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Saarland University Computer Science

Incremental Decision Procedures for Modal Logics with Nominals and Eventualities

Mark Kaminski

PhD Thesis, Saarland University, February 2012

This thesis contributes to the study of incremental decision procedures for modal logics with nominals and eventualities. Eventualities are constructs that allow to reason about the reflexive-transitive closure of relations. Eventualities are an essential feature of temporal logics and propositional dynamic logic (PDL). Nominals extend modal logics with the possibility to reason about state equality. Modal logics with nominals are often called hybrid logics. Incremental procedures are procedures that can potentially solve a problem by performing only the reasoning steps needed for the problem in the underlying calculus.
We begin by introducing a class of syntactic models called demos and showing how demos can be used for obtaining nonincremental but worst-case optimal decision procedures for extensions of PDL with nominals, converse and difference modalities. We show that in the absence of nominals, such nonincremental procedures can be refined into incremental demo search procedures, obtaining a worst-case optimal decision procedure for modal logic with eventualities. We then develop the first incremental decision procedure for basic hybrid logic with eventualities, which we eventually extend to deal with hybrid PDL.
The approach in the thesis suggests a new principled design of modular, incremental decision procedures for expressive modal logics. In particular, it yields the first incremental procedures for modal logics containing both nominals and eventualities.

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