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Implicit propagation in structural operational semantics
Electronic Notes in Theoretical Computer Science, Volume: 229, Issue: 4, Pages: 49 - 66
Swansea University Author: Peter Mosses
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<p>In contrast to a transition system specification in process algebra, a structural operational semantics (SOS) of a programming language usually involves auxiliary entities: stores, environments, etc. When specifying SOS rules, particular auxiliary entities often need to be propagated unchan...
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<p>In contrast to a transition system specification in process algebra, a structural operational semantics (SOS) of a programming language usually involves auxiliary entities: stores, environments, etc. When specifying SOS rules, particular auxiliary entities often need to be propagated unchanged between premises and conclusions. The standard technique is to make such propagation explicit, using variables. However, referring to all entities that need to be propagated unchanged in each rule can be tedious, and it hinders direct reuse of rules in different language descriptions.</p><p>This paper proposes a new interpretation of SOS rules, such that each auxiliary entity is implicitly propagated in all rules in which it is not mentioned. The main benefits include significant notational simplification of SOS rules and much-improved reusability. This new interpretation of SOS rules is based on the same foundations as Modular SOS, but avoids the notational overhead of grouping auxiliary entities together in labels.</p><p>After motivating and explaining implicit propagation, the paper considers the foundations of SOS and Modular SOS specifications, and defines the meaning of SOS specifications with implicit propagation by translating them to Modular SOS. It then shows how implicit propagation can simplify various rules found in the SOS literature.</p>
In SOS 2008, Proc. 5th Workshop on Structural Operational Semantics, Reykjavik, Iceland
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