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README.md

README.md

loop

François Pottier, INRIA Paris-Rocquencourt.

Compiled with Coq 8.4pl2.

This little library is supposed to help define a simple do/while loop in Coq (that is, a simple tail-recursive function), in such a way that the extracted OCaml code is also a clean loop.

The library does not rely on any axioms. At the level of the extracted OCaml code, it has zero overhead.

The user provides the loop body. The body must have type S -> S + T, which means that, given a current state of type S, the loop body either produces a new state (and the loop will continue) or produces a final result (and the loop will stop).

The user must also provide a well-founded ordering on the type S and a proof that the loop body respects this ordering.

The library constructs the loop, a total function of type S -> T, and establishes several properties of this function, including a fixed point equation and a Hoare-style rasoning rule.

The file Loop.v contains the library. It is organized in three parts:

  1. Part 1 covers the simple case (described above) where the loop is total, i.e., for every initial state of type S, termination is guaranteed.

  2. Part 2 covers the more complex case where the loop is partial, i.e., an invariant I must be imposed on the current state in order to guarantee termination. In that case, a loop can still be constructed, but it is a function of type { s | I s } -> T.

  3. Part 3 offers a facility to define a new loop as a refinement of an existing loop, without being forced to re-establish the termination of the new loop.

The file MyWf.v contains a few lemmas about well-foundedness, which the end user does not need to worry about.

The file LoopDemo.v contains demos of parts 1 and 2. (There is no demo of part 3 for the moment.)

The second demo, in particular, is still rather clumsy. Suggestions for improvement are welcome!