Kleene under a Demonic Star
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In relational semantics, the input-output semantics of a program is a relation on its set of states. We generalize this in considering elements of Kleene algebras as semantical values. In a nondeterministic context, the demonic semantics is calculated by considering the worst behavior of the program. In this paper, we concentrate on while loops. Calculating the semantics of a loop is difficult, but showing the correctness of any candidate abstraction is much easier. For deterministic programs, Mills has described a checking method known as the while statement verification rule. A corresponding programming theorem for nondeterministic iterative constructs is proposed, proved and applied to an example. This theorem can be considered as a generalization of the while statement verification rule to nondeterministic loops.
Keywordswhile loop demonic semantics relational abstraction verification Kleene algebra rule generalization
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