Inductive * -Semirings

  • Zoltán Ésik
  • Werner Kuich


One of the most well-known induction principles in computer science
is the fixed point induction rule, or least pre-fixed point rule. Inductive
*-semirings are partially ordered semirings equipped with a star operation
satisfying the fixed point equation and the fixed point induction rule for
linear terms. Inductive *-semirings are extensions of continuous semirings
and the Kleene algebras of Conway and Kozen.
We develop, in a systematic way, the rudiments of the theory of inductive
*-semirings in relation to automata, languages and power series.
In particular, we prove that if S is an inductive *-semiring, then so is
the semiring of matrices Sn*n, for any integer n >= 0, and that if S is
an inductive *-semiring, then so is any semiring of power series S((A*)).
As shown by Kozen, the dual of an inductive *-semiring may not be inductive.
In contrast, we show that the dual of an iteration semiring is
an iteration semiring. Kuich proved a general Kleene theorem for continuous
semirings, and Bloom and Esik proved a Kleene theorem for all Conway
semirings. Since any inductive *-semiring is a Conway semiring
and an iteration semiring, as we show, there results a Kleene theorem
applicable to all inductive *-semirings. We also describe the structure
of the initial inductive *-semiring and conjecture that any free inductive
*-semiring may be given as a semiring of rational power series with
coefficients in the initial inductive *-semiring. We relate this conjecture to
recent axiomatization results on the equational theory of the regular sets.
How to Cite
Ésik, Z., & Kuich, W. (2000). Inductive * -Semirings. BRICS Report Series, 7(27).