title: Mechanising an algebraic rely-guarantee refinement calculus
Authors: Machado Dias, Diego
Issue Date: 2017
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: Despite rely-guarantee (RG) being a well-studied program logic established in the 1980s, it was not until recently that researchers realised that rely and guarantee conditions could be treated as independent programming constructs. This recent reformulation of RG paved the way to algebraic characterisations which have helped to better understand the difficulties that arise in the practical application of this development approach. The primary focus of this thesis is to provide automated tool support for a rely-guarantee refinement calculus proposed by Hayes et. al., where rely and guarantee are defined as independent commands. Our motivation is to investigate the application of an algebraic approach to derive concrete examples using this calculus. In the course of this thesis, we locate and fix a few issues involving the refinement language, its operational semantics and preexisting proofs. Moreover, we extend the refinement calculus of Hayes et. al. to cover indexed parallel composition, non-atomic evaluation of expressions within specifications, and assignment to indexed arrays. These extensions are illustrated via concrete examples. Special attention is given to design decisions that simplify the application of the mechanised theory. For example, we leave part of the design of the expression language on the hands of the user, at the cost of the requiring the user to define the notion of undefinedness for unary and binary operators; and we also formalise a notion of indexed parallelism that is parametric on the type of the indexes, this is done deliberately to simplify the formalisation of algorithms. Additionally, we use stratification to reduce the number of cases in in simulation proofs involving the operational semantics. Finally, we also use the algebra to discuss the role of types in program derivation.
Description: PhD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Computing Science

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