By Derrick G. Kourie, Bruce W. Watson
The concentration of this ebook is on bridging the distance among severe equipment for constructing software program. at the one hand, there are texts and techniques which are so formal that they scare off all however the so much committed theoretical machine scientists. at the different, there are a few who think that any degree of ritual is a waste of time, leading to software program that's built by means of following intestine emotions and intuitions.
Kourie and Watson suggest an procedure referred to as “correctness-by-construction,” a method to derive algorithms that will depend on formal thought, yet that calls for such idea to be deployed in a truly systematic and pragmatic means. First they supply the main theoretical heritage (like first-order predicate common sense or refinement legislation) that's had to comprehend and observe the strategy. They then element a chain of graded examples starting from binary seek to lattice hide graph building and finite automata minimization for you to exhibit the way it may be utilized to more and more complicated algorithmic difficulties.
The significant function of this booklet is to alter the best way software program builders process their activity at programming-in-the-small point, so as to bettering code caliber. hence it coheres with either the IEEE’s advisor to the software program Engineering physique of data (SWEBOK) suggestions, which identifies issues coated during this e-book as a part of the software program engineer’s arsenal of instruments and strategies, and with the ambitions of the software program Engineering procedure and conception (SEMAT) initiative, which goals to “refound software program engineering according to a pretty good theory.”
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Additional info for The correctness-by-construction approach to programming
We wash our hands here of the need to speculate why this happens: whether because of stray pointers, division by zero, or whatever. We simply decide, for theoretical purposes, to equate such behaviour to the execution of a special command called abort. abort is a completely chaotic command. We can think of it as having a weakest precondition that cannot be determined with respect to any postcondition, including the postcondition true. Note that this is not a claim that abort does not have a weakest precondition with respect to some postcondition.
Chapter 5 will discuss the various kinds of parameters, and the rules 10 to 13 given in that chapter will show how each parameter kind affects refinement. The rules will specifically be concerned with the pre- and postconditions of procedures. For the moment we simplistically ignore all issues around parameters. We also assume that a pre- and postcondition has been articulated for each procedure to specify its behaviour. P; P; Q/. P 2; P2; Q2/ are the specifications for procedures P1 and P2 respectively.
S; true/ when S is something other than skip, let us again return to our basic definitions of the precondition and of a Hoare triple. S;true/ just before S executes, then S will terminate and the computer will end up in a state belonging to the set Statestrue . Again, we are dealing here with an assertion of the form: antecedant H) consequent. The consequent amounts to an assertion that we really do not care about the final state in which we end; for the consequent to be true it is sufficient that S should terminate.