# Questions tagged [regular-languages]

Questions about properties of the class of regular languages and individual languages.

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### How to prove that a language is not regular?

We learned about the class of regular languages $\mathrm{REG}$. It is characterised by any one concept among regular expressions, finite automata and left-linear grammars, so it is easy to show that a ...
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### How to prove a language is regular?

There are many methods to prove that a language is not regular, but what do I need to do to prove that some language is regular? For instance, if I am given that $L$ is regular, how can I prove that ...
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### How do I find a regular expression for a particular language?

I have a language, and I want to find a regular expression for the language. How do I do that? Is there a step-by-step, systematic procedure for that? Pretend I am just learning this topic; what ...
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### What are the possible sets of word lengths in a regular language?

Given a language $L$, define the length set of $L$ as the set of lengths of words in $L$: $$\mathrm{LS}(L) = \{|u| \mid u \in L \}$$ Which sets of integers can be the length set of a regular language?...
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### Single-tape Turing Machines with write-protected input recognize only Regular Languages

Here is the problem: Prove that single-tape Turing Machines that cannot write on the portion of the tape containing the input string recognize only regular languages. My idea is to prove that this ...
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### How hard is finding the shortest path in a graph matching a given regular language?

Suppose we are given a directed graph $G = (V, E)$ with edge weights $w : E \rightarrow \mathbb{R}$ (we can assume there are no negative cycles) and edge labels $\ell : E \rightarrow \Sigma$ from some ...
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### Pumping lemma for simple finite regular languages

Wikipedia has the following definition of the pumping lemma for regular langauges... Let $L$ be a regular language. Then there exists an integer $p$ ≥ 1 depending only on $L$ such that every ...
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### Is $A$ regular if $A^{2}$ is regular?

If $A^2$ is regular, does it follow that $A$ is regular? My attempt on a proof: Yes, for contradiction assume that $A$ is not regular. Then $A^2 = A \cdot A$. Since concatenation of two non-regular ...
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### Is {wxw^r} a regular language?

Is $\{ WxW^{\mathrm{R}} \mid W,x\in\{0,1\}^+\}$ a regular language? If so, why? The notation $W^{\mathrm{R}}$ means the reverse string of $W$? If we consider the best answer in this solution, ...
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### Language of the values of an affine function

Write $\bar n$ for the decimal expansion of $n$ (with no leading 0). Let $a$ and $b$ be integers, with $a > 0$. Consider the language of the decimal expansions ...
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### Intersection of context free with regular languages

The intersection of a context free language L with a regular language M, is said to be always context free. I understood the cross product construction proof, but I still don't get why it is context ...
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### If $L$ is a regular language then so is $\sqrt{L}=\{w:ww\in L\}$

I am interested in proving that $\sqrt{L}=\{w:ww\in L\}$ is regular if $L$ is regular but I don't seem to be getting anywhere. If possible I was hoping for a hint to get me going in the right ...
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### Pumping lemma: if you can keep pumping, what does this tell you?

Hypothetically, let's say you are using the pumping lemma for either regular or context free languages. Now using either, you come across a case that remains true despite pumping it. In this situation,...
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### DFA for a strings whose every subsequence of length five has at least two zeroes

I have a regular language consisting of such {0,1}^k sequences, in which every subsequence of length 5 has at least two 0's in ...
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### What's wrong with my pumping lemma proof?

The language $L = \{0^{2n} \space |\space n \ge 0 \}$ is obviously regular – for example, it matches the regular expression $(00)^*$. But the following pumping lemma argument seems to show it's ...
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### Determine if this language is regular

Let $L = \{xyx \mid \text{ for some }x,y \in \{0,1\}^+\}$. Is this language regular? So I was trying to construct a DFA, but I don't how to do this with this language.
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### Regularity of “middles” of words from regular language

I need some help with the following problem. Let $L \subseteq \Sigma^*$ be a regular language. I have to prove that the language $P = \{\alpha \mid \beta\alpha\gamma \in L, \beta,\gamma \in \Sigma^*\}$...
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### Why the language of unary primes isn't regular

I have some difficulties proving that the language of unary primes ($L=\{1^p\mid p\text{ is prime}\}$) is not regular using the pumping lemma. Any suggestions?
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### Deriving the regular expression for C-style /**/ comments

I'm working on a parser for a C-style language, and for that parser I need the regular expression that matches C-style /**/ comments. Now, I've found this expression on the web: ...
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### Closure of regular languages to shuffle using closure operations

Given a language: $L = \{\; a_1b_1a_2b_2a_3b_3\dots a_nb_n \mid \forall i: a_i,b_i \in \Sigma, a_1\dots a_n \in L_1\ , b_1\dots b_n \in L_2 \;\}$ Also $L_1, L_2$ are regular languages. Using ...
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### Find a regular language that becomes non-regular if you cut away the middle third of all words

Let $A$ be a regular language, let $A'=\{xz\}$ such that for some $y,|x|=|y|=|z|$ and $xyz\in A$. Show that $A'$ is not necessarily regular language. This is an excercise of Sipser, I've no idea how ...
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### Regular expression for a string not containing a set of substrings

I'm trying to figure out how to build a regular expression for a language that doesn't contain strings that contain $101$ or $001$. The alphabet is defined as $\{0, 1\}$. I'm stuck on trying to figure ...
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### Regular expression of a language over {a,b,c} which does not contain substring bbb

I'm trying to figure out how to build a regular expression for a language that doesn't contain substring bbb. The alphabet is {a,b,c}. I'm trying to construct a DFA and convert to help me get the ...
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### Can regular languages be Turing complete?

I was reading about Iota and Jot and found this section confusing: Unlike Iota, where the syntactic tree for a string can branch either on the left or on the right, Jot syntax is uniformly left-...
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### Are all context-free and regular languages efficiently decidable?

I came across this figure which shows that context-free and regular languages are (proper) subsets of efficient problems (supposedly $\mathrm{P}$). I perfectly understand that efficient problems are a ...
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### Is the language of words containing equal number of 001 and 100 regular?

I was wondering when languages which contained the same number of instances of two substrings would be regular. I know that the language containing equal number of 1s and 0s is not regular, but is a ...
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### Time Complexity of Regular Languages

I wonder how I can go about proving that if a language L is decidable in o(nlog(n)) then L must be regular. I should probably mention that by "decidable" I mean "being decidable by single-tape ...
Let $L = \{a^n \mid n \ge 0\}$, where $a^0 = \epsilon$ and $a^n = a^{n-1}a$ for all $n \ge 1$. Thus $L$ consists of sequences of $a$ of all lengths, including a sequence of length $0$. Let $L_2$ be ...