Faculty Advisor

Daniel J. Dougherty

Faculty Advisor

Joshua Guttman

Faculty Advisor

George Heineman

Faculty Advisor

John D. Ramsdell

Faculty Advisor

Craig Wills

Identifier

etd-043015-110044

Abstract

This thesis presents a framework for understanding first-order theories by investigating their models. A common application is to help users, who are not necessarily experts in formal methods, analyze software artifacts, such as access-control policies, system configurations, protocol specifications, and software designs. The framework suggests a strategy for exploring the space of finite models of a theory via augmentation. Also, it introduces a notion of provenance information for understanding the elements and facts in models with respect to the statements of the theory. The primary mathematical tool is an information-preserving preorder, induced by the homomorphism on models, defining paths along which models are explored. The central algorithmic ideas consists of a controlled construction of the Herbrand base of the input theory followed by utilizing SMT-solving for generating models that are minimal under the homomorphism preorder. Our framework for model-exploration is realized in Razor, a model-finding assistant that provides the user with a read-eval-print loop for investigating models.

Publisher

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Degree Name

PhD

Department

Computer Science

Project Type

Dissertation

Date Accepted

2015-04-30

Accessibility

Unrestricted

Subjects

exploration, finite model-finding, first-order logic, provenance information, Chase, Geometric Logic, Razor, Aluminum

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