By Alan P. Parkes

This easy-to-follow textual content offers an obtainable creation to the most important issues of formal languages and summary machines inside of machine technology. the writer follows the winning formulation of his first booklet in this topic, this time making those middle computing subject matters extra basic and offering a great starting place for undergraduates.

The e-book is split into components, Languages and Machines and Machines and Computation. the 1st half is worried with formal language idea, because it applies to laptop technology, while half 2 considers the computational houses of the machines in additional element. this article is intentionally non-mathematical and, anywhere attainable, hyperlinks concept to functional issues, particularly the results for programming, computation and challenge fixing. Written in an off-the-cuff kind, this textbook assumes just a simple wisdom of programming at the a part of the reader.


• transparent causes of formal notation and jargon

• large use of examples to demonstrate algorithms and proofs

• Pictorial representations of key concepts

• Chapter-opening overviews offering an creation and tips to every topic

• An introductory bankruptcy provides the reader with an exceptional overview

• End-of-chapter routines and solutions

This reader-friendly textbook has been written with undergraduates in brain and may be compatible to be used on classes overlaying formal languages, computability, automata concept and computational linguistics. it's going to additionally make a very good supplementary textual content for classes on set of rules complexity and compilers.

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Additional info for A Concise Introduction to Languages and Machines

Example text

Hint: make sure your grammar generates only the three given strings, and no others. y Use your answer to exercise 9 as the basis for sketching out an intuitive justification that any finite language is regular. e. that every regular language is finite, is certainly not true. To appreciate this, consider the languages specified in exercise 4. All three languages are both regular and infinite. 1 Overview In this chapter, we consider the following aspects of formal languages, and their particular relevance to programming languages: l the syntax, or grammatical structure, of a sentence l the semantics, or meaning, of a sentence l the graphical representation of derivations by structures called derivation trees l parsing, or trying to discover the grammatical structure of a given sentence l ambiguity, when a sentence in a formal language has more than one possible meaning.

E. S ! aSb j ab and the problem of producing the parse tree for aaabbb. The ‘‘reductions’’ version of G3, called G3red, is as follows: aSb ! S ab ! S: We start with our sentencex, and seek a left-hand side of one of the reductions that matches some substring of x. We replace that substring by the right-hand side of the chosen reduction, and so on. We terminate when we reach a string consisting only of S. 4, since only one reduction will be applicable at each stage. 4, there was never a point at which we had to make a choice between several applicable reductions.

11. A new term is now introduced to simplify references to the intermediate stages in a derivation. We call these intermediate stages sentential forms. Formally, given any grammar, G, a sentential form is any string that can be derived in zero or more steps from the start symbol, S. By ‘‘any string’’, we mean exactly that; not only terminal strings, but any string of terminals and/or non-terminals. Thus, a sentence is a sentential form, but a sentential form is not necessarily a sentence. Given the simple grammar S !

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