Logic Characterization of Invisibly Structured Languages: The Case of Floyd Languages
Operator precedence grammars define a classical Boolean and deterministic context-free language family (called Floyd languages or FLs). FLs have been shown to strictly include the well-known Visibly Pushdown Languages, and enjoy the same nice closure properties. In this paper we provide a complete characterization of FLs in terms of a suitable Monadic Second-Order Logic. Traditional approaches to logic characterization of formal languages refer explicitly to the structures over which they are interpreted - e.g, trees or graphs - or to strings that are isomorphic to the structure, as in parenthesis languages. In the case of FLs, instead, the syntactic structure of input strings is “invisible” and must be reconstructed through parsing. This requires that logic formulae encode some typical context-free parsing actions, such as shift-reduce ones.
Keywordsoperator precedence languages deterministic context-free languages monadic second-order logic pushdown automata
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