University of Birmingham > Talks@bham > Theoretical computer science seminar > Compositional algebras of C/E and P/T nets

Compositional algebras of C/E and P/T nets

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  • UserPawel Sobocinski, University of Southampton
  • ClockFriday 30 November 2012, 16:00-17:00
  • HouseUG05 Learning Centre.

If you have a question about this talk, please contact Paul Levy.

My research concerns algebras (sets of operations) with which one can compose concurrent systems in ways which guarantee that the behaviour of the whole system is a function of the behaviour of its sub-components—this famous principle of formal semantics is often referred to as “compositionality.” Since 2010 I have developed a family of compositional algebras for different variants (C/E and P/T) of Petri nets together with a family of process calculi that provides a completely syntactic account. The process calculi and the net models are equivalent—there are straightforward translations in both directions that preserve and reflect behaviour. The syntactic way of looking at nets has advantages: for example, the syntax is easier for tools to handle. The process calculi are themselves worthy of attention: for example one passes from the calculus of C/E nets to the calculus of P/T nets by adding a SOS rule that introduces a free additive structure on transition labels.

Petri nets are widely used to model dynamic concurrent computation. Although originally introduced by theoretical computer scientists for studying concurrent computations in machines, they are increasingly used by biologists, biochemists and medical researchers to model concurrent phenomena in their respective physical fields. In fact, physical systems are often networks of interacting simpler components. A compositional algebra of nets will enable researchers to model physical systems compositionally, arriving at a global behaviour by composing well-understood simpler subsystems, and thus allow the use of traditional software engineering principles such as model re-use. From an algorithmic perspective, such algebras make structural decomposition of systems possible and thus open up the possibility of using techniques such as divide and conquer.

This talk is part of the Theoretical computer science seminar series.

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