Selected Papers of the Thirty-Fourth and Thirty-Fifth Annual ACM/IEEE Symposium on Logic in Computer Science (LICS 2019 and 2020)

Editors: Anuj Dawar, Naoki Kobayashi, Orna Kupferman, and Prakash Panangaden

This special issue contains revised and extended versions of papers presented at the 34th Annual IEEE Symposium on Logic in Computer Science (LICS 2019), held in Vancouver in June 2019, and at the 35th Annual IEEE Symposium on Logic in Computer Science (LICS 2020), held online in July 2020. A small number of papers from the proceedings were selected and their authors were invited to submit a full version of their paper to this special issue. Their topics span a range of topics typically represented at LICS: automata theory, category theory, logics, trace semantics, type theory, and verification.

All submissions were refereed according to the usual standards of Logical Methods in Computer Science. We are grateful to the authors for their excellent submissions and to the reviewers for their efforts to evaluate and improve these papers. We also thank the program committee members and their subreviewers who reviewed the original conference submissions for their work.

Patricia Bouyer, Anuj Dawar, Kousha Etessami,
Naoki Kobayashi, Orna Kupferman and Prakash Panangaden
LICS 2019 and LICS 2020 Guest Editors

1. The Complexity of Reachability in Affine Vector Addition Systems with States

Michael Blondin ; Mikhail Raskin.
Vector addition systems with states (VASS) are widely used for the formal verification of concurrent systems. Given their tremendous computational complexity, practical approaches have relied on techniques such as reachability relaxations, e.g., allowing for negative intermediate counter values. It is natural to question their feasibility for VASS enriched with primitives that typically translate into undecidability. Spurred by this concern, we pinpoint the complexity of integer relaxations with respect to arbitrary classes of affine operations. More specifically, we provide a trichotomy on the complexity of integer reachability in VASS extended with affine operations (affine VASS). Namely, we show that it is NP-complete for VASS with resets, PSPACE-complete for VASS with (pseudo-)transfers and VASS with (pseudo-)copies, and undecidable for any other class. We further present a dichotomy for standard reachability in affine VASS: it is decidable for VASS with permutations, and undecidable for any other class. This yields a complete and unified complexity landscape of reachability in affine VASS. We also consider the reachability problem parameterized by a fixed affine VASS, rather than a class, and we show that the complexity landscape is arbitrary in this setting.

2. Multimodal Dependent Type Theory

Daniel Gratzer ; G. A. Kavvos ; Andreas Nuyts ; Lars Birkedal.
We introduce MTT, a dependent type theory which supports multiple modalities. MTT is parametrized by a mode theory which specifies a collection of modes, modalities, and transformations between them. We show that different choices of mode theory allow us to use the same type theory to compute and reason in many modal situations, including guarded recursion, axiomatic cohesion, and parametric quantification. We reproduce examples from prior work in guarded recursion and axiomatic cohesion, thereby demonstrating that MTT constitutes a simple and usable syntax whose instantiations intuitively correspond to previous handcrafted modal type theories. In some cases, instantiating MTT to a particular situation unearths a previously unknown type theory that improves upon prior systems. Finally, we investigate the metatheory of MTT. We prove the consistency of MTT and establish canonicity through an extension of recent type-theoretic gluing techniques. These results hold irrespective of the choice of mode theory, and thus apply to a wide variety of modal situations.

3. Successor-Invariant First-Order Logic on Classes of Bounded Degree

Julien Grange.
We study the expressive power of successor-invariant first-order logic, which is an extension of first-order logic where the usage of an additional successor relation on the structure is allowed, as long as the validity of formulas is independent of the choice of a particular successor on finite structures. We show that when the degree is bounded, successor-invariant first-order logic is no more expressive than first-order logic.

4. No-Go Theorems for Distributive Laws

Maaike Zwart ; Dan Marsden.
Monads are commonplace in computer science, and can be composed using Beck's distributive laws. Unfortunately, finding distributive laws can be extremely difficult and error-prone. The literature contains some general principles for constructing distributive laws. However, until now there have been no such techniques for establishing when no distributive law exists. We present three families of theorems for showing when there can be no distributive law between two monads. The first widely generalizes a counterexample attributed to Plotkin. It covers all the previous known no-go results for specific pairs of monads, and includes many new results. The second and third families are entirely novel, encompassing various new practical situations. For example, they negatively resolve the open question of whether the list monad distributes over itself, reveal a previously unobserved error in the literature, and confirm a conjecture made by Beck himself in his first paper on distributive laws. In addition, we establish conditions under which there can be at most one possible distributive law between two monads, proving various known distributive laws to be unique.

5. Register Automata with Extrema Constraints, and an Application to Two-Variable Logic

Szymon Toruńczyk ; Thomas Zeume.
We introduce a model of register automata over infinite trees with extrema constraints. Such an automaton can store elements of a linearly ordered domain in its registers, and can compare those values to the suprema and infima of register values in subtrees. We show that the emptiness problem for these automata is decidable. As an application, we prove decidability of the countable satisfiability problem for two-variable logic in the presence of a tree order, a linear order, and arbitrary atoms that are MSO definable from the tree order. As a consequence, the satisfiability problem for two-variable logic with arbitrary predicates, two of them interpreted by linear orders, is decidable.

6. The Theory of Traces for Systems with Nondeterminism, Probability, and Termination

Filippo Bonchi ; Ana Sokolova ; Valeria Vignudelli.
This paper studies trace-based equivalences for systems combining nondeterministic and probabilistic choices. We show how trace semantics for such processes can be recovered by instantiating a coalgebraic construction known as the generalised powerset construction. We characterise and compare the resulting semantics to known definitions of trace equivalences appearing in the literature. Most of our results are based on the exciting interplay between monads and their presentations via algebraic theories.

7. Linear Dependent Type Theory for Quantum Programming Languages

Peng Fu ; Kohei Kishida ; Peter Selinger.
Modern quantum programming languages integrate quantum resources and classical control. They must, on the one hand, be linearly typed to reflect the no-cloning property of quantum resources. On the other hand, high-level and practical languages should also support quantum circuits as first-class citizens, as well as families of circuits that are indexed by some classical parameters. Quantum programming languages thus need linear dependent type theory. This paper defines a general semantic structure for such a type theory via certain fibrations of monoidal categories. The categorical model of the quantum circuit description language Proto-Quipper-M by Rios and Selinger (2017) constitutes an example of such a fibration, which means that the language can readily be integrated with dependent types. We then devise both a general linear dependent type system and a dependently typed extension of Proto-Quipper-M, and provide them with operational semantics as well as a prototype implementation.

8. An Analytic Propositional Proof System on Graphs

Matteo Acclavio ; Ross Horne ; Lutz Straßburger.
In this paper we present a proof system that operates on graphs instead of formulas. Starting from the well-known relationship between formulas and cographs, we drop the cograph-conditions and look at arbitrary undirected) graphs. This means that we lose the tree structure of the formulas corresponding to the cographs, and we can no longer use standard proof theoretical methods that depend on that tree structure. In order to overcome this difficulty, we use a modular decomposition of graphs and some techniques from deep inference where inference rules do not rely on the main connective of a formula. For our proof system we show the admissibility of cut and a generalisation of the splitting property. Finally, we show that our system is a conservative extension of multiplicative linear logic with mix, and we argue that our graphs form a notion of generalised connective.