The word problem for omega-terms over the Trotter-Weil hierarchy [extended abstract]

2018-02-22T11:38:47Z (GMT) by Manfred Kufleitner Jan Philipp Wachter
© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016. Over finitewords, there is a tight connection between the quantifier alternation hierarchy inside two-variable first-order logic FO 2 and a hierarchy of finite monoids: theTrotter-Weil Hierarchy. The variousways of climbing up this hierarchy include Mal’cev products, deterministic and codeterministic concatenation as well as identities of ω-terms.We show that the word problem for ω-terms over each level of the Trotter-Weil Hierarchy is decidable; this means, for every variety V of the hierarchy and every identity u = v of ω-terms, one can decide whether all monoids in V satisfy u = v. More precisely, for every fixed variety V, our approach yields nondeterministic logarithmic space (NL) and deterministic polynomial time algorithms, which are more efficient than straightforward translations of the NL-algorithms. From a language perspective, the word problem for ω- terms is the following: for every language variety V in theTrotter-Weil Hierarchy and every language varietyWgivenbyan identity of ω-terms, one can decide whether V ⊆ W. This includes the case where V is some level of the FO 2 quantifier alternation hierarchy. As an application of our results, we show that the separation problems for the so-called corners of the Trotter- Weil Hierarchy are decidable.