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Probabilistic Programming Hongseok Yang
Probabilistic programming refers to the idea of using standard programming constructs for specifying probabilistic models from machine learning and statistics, and employing generic inference algorithms for answering various queries on these models, such as posterior inference and estimation of model evidence. Although this idea itself is not new and was, in fact, explored by several programming-language and statistics researchers in the early 2000, it is only in the last few years that probabilistic programming has gained a large amount of attention among researchers in machine learning and programming languages, and that expressive and efficient probabilistic programming systems (such as Anglican, Church, Figaro, Infer.net, PSI, PyMC, Stan, and Venture) started to appear and have been taken up by a nontrivial number of users.
The primary goal of my talk is to introduce probabilistic programming to the CONCUR/QEST/FORMATS audience. At the end of my talk, I want the audience to understand basic results and techniques in probabilistic programming and to feel that these results and techniques are relevant or at least related to what she or he studies, although they typically come from foreign research areas, such as machine learning and statistics. My talk will contain both technical materials and lessons that I learnt from my machine-learning colleagues in Oxford, who are developing a highly-expressive higher-order probabilistic programming language, called Anglican. It will also include my work on the denotational semantics of higher-order probabilistic programming languages and their inference algorithms, which are jointly pursued with colleagues in Cambridge, Edinburgh, Oxford and Tubingen.
Process Algebra 1
A Characterisation of Open Bisimilarity using an Intuitionistic Modal Logic Ki Yung Ahn Ross Horne Alwen Tiu
Open bisimilarity is the greatest bisimulation congruence for the pi-calculus. In open bisimilarity, free names in processes are treated as variables that may be instantiated; in contrast to late bisimilarity where free names are constants. An established modal logic due to Milner, Parrow, and Walker characterises late bisimilarity, that is, two processes satisfy the same set of formulae if and only if they are bisimilar. We propose an intuitionistic variation of this modal logic and prove that it characterises open bisimilarity. The soundness proof is mechanised in Abella. The completeness proof provides an algorithm for generating distinguishing formulae, useful for explaining and certifying whenever processes are non-bisimilar.
Concurrent Reversible Sessions Ilaria Castellani Mariangiola Dezani-Ciancaglini Paola Giannini
We present a calculus for concurrent reversible multiparty sessions, which improves on recent proposals in several respects: it allows for concurrent and sequential composition within processes and types, it gives a compact representation of the "past" of processes and types, which facilitates the definition of rollback, and it implements a fine-tuned strategy for backward computation. We propose a refined session type system for our calculus and show that it enforces the expected properties of session fidelity, forward and backward progress, and a weak form of causal consistency. In conclusion, our calculus is a conservative extension of previous proposals, offering enhanced expressive power and refined analysis techniques.
On the Power of Name-Passing Communication Yuxi Fu
It is shown that higher order process calculi cannot be interpreted in name-passing calculi in a robust way.
A New Notion of Compositionality for Concurrent Program Proofs Azahdeh Farzan
Refinement for signal flow graphs Joshua Holland Pawel Sobocinski Filippo Bonchi Dusko Pavlovic
The symmetric monoidal theory of Interacting Hopf Algebras provides a sound and complete axiomatisation for linear relations over a given field. As is the case for ordinary relations, linear relations have a natural order that coincides with inclusion. In this paper, we give a presentation for this ordering by extending the theory of Interacting Hopf Algebras with a single additional inequation. We show that the extended theory gives rise to an abelian bicategories—a concept due to Carboni and Walters—and highlight similarities with the algebra of relations. Most importantly, the ordering leads to a well-behaved notion of refinement for signal flow graphs.
|16:30||Synthesis Tutorial Sobocinski|
k-Bounded Petri Net Synthesis from Modal Transition Systems Uli Schlachter Harro Wimmel
We present a goal-oriented algorithm that can synthesise k-bounded Petri nets (k ∈ ℕ+) from modal transition systems (MTS), an extension of labelled transition systems with optional and required behaviour. The algorithm builds a potential reachability graph of a Petri net from scratch, extending it stepwise with required behaviour from the given MTS and over-approximating the result to a new valid reachability graph. Termination occurs if either the MTS yields no additional requirements or the resulting net of the second step shows a conflict with the behaviour allowed by the MTS, making it non-sythesisable.
Controlling a Population Nathalie Bertrand Miheer Dewaskar Blaise Genest Hugo Gimbert
We introduce a new setting where a population of agents, each modelled by a finite-state system, are controlled uniformly: the controller applies the same action to every agent. The framework is largely inspired by the control of a biological system, namely a population of yeasts, where the controller may only change the environment common to all cells. We study a synchronisation problem for such populations: no matter how individual agents react to the actions of the controller, the controller aims at driving all agents synchronously to a target state. The agents are naturally represented by a non-deterministic finite state automaton (NFA), the same for every agent, and the whole system is encoded as a 2-player game. The first player chooses actions, and the second player resolves non-determinism for each agent. The game with m agents is called the m-population game. This gives rise to a parameterized control problem (where control refers to 2 player games), namely the population control problem: can player one control the m-population game for all m in N whatever player two does? In this paper, we prove that the population control problem is decidable, and it is a EXPTIME-complete problem. As far as we know, this is one of the first results on parameterized control. Our algorithm, not based on cut-off techniques, produces winning strategies which are symbolic, that is, they do not need to count precisely how the population is spread between states. We also show that if there is no winning strategy, then there is a population size cutoff such that playerone wins the m-population game if and only if m < cutoff. Surprisingly, cutoff can be doubly exponential in the number of states of the NFA, with tight upper and lower bounds.
Coverability Synthesis in Parametric Petri Nets Nicolas David Claude Jard Didier Lime Olivier H. Roux
We study Parametric Petri Nets (PPNs), i.e., Petri nets for which some arc weights can be parameters. In that setting, we address a problem of parameter synthesis, which consists in computing the exact set of values for the parameters such that a given marking is coverable in the instantiated net. Since the emptiness of that solution set is already undecidable for general PPNs, we address a special case where parameters are used only as input weights (preT-PPNs), and consequently for which the solution set is downward-closed. To this end, we invoke a result for the representation of upward closed set from Valk and Jantzen. To use this procedure, we show we need to decide universal coverability, that is decide if some marking is coverable for every possible values of the parameters. We therefore provide a proof of its EXPSPACE-completeness, thus settling the previously open problem of its decidability. We also propose an adaptation of this reasoning to the case of parameters used only as output weights (postT-PPNs). In this case, the condition to use this procedure can be reduced to the decidability of the existential coverability, that is decide if there exists values of the parameters making a given marking coverable. This problem is known decidable but we provide here a cleaner proof, providing its EXPSPACE-completeness, by reduction to ω-Petri Nets.
Consistently-Detecting Monitors Adrian Francalanza
We study a contextual definition for deterministic monitoring based on consistent detections. It is defined in terms of the observed behaviour of the monitor when instrumented over arbitrary systems. We give an alternative, co-inductive definition based on controllability which does not rely on system quantifications, and show that it is full-abstract wrt. the former definition. We then develop a symbolic counterpart to the controllability definition so as to facilitate an automated analysis for controllable monitors involving data.
TBA Pawel Sobocinski
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Keynote Fribourg (FORMATS)
Euler’s method applied to the control of switched systems Laurent Fribourg
Hybrid systems are a powerful formalism for modeling and reasoning about cyber-physical systems. They mix the continuous and discrete natures of the evolution of computerized systems. Switched systems are a special kind of hybrid systems, with restricted discrete behaviours: those systems only have finitely many different modes of (continuous) evolution, with isolated switches between modes. Such systems provide a good balance between expressiveness and controllability, and are thus in widespread use in large branches of industry such as power electronics and automotive control. The control law for a switched system defines the way of selecting the modes during the run of the system. Controllability is the problem of (automatically) synthezing a control law in order to satisfy a desired property, such as safety (maintaining the variables within a given zone) or stabilisation (confinement of the variables in a close neighborhood around an objective point).In order to compute the control of a switched system, we need to compute the solutions of the differential equations governing the modes. Euler’s method is the most basic technique for approximating such solutions. We present here an estimation of the Euler’s method local error, using the notion of “one-sided Lispchitz constant’’ for modes. This yields a general synthesis approach which can encompass uncertain parameters, local information and stochastic noise.
We will sketch out how the approach relates with other symbolic methods based on interval arithmetic and Lyapunov functions. We will also present some applicative examples which illustrate its advantages and limitations.
Model-checking Counting Temporal Logics on Flat Structures Normann Decker Peter Habermehl Martin Leucker Arnaud Sangnier Daniel Thoma
We study several extensions of linear-time and computation-tree temporal logics with quantifiers that allow for counting how often certain properties hold. For most of these extensions, the model-checking problem is undecidable, but we show that decidability can be recovered by considering flat Kripke structures where each state belongs to at most one simple loop. Most decision procedures are based on results on (flat) counter systems where counters are used to implement the evaluation of counting operators.
The Complexity of Flat Freeze LTL Benedikt Bollig Karin Quaas Arnaud Sangnier
We consider the model-checking problem for freeze LTL on one-counter automata (OCAs). Freeze LTL extends LTL with the freeze quantifier, which allows one to store different counter values of a run in registers so that they can be compared with one another. As the model-checking problem is undecidable in general, we focus on the flat fragment of freeze LTL, in which the usage of the freeze quantifier is restricted. Recently, Lechner et al. showed that model checking for flat freeze LTL on OCAs with binary encoding of counter updates is decidable and in 2NEXPTIME. In this paper, we prove that the problem is, in fact, NEXPTIME-complete no matter whether counter updates are encoded in unary or binary. Like Lechner et al., we rely on a reduction to the reachability problem in OCAs with parameterized tests (OCAPs). The new aspect is that we simulate OCAPs by alternating two-way automata over words. This implies an exponential upper bound on the parameter values that we exploit towards an NP algorithm for reachability in OCAPs with unary updates. We obtain our main result as a corollary.
|11:30||Pushdown Systems Tutorial Donaldson|
Bidirectional Nested Weighted Automata Krishnendu Chatterjee Thomas Henzinger Jan Otop
Nested weighted automata (NWA) present a robust and convenient automata-theoretic formalism for quantitative specifications, which subsumes automata with monitor counters. Previous works have considered NWA that processed input words only in the forward direction. It is natural to allow the automata to process input words backwards as well, for example, to measure the maximal or average time between a response and the preceding request. We therefore introduce and study bidirectional NWA that can process input words in both directions. First, we show that bidirectional NWA can express interesting quantitative properties that are not expressible by forward-only NWA. Second, for the fundamental decision problems of emptiness and universality, we establish decidability and complexity results for the new framework which match the best-known results for the special case of forward-only NWA. Thus, for NWA, the increased expressiveness of bidirectionality is achieved at no additional computational complexity. This is in stark contrast to the unweighted case, where bidirectional finite automata are no more expressive but exponentially more succinct than their forward-only counterparts.
Data Multi-Pushdown Automata Parosh Aziz Abdulla C. Aiswarya Mohamed Faouzi Atig
We extend the classical model of multi-pushdown systems by considering systems that operate on a finite set of variables ranging over natural numbers. The conditions on variables are defined via gap-order constraints that allow to compare variables for equality, or to check that the gap between the values of two variables exceeds a given natural number. Furthermore, each message inside a stack is equipped with a data item representing its value. When a message is pushed to the stack, its value may be defined by a variable. When a message is popped, its value may be copied to a variable. Thus, we obtain a system that is infinite in multiple dimensions, namely we have a number of stacks that may contain an unbounded number of messages each of which is equipped with a natural number. It is well-known that the verification of any non-trivial property of multi-pushdown systems is undecidable, even for two stacks and for a finite data-domain. In this paper, we show the decidability of the reachability problem for the classes of data multi-pushdown system that admit a bounded split-width (or equivalently a bounded tree-width). As an immediate consequence, we obtain decidability for several subclasses of data multi-pushdown systems. These include systems with single stacks, restricted ordering policies on stack operations, bounded scope, bounded phase, and bounded context switches.
Towards an Efficient Tree Automata based technique for Timed Systems S. Akshay Paul Gastin Krishna S. Ilias Sarkar
The focus of this paper is the analysis of real-time systems with recursion, through the development of good theoretical techniques which are implementable. Time is modeled using clock variables, and recursion is modeled using stacks. Our technique consists of modeling the behaviours of the timed system as graphs, and interpreting these graphs on tree terms by showing a bound on their tree-width. We then build a tree automaton that accepts exactly those tree terms that describe realizable runs of the timed system. The emptiness of the timed system thus boils down to the emptiness of a finite tree automaton that accepts these tree terms.
Forward Progress on GPU Concurrency Alastair Donaldson
The tutorial at CONCUR will provide a practical overview of work undertaken over the last six years in the Multicore Programming Group at Imperial College London, and with collaborators internationally, related to understanding and reasoning about concurrency in software designed for acceleration on GPUs. In this article we provide an overview of this work, which includes contributions to data race analysis, compiler testing, memory model understanding and formalisation, and most recently efforts to enable portable GPU implementations of algorithms that require forward progress guarantees.
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TBA Madan Musuvathi
Flow Logic Orna Kupferman Gal Vardi
A flow network is a directed graph in which each edge has a capacity, bounding the amount of flow that can travel through it. Flow networks have attracted a lot of research in computer science. Indeed, many questions in numerous application areas can be reduced to questions about flow networks. This includes direct applications, namely a search for a maximal flow in networks, as well as less direct applications, like maximal bipartite matching or optimal scheduling. Many of these applications would benefit from a framework in which one can formally reason about properties of flow networks that go beyond their maximal flow. We introduce and study Flow Logics: modal logics that treat flow functions as explicit first-order objects and enable the specification of rich properties of flow networks. The syntax of our logic BFL* (Branching Flow Logic) is similar to the syntax of the temporal logic CTL*, except that atomic assertions may be flow propositions, like > x or ≥ x, for x ∈ ℕ, which refer to the value of the flow in a vertex, and first-order quantification can be applied to both paths and flow functions. For example, the BFL* formula E[(≥ 100) ∧ AG(low → (≤ 20))] states that there is a legal flow function in which the flow is above 100 and in all paths, the amount of flow that travels through vertices with low security is at most 20. We present an exhaustive study of the theoretical and practical aspects of BFL*, as well as extensions and fragments of it. Our extensions include flow quantifications that range over non-integral flow functions or over maximal flow functions, path quantification that ranges over paths along which flow travels, past operators, and first-order quantification of flow values. We focus on the model-checking problem and show that it is PSPACE-complete, as it is for CTL*. Handling of flow quantifiers, however, increases the complexity in terms of the network to PNP, even for the LFL and BFL fragments, which are the flow-counterparts of LTL and CTL. We are still able to point to a useful fragment of BFL* for which the model-checking problem can be solved in polynomial time.
Tractability of separation logic with inductive definitions: Beyond lists Taolue Chen Fu Song Zhilin Wu
In 2011, Cook et al. showed that the satisfiability and entailment can be checked in polynomial time for a fragment of separation logic that allows for reasoning about programs with pointers and linked lists introduced by Berdine et al. in 2004. In this paper, we investigate whether the tractability results can be extended to more expressive fragments of separation logic that allow defining data structures beyond linked lists. To this end, we introduce separation logic with a simply-nonlinear compositional inductive predicate where source, destination, and static parameters are identified explicitly (SLID-SNC). We show that if the inductive predicate has more than one source (destination) parameter, the satisfiability problem for SLID-SNC becomes intractable in general. This is exemplified by an inductive predicate for doubly linked list segments. By contrast, if the inductive predicate has only one source (destination) parameter, the satisfiability and entailment problems for SLID-SNC are tractable. In particular, the tractability results hold for inductive predicates that define list segments with tail pointers and trees with one hole.
Checking Linearizability of Concurrent Priority Queues Ahmed Bouajjani Constantin Enea Chao Wang
Efficient implementations of concurrent objects such as atomic collections are essential to modern computing. Programming such objects is error prone: in minimizing the synchronization overhead between concurrent object invocations, one risks the conformance to sequential specifications – or in formal terms, one risks violating linearizability. Unfortunately, verifying linearizability is undecidable in general, even on classes of implementations where the usual control-state reachability is decidable. In this work we consider concurrent priority queues which are fundamental to many multi-threaded applications such as task scheduling or discrete event simulation, and show that verifying linearizability of such implementations can be reduced to control-state reachability. This reduction entails the first decidability results for verifying concurrent priority queues in the context of an unbounded number of threads, and it enables the application of existing safety-verification tools for establishing their correctness.
Higher-Order Linearisability Andrzej Murawski Nikos Tzevelekos
Linearisability is a central notion for verifying concurrent libraries: a library is proven correct if its operational history can be rearranged into a sequential one that satisfies a given specification. Until now, linearisability has been examined for libraries in which method arguments and method results were of ground type, including libraries parameterised with such methods. In this paper we extend linearisability to the general higher-order setting: methods can be passed as arguments and returned as values. A library may also depend on abstract methods of any order.
Algebraic Laws for Weak Consistency Andrea Cerone Alexey Gotsman Hongseok Yang
Modern distributed systems often rely on so called weakly-consistent databases, which achieve scalability by sacrificing the consistency guarantee of distributed transaction processing. Such databases have been formalised in two different styles, one based on abstract executions and the other based on dependency graphs. The choice between these styles has been made according to intended applications. The former has been used for specifying and verifying the implementation of these databases, while the latter for proving properties of client programs of the databases. In this paper, we present a set of novel algebraic laws (i.e. inequations) that connect these two styles of specifications. The laws relate binary relations used in a specification based on abstract executions, to those used in a specification based on dependency graphs. We then show that this algebraic connection gives rise to so called robustness criteria, conditions which ensure that a client program of a weakly-consistent database does not exhibit anomalous behaviours due to weak consistency. These criteria make it easy to reason about these client programs, and may become a basis for dynamic or static program analyses. For a certain class of consistency models specifications, we prove a full abstraction result that connects the two styles of specifications.
On Petri Nets with Hierarchical Special Arcs S. Akshay Supratik Chakraborty Ankush Das Vishal Jagannath Sai Sandeep
We investigate the decidability of termination, reachability, coverability and deadlock-freeness of Petri nets endowed with a hierarchy of places, and with inhibitor arcs, reset arcs and transfer arcs that respect this hierarchy. We also investigate what happens when we have a mix of these special arcs, some of which respect the hierarchy, while others do not. We settle the decidability status of the above four problems for all combinations of hierarchy, inhibitor, reset and transfer arcs, except the termination problem for two combinations. For both these combinations, we show that the termination problem is as hard as deciding positivity — a long-standing open problem in linear recurrences.
Goal-Driven Unfolding of Petri Nets Thomas Chatain Loïc Paulevé
Unfoldings provide an efficient way to avoid the state-space explosion due to interleavings of concurrent transitions when exploring the runs of a Petri net. The theory of adequate orders allows one to define finite prefixes of unfoldings which contain all the reachable markings. In this paper we are interested in reachability of a single given marking, called the goal. We propose an algorithm for computing a finite prefix of the unfolding of a 1-safe Petri net that preserves all minimal configurations reaching this goal. Our algorithm combines the unfolding technique with on-the-fly model reduction by static analysis aiming at avoiding the exploration of branches which are not needed for reaching the goal. We present some experimental results.
Unbounded product-form Petri nets Patricia Bouyer Serge Haddad Vincent Jugé
Computing steady-state distributions in infinite-state stochastic systems is in general a very difficult task. Product-form Petri nets are those Petri nets for which the steady-state distribution can be described as a natural product corresponding, up to a normalising constant, to an exponentiation of the markings. However, even though some classes of nets are known to have a product-form distribution, computing the normalising constant can be hard. The class of (closed) Π3-nets has been proposed in an earlier work, for which it is shown that one can compute the steady-state distribution efficiently. However these nets are bounded. In this paper, we generalise queuing Markovian networks and closed Π3-nets to obtain the class of open Π3-nets, that generate infinite-state systems. We show interesting properties of these nets: (1) we prove that liveness can be decided in polynomial time, and that reachability in live Π3-nets can be decided in polynomial time; (2) we show that we can decide ergodicity of such nets in polynomial time as well; (3) we provide a pseudo-polynomial time algorithm to compute the normalising constant.
|16:30||Semantics 1 Tutorial Vafeiadis|
Two Lower Bounds for BPA Mingzhang Huang Qiang Yin
Branching bisimilarity on normed Basic Process Algebra (nBPA) was claimed to be EXPTIME-hard in previous papers without any explicit proof. Recently it is reminded by Petr Jančar that the claim lacked proper justification. In this paper, we develop a new complete proof for EXPTIME-hardness of branching bisimilarity on nBPA. We also prove the associated regularity problem on nBPA is PSPACE-hard. This improves previous P-hard result.
The Power of Convex Algebras Filippo Bonchi Alexandra Silva Ana Sokolova
Probabilistic automata (PA) combine probability and nondeterminism. They can be given different semantics, like strong bisimilarity, convex bisimilarity, or (more recently) distribution bisimilarity. The latter is based on the view of PA as transformers of probability distributions, also called belief states, and promotes distributions to first-class citizens. We give a coalgebraic account of the latter semantics, and explain the genesis of the belief- state transformer from a PA. To do so, we make explicit the convex algebraic structure present in PA and identify belief-state transformers as transition systems with state space that carries a convex algebra. As a consequence of our abstract approach, we can give a sound proof technique which we call bisimulation up-to convex hull.
A Coalgebraic Paige-Tarjan Algorithm Ulrich Dorsch Stefan Milius Lutz Schröder Thorsten Wißmann
We develop a coalgebraic generalization of the classical Paige-Tarjan algorithm for efficient bisimilarity checking. Coalgebraic generality implies that our algorithm applies to systems beyond the standard relational setup, in particular various flavours of weighted systems. The specific requirements of the algorithm force rather strong assumptions on the coalgebraic type functors, but by using modularity principles in multi-sorted coalgebra and generalizing our methods beyond the category of sets, we nevertheless arrive at covering not just the known examples (transition systems and Markov chains) but also systems with mixed transition types, such as Segala-style probabilistic automata.
TBA Viktor Vafeiadis
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Admissibility in Games with Imperfect Information Jean-François Raskin
In this invited paper, we study the concept of admissible strategies for two player win/lose infinite sequential games with imperfect information. We show that in stark contrast with the perfect information variant, admissible strategies are only guaranteed to exist when players have objectives that are closed sets. As a consequence, we also study decision problems related to the existence of admissible strategies for regular games as well as finite duration games.
Process Algebra 2
On Decidability of Concurrent Kleene Algebra Paul Brunet Damien Pous Georg Struth
Concurrent Kleene algebras support equational reasoning about computing systems with concurrent behaviours. Their natural semantics is given by series(-parallel) rational pomset languages, a standard true concurrency semantics, which is often associated with processes of Petri nets. We use constructions on Petri nets to provide two decision procedures for such pomset languages motivated by the equational and the refinement theory of concurrent Kleene algebra. The contribution to the first problem lies in a much simpler algorithm and an ExpSpace complexity bound. Decidability of the second, more interesting problem is new and, in fact, ExpSpace-complete.
Brzozowski Goes Concurrent - A Kleene Theorem for Pomset Languages Tobias Kappe Paul Brunet Bas Luttik Alexandra Silva Fabio Zanasi
Concurrent Kleene Algebra (CKA) is a mathematical formalism to study programs that exhibit concurrent behaviour. As with previous extensions of Kleene Algebra, characterizing the free model is crucial in order to develop the foundations of the theory and potential applications. For CKA, this has been an open question for a few years and this paper makes an important step towards an answer. We present a new automaton model and a Kleene-like theorem for pomset languages, which are a natural candidate for the free model. There are two substantial differences with previous work: from expressions to automata, we use Brzozowski derivatives, which enable a direct construction of the automaton; from automata to expressions, we provide a syntactic characterization of the automata that denote valid CKA behaviours.
Infinite-Duration Bidding Games Guy Avni Ventsislav Chonev Thomas A. Henzinger
Two-player games on graphs are widely studied in formal methods as they model the interaction between a system and its environment. The game is played by moving a token throughout a graph to produce an infinite path. There are several common modes to determine how the players move the token through the graph; e.g., in turn-based games the players alternate turns in moving the token. We study the bidding mode of moving the token, which, to the best of our knowledge, has never been studied in infinite-duration games. Both players have separate budgets, which sum up to 1. In each turn, a bidding takes place. Both players submit bids simultaneously, and a bid is legal if it does not exceed the available budget. The winner of the bidding pays his bid to the other player and moves the token. For reachability objectives, repeated bidding games have been studied and are called Richman games. There, a central question is the existence and computation of threshold budgets; namely, a value t ∈ [0,1] such that if PO's budget exceeds t, he can win the game, and if PT's budget exceeds 1-t, he can win the game. We focus on parity games and mean-payoff games. We show existence of threshold budgets in these games, and reduce the problem of finding them to Richman games. We also determine the strategy-complexity of an optimal strategy. Our most interesting result shows that memoryless strategies suffice for mean-payoff bidding games.
Nash Equilibrium and Bisimulation Invariance Julian Gutierrez Paul Harrenstein Giuseppe Perelli Michael Wooldridge
Game theory provides a well-established framework for the analysis of concurrent and multi-agent systems. The basic idea is that concurrent processes (agents) can be understood as corresponding to players in a game; plays represent the possible computation runs of the system; and strategies define the behaviour of agents. Typically, strategies are modelled as functions from sequences of system states to player actions. Analysing a system in such a setting involves computing the set of (Nash) equilibria in the concurrent game. However, we show that, with respect to the above model of strategies—arguably, the standard model in the literature—bisimilarity does not preserve the existence of Nash equilibria. Thus, two concurrent games which are behaviourally equivalent from a semantic perspective, and which from a logical perspective satisfy the same temporal formulae, nevertheless have fundamentally different properties from a game theoretic perspective. In this paper we explore the issues raised by this discovery, and investigate three models of strategies with respect to which the existence of Nash equilibria is preserved under bisimilarity. We also use some of these models of strategies to provide new semantic foundations for logics for strategic reasoning, and investigate restricted scenarios where bisimilarity can be shown to preserve the existence of Nash equilibria with respect to the conventional model of strategies in the literature.
The Robot Routing Problem for Collecting Aggregate Stochastic Rewards Rayna Dimitrova Ivan Gavran Rupak Majumdar Vinayak Prabhu Sadegh Soudjani
We propose a new model for formalizing reward collection problems on graphs with dynamically generated rewards which may appear and disappear based on a stochastic model. The robot routing problem is modeled as a graph whose nodes are stochastic processes generating potential rewards over discrete time. The rewards are generated according to the stochastic process, but at each step, an existing reward may disappear with a given probability. The edges in the graph encode the (unit-distance) paths between the rewards' locations. On visiting a node, the robot collects the accumulated reward at the node at that time, but traveling between the nodes takes time. The optimization question asks to compute a path that maximizes the expected collected rewards. We consider the finite and infinite-horizon robot routing problems. For finite-horizon, the goal is to maximize the total expected reward, while for infinite horizon we consider limit-average objectives. We study the computational and strategy complexity of these problems, establish NP-lower bounds and show that optimal strategies require memory in general. We also provide an algorithm for computing epsilon-optimal infinite paths for arbitrary epsilon > 0.
Divide and Congruence III: Stability & Divergence Wan Fokkink Rob van Glabbeek Bas Luttik
In two earlier papers we derived congruence formats for weak semantics on the basis of a decomposition method for modal formulas. The idea is that a congruence format for a semantics must ensure that the formulas in the modal characterisation of this semantics are always decomposed into formulas that are again in this modal characterisation. Here this work is extended with important stability and divergence requirements. Stability refers to the absence of a tau-transition. We show, using the decomposition method, how congruence formats can be relaxed for weak semantics that are stability-respecting. Divergence, which refers to the presence of an infinite sequence of tau-transitions, escapes the inductive decomposition method. We circumvent this problem by proving that a congruence format for a stability-respecting weak semantics is also a congruence format for its divergence-preserving counterpart.
Divergence and unique solution of equations Adrien Durier Daniel Hirschkoff Davide Sangiorgi
We study proof techniques for bisimilarity based on unique solution of equations. We draw inspiration from a result by Roscoe in the denotational setting of CSP and for failure semantics, essentially stating that an equation (or a system of equations) whose infinite unfolding never produces a divergence has the unique-solution property. We transport this result onto the operational setting of CCS and for bisimilarity. We then exploit the operational approach to: refine the theorem, distinguishing between different forms of divergence; derive an abstract formulation of the theorems, on generic LTSs; adapt the theorems to other equivalences such as trace equivalence, and to preorders such as trace inclusion. We compare the resulting techniques to enhancements of the bisimulation proof method (the ‘up-to techniques’). Finally, we study the theorems in name-passing calculi such as the asynchronous π-calculus, and revisit the completeness proof of Milner’s encoding of the λ-calculus into the π-calculus for Lévy-Longo Trees.
Rule Formats for Nominal Transition Systems Luca Aceto Ignacio Fábregas Álvaro García-Pérez Anna Ingólfsdóttir Yolanda Ortega-Mallén
The nominal transition systems (NTS) of Parrow et al. describe the operational semantics of nominal process calculi. We study NTSs in terms of the nominal residual transition systems (NRTS) that we introduce. We provide rule formats for the specifications of NRTSs that ensure that the associated NRTS is an NTS and apply them to the operational specification of the early pi-calculus. Our study stems from the recent Nominal SOS of Cimini et al. and from earlier works in nominal sets and nominal logic by Gabbay, Pitts and their collaborators.
Model Checking ω-regular Properties for Quantum Markov Chains Yuan Feng Ernst Moritz Hahn Andrea Turrini Shenggang Ying
Quantum Markov chains are an extension of classical Markov chains which are labelled with super-operators rather than probabilities. They allow to faithfully represent quantum programs and quantum protocols. In this paper, we investigate model checking ω-regular properties, a very general class of properties (e.g. LTL properties) of interest, against this model. For classical Markov chains, such properties are usually checked by building the product of the model with a language automaton. Subsequent analysis is then performed on this product. When doing so, one takes into account its graph structure, and for instance performs different analyses per bottom strongly connected component (BSCC). Unfortunately, for quantum Markov chains such an approach does not work directly, because super-operators behave differently from probabilities. To overcome this problem, we transform the product quantum Markov chain into a single super-operator, which induces a decomposition of the state space (the tensor product of classical state space and the quantum one) into a family of BSCC subspaces. Interestingly, we show that this BSCC decomposition provides a solution to the issue of model checking ω-regular properties for quantum Markov chains.
Probabilistic Automata of Bounded Ambiguity Nathanaël Fijalkow Cristian Riveros James Worrell
Probabilistic automata are a computational model introduced by Michael Rabin, extending nondeterministic finite automata with probabilistic transitions. Despite its simplicity, this model is very expressive and many of the associated algorithmic questions are undecidable. In this work we focus on the emptiness problem, which asks whether a given probabilistic automaton accepts some word with probability higher than a given threshold. We consider a natural and well-studied structural restriction on automata, namely the degree of ambiguity, which is defined as the maximum number of accepting runs over all words. We observe that undecidability of the emptiness problem requires infinite ambiguity and so we focus on the case of finitely ambiguous probabilistic automata. Our main results are to construct efficient algorithms for analysing finitely ambiguous probabilistic automata through a reduction to a multi-objective optimisation problem, called the stochastic path problem. We obtain a polynomial time algorithm for approximating the value of finitely ambiguous probabilistic automata and a quasi-polynomial time algorithm for the emptiness problem for 2-ambiguous probabilistic automata.
Algorithms to Compute Probabilistic Bisimilarity Distances for Labelled Markov Chains Qiyi Tang Franck van Breugel
In the late nineties, Desharnais, Gupta, Jagadeesan and Panangaden presented probabilistic bisimilarity distances on the states of a labelled Markov chain. This provided a quantitative generalization of probabilistic bisimilarity introduced by Larsen and Skou a decade earlier. In the last decade, several algorithms to approximate and compute these probabilistic bisimilarity distances have been put forward. In this paper, we correct, improve and generalize some of these algorithms. Furthermore, we compare their performance experimentally.
Uniform sampling for networks of automata Nicolas Basset Jean Mairesse Michèle Soria
We call network of automata a family of partially synchronised automata, i.e. a family of deterministic automata which are synchronised via shared letters, and evolve independently otherwise. We address the problem of uniform random sampling of words recognised by a network of automata. To that purpose, we define the reduced automaton of the model, which involves only the product of the synchronised part of the component automata. We provide uniform sampling algorithms which are polynomial with respect to the size of the reduced automaton, greatly improving on the best known algorithms. Our sampling algorithms rely on combinatorial and probabilistic methods and are of three different types: exact, Boltzmann and Parry sampling.