Istituto di Scienza e Tecnologie dell'Informazione     
De Nicola R. Extensional equivalences for transition systems. Internal note IEI-B4-41, 1986.
Various notions of systems equivalence based on the reactions of systems to stimuli from the outside world are presented and compared. These notions have been proposed in the literature to allow abstraction from unwanted details in models of concurrent end communicating systems. The equivalences, already defined for different theories of concurrency, wi11 be compared by adapting their definitions to labelled transition systems, a model which underlies many others. In the presentation of each equivalence, the aspects of system behaviours which are ignored and the identifications which are forced will be stressed. It will be shown that many equivalences, although defined very differently by following different intuitions about systems behaviour, turn out to be the same or to differ only in minor detail for a large class of transition systems.
We illustrate LOTOS, a language for the formal specification of distributed, concurrent systems. A system is seen as a set of processes which interact with each other, exchange data, and offer potential interactions with the environment. LOTOS supports the modular description of the internal, dynamically variable structure of a system, although the semantics of a specification only refers to the temporal behaviour of the specified system as observable from the external environment. LOTOS is expected to become an ISO International Standard by 1988.
Subject Concurrent languages
FormaI description techniques
Protocol specification
Specification languages

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