Questions tagged [lambda-calculus]

λ-calculus is a formal system for function definition, function application and recursion which forms the mathematical basis of functional programming.

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Can a calculus have incremental copying and closed scopes?

A few days ago, I proposed the Abstract Calculus, a minimal untyped language that is very similar to the Lambda Calculus, except for the main difference that substitutions are ...
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Advantages of algorithm W over algorithm J for type inference in Hindley-Milner type system

According to A modern eye on ML type inference Furthermore, for some unknown reason, W appears to have become more popular than J, even though the latter is viewed—with reason!—by Milner as ...
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When can you “invert” an equation in the lambda calculus

Suppose that $M$ is a full model of the simply typed lambda calculus. Suppose each base type is infinite. Now suppose that $f$ and $g$ are two functions in $M$ (not necessarily in the same domain) ...
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Using naturality to prove $f: \forall\alpha. \alpha\times\alpha\to\alpha$ must be a projection

Suppose we have a System F term $f : \forall \alpha. \alpha\times\alpha\to\alpha$, interpreted in a parametric model which is a bicartesian closed category. I was wondering if in such context it is ...
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33 views

Unbounded-time programs in lambda calculus?

The Turing machine model has been extended to “infinitary turing machines”, which are Turing machines that can perform a countably and uncountably infinite amount of computations in finite time. Is ...
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73 views

Are there simple core languages which are consistent and expressive?

The Calculus of Constructions is a very simple core functional language with dependent types. Per curry-howard isomorphism, it could, potentially, be very useful for writing programs and proofs. It, ...
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839 views

Barendregt's Variable Convention: what does it mean?

Barendregt's Variable Convention: If $M_1,...,M_n$ occur in a certain mathematical context (e.g. definition, proof), then in these terms all bound variables are chosen to be different from the free ...
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337 views

Capture Avoiding Substitution of multiple variables at once

In articles you often find the terminus "capture avoiding substitution" that saves the author(s) from the tedious process to re-define a recursive function -including alpha-conversion and the ...
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58 views

Is it possible to reduce functional equations to SAT?

The problem of finding a solution for functional equations can be defined as: Let A0, A1, A2... An, B0, B1, B2... Bn, X be terms of the lambda calculus, all terms known, except for X, unknown. ...
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96 views

Bounded existential polymorphism

In his "Types and Programming Languages", Pierce, at the very end, presents the most powerful system in the book: $F^{\omega}_{<:}$. He, however, does not explain how bounded existential ...
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428 views

Test cases for λ-Calculus

For testing automated theorem provers we have Seventy-Five Problems for Testing Automatic Theorem Provers by Pelletier. Are there any such standard/well regarded tests for a λ-calculus that verify ...
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99 views

Where is typed lambda calculus on the Chomsky hiererchy?

The functions definable in untyped lambda calculus are the computable functions, for which it is in turn possible to define equivalences to the concepts of Turing machines, recursive enumerability and ...
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42 views

Rules for consistency with mutual inductive families?

I'm trying to use a proof assistant to define a type and a relation that are mutually dependent on each other: ...
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79 views

Difference between “functional programming languages” and “lambda calculus based languages”?

In "Can programming be liberated from the Von Neumann Style?", John Backus states: The main reason FP systems are considerably simpler than either conventional languages or lambda-calculus-based ...
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75 views

What is a “model” of lambda calculus?

I know about the concept of the "model" of a logical proposition in the context of mathematical logic: It is a mathematical structure in which that proposition is true. However, it's not clear to me ...
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85 views

How could one write typing rules with variables defined at call-site?

I'm trying to write typing rules for a simple language, which is basically a lambda calculus with SSA-like $\phi$-nodes, which basically exchange formal parameters for actual parameters. For ...
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134 views

Characterization of alpha-equivalence in languages with bindings

Following up on this post denoting $(x \leftrightarrow y)$ the permutation of $x$ and $y$ and $P[x \leftrightarrow y]$ the term obtained from the term $P$ by permuting $x$ and $y$ (so for example if $...
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Prove that turing machines and the lambda calculus are equivalent

It is known that a turing machine and the lambda calculus are equivalent in power. I now want to try to prove this myself. I think proving that the lambda calculus is at least as powerful as a turing ...
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68 views

Does type-1 lambda calculus exist?

I'm interested in the intersection of linguistics and computer science, I've been reading on Chomsky hierarchy, and would like to know if there exist lambda calculus types that are equivalent to the ...
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144 views

How shall I understand the definitions of `let` expression?

let as used in programming languages is defined in lambda calculus as per https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Let_expression#Let_definition_defined_from_lambda_calculus ...
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811 views

Examples of the axes of the lambda cube

The Wikipedia article https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lambda_cube is difficult to assimilate. I think examples (code snippets) that demonstrate each refinement might help clarify. For instance, a ...
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548 views

How does this left-associative recursive descent parser work?

For personal enlightenment, I'm trying to write a recursive descent parser for lambda calculus without abstraction, i.e., just identifiers and function application. The BNF grammar that describes the ...
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38 views

Computational complexity of emulating (untyped) λ-calculus with a queue machine

I am looking for bounds - both lower and upper - on the time, spacial, and state/symbol (i.e. number of states and symbols required) complexity of simulating the (untyped) λ-calculus with a queue ...
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Is there an abstract architecture equivalent to Von Neumann's for Lambda expressions?

In other words, was a physical implementation modelling lambda calculus (so not built on top of a Von Neumann machine) ever devised? Even if just on paper? If there was, what was it? Did we make use ...
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21 views

Standardisation Theorem versus Leftmost reduction Theorem

According to Chris Hankin in his book (Lambda Calculus a Guide for Computer Scientists). A reduction sequence $\sigma: M_0 \to^{\Delta_0} M_1 \to^{\Delta_1}M_2 \to^{\Delta_2}\ldots $ is a standard ...
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70 views

Is it true that if $M : \forall \alpha . \left( \alpha \rightarrow \alpha \right)$ is a closed term then $M = \Lambda \alpha. \lambda x^{\alpha} . x$?

In system F, is every closed term $M$, which is of $\forall \alpha . \left( \alpha \rightarrow \alpha \right)$, $\alpha \beta \eta$-equivalent to $\Lambda \alpha. \lambda x^{\alpha} . x$? I have ...
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60 views

Calculus of constructions, type-in-type and recursion

Does adding type-in-type to the calculus of constructions lead to (general) recursion? Such that one can write the Y combinator.
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137 views

Type inference for System F-omega

There have been some nice papers about simple type inference for System F: "HMF: Simple Type Inference for First-Class Polymorphism", "Practical type inference for arbitrary-rank types", and "Complete ...
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1answer
141 views

Efficient algorithm to determine if a lambda calculus term is equivalent to one without a given free variable

Consider the following problem: given a lambda calculus term $t$ and free variable $v$ determine whether $\phi(t,v)$, where $\phi(t,v) := \exists t'. t' \equiv t \land v \notin FV(t')$. This problem ...
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265 views

CFG for $\lambda$-calculus with minimal parentheses

The typical presentation of the syntax of the $\lambda$-calculus is as an ambiguous CFG (or BNF) like the following: $$T \rightarrow \lambda X . T \mid T ~ T \mid X \mid (T)$$ Where we permit $X$ to ...
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49 views

Expressing definite clauses (Horn rules, logic programming) in lambda terms?

There is paper which expresses lambda terms in the terms of logic programming http://www.cse.unt.edu/~tarau/teaching/PL/docs/dbx.pdf Is there conversion in the other direction - expressing definite ...
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138 views

Semantic parsing with Grammatical Framework - is this possible?

So far I have learned about categorial grammars, type logical grammars and formal semantics of natural language, the relevant tools are Cornell Semantic Parsing Framework https://github.com/clic-lab/...
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58 views

Is the number of tests needed to know if a program computes the identity computable?

Given a $\lambda$-term $t\in \Lambda$ and an integer $k$, we say that $t$ behave likes the identity when applied to $k$ if $tk\to_\beta^*k$ (where the integer is represented as a church numeral). We ...
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94 views

How to translate lambda calculus into (first-order, modal) logic, is it possible at all?

It is possible (using formal semantics) to translate natural language sentences into lambda expressions. So, is it possible to translate those lambda expressions into some logic, e.g. into first-order ...
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160 views

$\lambda$-terms equal modulo $\alpha$-renaming, is this an equivalence relation?

Want to clarify few things. It is said that two $\lambda$-terms are equal up to renaming of bound variables, such as $\lambda x.x$ equals $\lambda y.y$, so I think it is a relation actually, about ...
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116 views

Efficient explicit-substitution calculus

I've been looking at various calculus with explicit substitutions for efficient implementation of normalisation of terms in the lambda calculus. AFAICT there are basically two approaches: the λσ ...
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63 views

What is the intuition behind a λ-term being EAL-Typeable?

λ-terms can be split in two categories: EAL and non-EAL typeable terms. It is known not only that EAL-typeable terms can be reduced to normal form in polynomial time, but that the reduction can be ...
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212 views

How does this addition for Church numerals work with Y combinator?

I am currently preparing for an exam. In one of the old exams, you have to create a $\lambda$ expression $add$ that can add two church numerals. But the church numerals are not the usual ones, but ...
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46 views

How do stable functions 1 => 1 relate to Bool?

One way to interpret the (simply typed) lambda calculus is via coherence spaces (Proofs and Types, chapter 8). For example, we can consider the space containing token element ($\mathbf{1}$) and the ...
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157 views

Is there any programming system that enables reversible computations?

Better explained with examples, I need a programming system with the following characteristics: ...
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613 views

λ-Calculus extensions: meaning of extension symbols

When working with λ-Calculus I see lots of extensions that use other symbols such as ∀ <:Top {} ←, which are from "Types and Programming Languages" (WorldCat) by Benjamin C. Pierce. ...
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15 views

Reducing Kleene's predecessor for Church numerals

I am trying to "reinvent" Kleene's predecessor myself. The following code snippet should be self-explanatory. The idea is to make a 2-tuple and count up from zero, i.e. ...
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46 views

Normal Order Reduction - is Leftmost Outermost order simply Leftmost?

This is a quick question. I've been reading up on Lambda Calculus, and I see Normal Order as "outermost leftmost first", and Applicative Order described as as "innermost leftmost first". I think ...
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22 views

Blum complexity measure for lambda calculus

Is there a formal complexity measure for lambda expressions which satisfies the Blum axioms and measures the complexity of reducing the expression to its normal form? I assume that the complexity ...
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61 views

Lambda terms forming non-abelian groups

I was wondering what kind of groups could be constructed with Lambda terms, where the group operation is application? For example, $a* b =c$ would mean $ab\to_{\beta}^{*} c$. Is this even possible? ...
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1answer
51 views

An operational semantics for lambda-calculus normal order evaluation strategy

TAPL book, page 56 reads: Under the normal order strategy, the leftmost, outermost redex is always reduced first. I understand this as a restriction of the full beta-reduction evaluation ...
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38 views

Are isomorphic (untyped) lambda expressions semantically equivalent?

"Isomorphic" is defined as having the same shape of syntax trees and the same bindings of variables. However, the variable names might be completely different. In other words, it is to say that we ...
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Construct a lambda term from a Böhm tree

Given an acyclic graph, how can I build a lambda calculus term such that this graph is the term's Böhm tree? If the Böhm tree is a finite tree (so the result is a strongly normalizing term). If the ...
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1answer
116 views

Elegant algorithm to semi-decide if two lambda calculus terms are equivalent

Given two lambda terms $t_1$ and $t_2$, it is semi-decidable if they are equivalent (i.e. can be rewritten as each other using alpha, beta, and eta conversions). An algorithm to do this is to try ...