Expressivity within second-order transitive-closure logic

Autoren Flavio Ferrarotti
Jan Van den Bussche
Jonni Virtema
Titel Expressivity within second-order transitive-closure logic
Buchtitel Proceedings of the 27th EACSL Annual Conference on Computer Science Logic (CSL 2018)
Typ in Konferenzband
Verlag Schloss Dagstuhl-Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik
Serie Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPICS)
Band 119
ISBN 978-3-95977-088-0
DOI 10.4230/LIPIcs.CSL.2018.22
Monat September
Jahr 2018
Seiten 22:1-22:18
SCCH ID# 18051

Second-order transitive-closure logic, SO(TC), is an expressive declarative language that captures the complexity class PSPACE. Already its monadic fragment, MSO(TC), allows the expression of various NP-hard and even PSPACE-hard problems in a natural and elegant manner. As SO(TC) offers an attractive framework for expressing properties in terms of declaratively specified computations, it is interesting to understand the expressivity of different features of the language. This paper focuses on the fragment MSO(TC), as well on the purely existential fragment SO(2TC)(exists); in 2TC, the TC operator binds only tuples of relation variables. We establish that, with respect to expressive power, SO(2TC)(exists) collapses to existential first-order logic. In addition we study the relationship of MSO(TC) to an extension of MSO(TC) with counting features (CMSO(TC)) as well as to order-invariant MSO. We show that the expressive powers of CMSO(TC) and MSO(TC) coincide. Moreover we establish that, over unary vocabularies, MSO(TC) strictly subsumes order-invariant MSO.