
Schedule
Fall 2017
Lectures
(4032FUIN6H):
11:0012:45, room Snellius B01
Practica (4032FUIN6W): 13:3015:15 room Snellius B01 
Goal
The course gives an introduction is an introduction to the theory of computation with emphasis on the relationships between formal languages, automata and abstract models of computation.
Description
Automata theory and formal languages form the foundations of theoretical computer science, as they allow us to talk precisely about what is an algorithm or a computation.
An automaton is in fact a model of computation that can be defined mathematically. The simplest model that we will consider in this course is given by finite state automaton: a machine that is only able to keep track of its current state but it has no memory. Finite state automata specify an algorithmic procedure for recognizing whether a word is in a language. We will concentrate on the relationships between language recognized by a finite state automaton, language generated by a grammar and language described by a specification, and will obtain algorithms for translating one description of a language into another description of a different type.
Adding restricted form of memory to finite state automata increase their expressivity. We will study pushdown automata, i.e. the class of automata with an auxiliary memory organized as a stack. In particular we will concentrate on the class of languages recognized by pushdown automata, because of its major role in compiler design and parsing.
Literature
Schedule Lectures
Nun  Date  Topic  Reading  Exercises* 
1a  5 Sep  Overview and motivation  

1b  
Languages  [Mar10]:1.4  1.33, 1.36, 1.37 
1c  Deterministic Finite Automata (DFA)  [Mar10]:2.1  2.1, 2.2, 2.5  
1d  Automata constructions  [Mar10]:2.2  2.10, 2.11, 2.12  
12 Sep  No class  
2a  19 Sep 
Distinguishability  [Mar10]:2.3  2.13, 2.14, 2.21 
2b 
Pumping lemma for Regular Languages  [Mar10]:2.4  2.22  
Homework 1  Solution  Deadline:26 September  
3a  26 Sep  Indistinguishability and DFA  [Mar10]:2.5  2.33, 2.36 
3b 

Minimal DFA  [Mar10]:2.6  2.55, 2.57 
4a  10 Oct 
Regular Expressions (RE)  [Mar10]:3.1  3.1(a,d), 3.3(a,b,c), 3.6, 3.7(k,l,m,n), 3.10 
4b  Nondeterministic automata (NFA)  [Mar10]:3.2  3.18, 3.44  
Homework 2  Solution  Deadline:17 October  
5a 
17 Oct  From RE to
NFALambda 
[Mar10]:3.4 
3.41, 3.49 
5b  From NFA\Lambda to NFA  [Mar10]:3.3  3.22(a,b,d), 3.37 

5c  From NFA to DFA  [Mar10]:3.3  3.38, 3.40 

31 Oct  No class  
6a 
1 Nov 
From FA to RE: The
L(i,j,k) method 
[Mar10]:3.5 
3.51 (b) 
6b 
From FA to RE: the
algebraic method 
Notes 1: sect 5 
3.51 (a) 

6c 
From FA
to From FA
to RE: the
state removal method 
Notes 2 
3.51
(c) 

Homework 3  Solution 
Deadline: 31 October 

7a  8 Nov  Context free grammars (CFG)  [Mar10]:4.1,4.2  4.1, 4.3 
7b  Regular grammars
(RG) and regular language 
[Mar10]:4.3  4.26, 4.27, 4.29 

14 Nov  No class  
21 Nov  No class  
8a  28 Nov  Ambiguity of CFG 
[Mar10]:4.4  4.34, 4.36, 4.38 
8b  
Chomsky normal form  [Mar10]:4.5  4.48, 4.49 
Homework 4  Solution 
Deadline: 5 December 

9a  5 Dec  Pushdown automata (PDA)  [Mar10]:5.1  5.1, 5.3, 5.4, 5.6 
9b  
Deterministic Pushdown automata 
[Mar10]:5.2  5.10, 5.13,
5.15 
9c 
PDA accepting by
empty stack 
[Mar10]:5.4 

Homework 5  Solution  Deadline: 19 December  
10a  12 Dec  From CFG to PDA (topdown construction) 
[Mar10]:5.3  5.28b, 5.38a 
10b  From CFG to PDA (bottomup construction) 
[Mar10]:5.3  5.34a  
10c  From one statePDA to CFG  [Mar10]:5.4  5.32, 5.36  
19 Dec  No class 
*=Solutions of most of the exercises treated in the practicum can be found either at the end of the book [Mar10] (in bold) or here.
Bibliography
[BBCF10] Jean Berstel, Luc Boasson, Olivier Carton, and Isabelle Fagnot, Minimization of automata, arXiv:1010.5318v3 [cs.FL] 30 Dec 2010.[CZ02] J.M. Champarnaud and D. Ziadi, Canonical Derivatives, Partial Derivatives and Finite Automaton Constructions. Theoretical Computer Science 289(1):137163, Elsevier Science , 2002.
[Mar10] John C. Martin, Introduction to Languages and the Theory of Computation, 4th Revised edition, McGraw Hill Higher Education, 2010.
Exam and
Homework information
 Examination is worth 70% of the final grade (with a minimum of 5.5). The remaining 30% is from the average grade of the 4 best out of the 5 homeworks.
 Write clearly your name and student number in your homework solution.
 Return your homework solution as a single pdf file by email to Larissa Wolters.
 Name your pdf file containing the solution as HWxxNameSurname.pdf, where xx ranges from 1 to 5 and it is the number of homework.
 Solutions
sent after the deadlines are not accepted.
 Grades of the homeworks will be
published on blackboard.
Past Examinations
 January 2016 (solutions) and March 2016 (solutions)
 January 2017 (solutions) and March 2017 (solutions)
 January 2018 (solutions) and March 2018 (solutions)