Question:The set of all first names given to children born in New Zealand in 1996

I think this language is regular because every element in the set can be a accept state

How can I prove if the language is regular?


Every finite language is regular. The easiest way to prove it is to build the regular expression $w_1+w_2+\dots+w_n$ where $\{w_1,\dots,w_n\}$ is you finite language.

You can also build an automaton as you said. May be build a separate one for each word and the do a finite union is the easiest.

  • $\begingroup$ Just in case: $+$ is also $|$ in regular expression notation. $\endgroup$ – Alejandro Sazo May 26 '13 at 23:35

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