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README.md

parsimony

Hello, stranger! This repository contains papers, tools, and documentation related to the study of parsimonious Turing machine generation. Update: This project depends on Python 2.7 and on ANTLR4, although in order to clone the repository you will also need to have Git. (Assuming you have Python >= 2.7.9 or >= 3.4, you already have pip, Python's package manager, in which case you can install ANTLR4 easily with the command pip install antlr4-python2-runtime. Thanks to Shawn Ligocki for pointing this out.)

This is a short tutorial video intended to give a brief explanation of how to use the tools in this repository. This is a somewhat longer video that goes into more detail about how the compilation process works, and what the Turing machines you generate are really doing.

At the highest level, we have Laconic, which is a language designed to be easily usable without any specialized knowledge of Turing machines. To find documentation explaining how Laconic works and how to use it, navigate to:

parsimony/src/laconic/

and read laconic_quick_start.pdf or laconic_readme.pdf, respectively. This is the recommended approach for somebody who just wants to get started making Turing machines as quickly as possible. laconic_ops.pdf provides an exhaustive list of Laconic primitives. Watch out--most of them are intuitive, but not all!

For a reader who wants to understand the compilation algorithm in its entirely, or who wants to work at a lower level in the hopes of making even more parsimonious Turing machines, it is a good idea to understand TMD. laconic_to_tmd.pdf (found in the laconic directory) explains the Laconic-to-TMD compilation process. To understand how TMD works and learn how to use it, navigate to:

parsimony/src/tmd/

and read tmd_doc.pdf or tmd_readme.pdf, respectively. tmd_to_tm.pdf explains the TMD-to-Turing-Machine compilation process.

Finally, to run and understand the Turing machine's you've generated, you'll need to navigate to:

parsimony/src/tm/

There, you'll find tm_readme.pdf, which will explain how to run the Turing machines, tm_parse.pdf, which explains how to read your Turing machines, tm_def.pdf, which gives formal definitions for the Turing machines I use, and tm_doc.pdf, which explains how the Turing machines work.

All of the documentation referenced here can also be found at:

parsimony/tex/docs/

along with the LaTeX source used to generate it. In particular, if you are looking through the repository using a browser, you'll only be able to see the pdfs themselves by going to the docs directory (the locations I described above actually point to symlinks).

My research paper which presents results about the Busy Beaver function using the tools in this repository can be found at:

parsimony/tex/busybeaver/busybeaver.pdf

Happy Turing machining!