Verification of Sequential and Concurrent Programs (Texts & Monographs in Computer Science)

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9780387975320: Verification of Sequential and Concurrent Programs (Texts & Monographs in Computer Science)
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This book provides a structural introduction to program verification. Sequential programs in the form of deterministic and nondeterministic programs, and concurrent programs in the form of parallel and distributed programs, are considered within the context of their partial and total correctness. While other books have covered verification and semantics of sequential programs, this is the first book to address verification and semantics of structured concurrent programs. The book is appropriate for either a one- or two-semester introductory course on program verification for upper division of undergraduate studies or graduate students. It can also be used as an introduction to operational semantics. Outlines of possible one-semester courses are presented in the preface of the book. Within these chapters, the authors systematically discuss five classes of programs, concentrating on operational semantics, syntax directed assertional proof systems, soundness proofs of the proof systems, program transformations, correctness proofs of the program transformations, and correctness proofs of a substantial example. Each chapter is developed in a systematic and easy-to-understand manner and closes with a list of exercises. The material presented here draws on work which until now was only available in the form of advanced research publications. A large portion of the material is entirely new. This book provides an introduction to the subject which also will lead to current research problems in the areas considered.

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From the Back Cover:

Computer programs are an indispensable part of many of the systems we rely upon in our daily lives, and the proper functioning and safety of these systems is of paramount importance. The development of methods that ensure program correctness is therefore a key challenge for computer scientists.

This widely anticipated third edition of Verification of Sequential and Concurrent Programs provides a systematic exploration of one of the most common approaches to program verification, known as the "assertional" approach. Following the successful formula of previous editions, this approach is applied to deterministic and nondeterministic sequential programs of varying complexity, together with both parallel and distributed concurrent programs. The expanded content of this thorough new edition also includes coverage of the verification of object-oriented programs. For each class of programs, the authors introduce an operational semantics and proof systems for the verification of partial and total correctness, justified formally in corresponding soundness theorems. Case studies supplied throughout the book demonstrate the use of the proof systems to formally verify solutions to classical problems, such as sorting, manipulation of lists, producer/consumer and mutual exclusion.

Topics and Features:

  • Includes a thorough introductory section, familiarizing the reader with the basic concepts and notation used in the book, as well as the book’s structure
  • Explains Hoare’s approach to program verification for while programs, providing a correctness proof of a program for partitioning an array (NEW)
  • Concludes each chapter with exercises and bibliographic remarks for further reading
  • Discusses recursive programs that extend deterministic programs by parameterless procedures and procedures with the call-by-value parameter mechanism, and provides a correctness proof of the quicksort program (NEW)
  • Explores nondeterministic and distributed programs, presenting a verification method of distributed programs based on a transformation into nondeterministic ones
  • Presents object-oriented programs, with a focus on the main characteristics of objects (NEW)
  • Investigates parallel programs with shared variables and with synchronization
  • Studies the issue of fairness in the framework of nondeterministic programs, using an approach based on the method of explicit schedulers
  • Includes a Foreword by Professor Amir Pnueli

This modern update of a classic, reader-friendly textbook is perfect for an introductory course on program verification for advanced undergraduate or graduate students, and may also be used as an introduction to operational semantics. Outlines for possible courses are suggested in the Preface to the book. This book is unique in addressing assertional verification of all essential classes of imperative programs: while programs, recursive programs, object-oriented programs, nondeterministic programs, parallel programs, and distributed programs.


"The Third Edition is an excellent new version of a valuable book. Enhanced with new material on recursion and object-oriented programs, this book now covers methods for verifying sequential, object-oriented, and concurrent programs using well-chosen sample programming languages that highlight fundamental issues and avoid incidental complications. With growing challenges today to produce correct software systems for the future, this book lets students wisely use a few months now to master concepts that will last them a lifetime." (John C. Mitchell, Stanford University)

"Verification of programs is the Holy Grail of Computer Science. This book makes its pursuit seem both pleasant and worthwhile. Its unique strength lies in the way the authors have deconstructed the apparently complex subject such that each piece carries exactly one idea. The beauty of the presentation extends from the overall structure of the book to the individual explanations, definitions and proofs." (Andreas Podelski, University of Freiburg)

"Program verification became an interesting research topic of computing science about forty years ago. Research literature on this topic has grown quickly in accordance with rapid development of various programming paradigms. Therefore it has been a challenge to university lecturers on program verification how to carefully select an easy but comprehensive approach, which can fit in with most programming paradigms and can be taught in a systematic way. The publication of this book is an answer to the challenge, and to my knowledge quite many university lecturers have been influenced by the earlier editions of this book if not chosen them as textbook. Given that the third edition includes verification of object-oriented programs – the most fashionable programming paradigm, and presents it in a way coherent with the approach adopted by the earlier ones, we can expect a further impact of the new edition on university teachings." (Zhou Chaochen, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing)

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Krzysztof R. Apt, Ernst-Rudiger Olderog
Published by Springer-Verlag (1991)
ISBN 10: 0387975322 ISBN 13: 9780387975320
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