Formal Languages and Computation: Models and Their Applications

1st Edition

Alexander Meduna

Auerbach Publications
Published February 11, 2014
Textbook - 315 Pages - 59 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9781466513457 - CAT# K14956

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Summary

Formal Languages and Computation: Models and Their Applications gives a clear, comprehensive introduction to formal language theory and its applications in computer science. It covers all rudimental topics concerning formal languages and their models, especially grammars and automata, and sketches the basic ideas underlying the theory of computation, including computability, decidability, and computational complexity. Emphasizing the relationship between theory and application, the book describes many real-world applications, including computer science engineering techniques for language processing and their implementation.

  • Covers the theory of formal languages and their models, including all essential concepts and properties
  • Explains how language models underlie language processors
  • Pays a special attention to programming language analyzers, such as scanners and parsers, based on four language models—regular expressions, finite automata, context-free grammars, and pushdown automata
  • Discusses the mathematical notion of a Turing machine as a universally accepted formalization of the intuitive notion of a procedure
  • Reviews the general theory of computation, particularly computability and decidability
  • Considers problem-deciding algorithms in terms of their computational complexity measured according to time and space requirements
  • Points out that some problems are decidable in principle, but they are, in fact, intractable problems for absurdly high computational requirements of the algorithms that decide them

In short, this book represents a theoretically oriented treatment of formal languages and their models with a focus on their applications. It introduces all formalisms concerning them with enough rigors to make all results quite clear and valid. Every complicated mathematical passage is preceded by its intuitive explanation so that even the most complex parts of the book are easy to grasp. After studying this book, both student and professional should be able to understand the fundamental theory of formal languages and computation, write language processors, and confidently follow most advanced books on the subject.

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