Acta Informatica

, Volume 10, Issue 1, pp 27–52

The algebraic specification of abstract data types


  • J. V. Guttag
    • Computer Science DepartmentUniversity of Southern California
  • J. J. Horning
    • Computer Systems Research GroupUniversity of Toronto

DOI: 10.1007/BF00260922

Cite this article as:
Guttag, J.V. & Horning, J.J. Acta Informatica (1978) 10: 27. doi:10.1007/BF00260922


There have been many recent proposals for embedding abstract data types in programming languages. In order to reason about programs using abstract data types, it is desirable to specify their properties at an abstract level, independent of any particular implementation. This paper presents an algebraic technique for such specifications, develops some of the formal properties of the technique, and shows that these provide useful guidelines for the construction of adequate specifications.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1978