Special Issue dedicated to the second edition of the conference AutoMathA: from Mathematics to Applications

In a recent paper we gave a counterexample to a longstanding conjecture concerning the characterization of regular languages of level 2 in the Straubing-Therien concatenation hierarchy of star-free languages. In that paper a new upper bound for the corresponding pseudovariety of monoids was implicitly given. In this paper we show that it is decidable whether a given monoid belongs to the new upper bound. We also prove that this new upper bound is incomparable with the previous upper bound.

We consider the monoid T with the presentation < a, b; aab = aba > which is ''close'' to trace monoids. We prove two different types of results. First, we give a combinatorial description of the lexicographically minimum and maximum representatives of their congruence classes in the free monoid \a, b\* and solve the classical equations, such as commutation and conjugacy in T. Then we study the closure properties of the two subfamilies of the rational subsets of T whose lexicographically minimum and maximum cross-sections respectively, are rational in \a, b\*.

We introduce a new model of two-way finite automaton, which is endowed with the capability of resetting the position of the tape head to the left end of the tape in a single move during the computation. Several variants of this model are examined, with the following results: The weakest known model of computation where quantum computers recognize more languages with bounded error than their classical counterparts is identified. We prove that two-way probabilistic and quantum finite automata (2PFAs and 2QFAs) can be considerably more concise than both their one-way versions (1PFAs and 1QFAs), and two-way nondeterministic finite automata (2NFAs). For this purpose, we demonstrate several infinite families of regular languages which can be recognized with some fixed probability greater than 1 2 by just tuning the transition amplitudes of a 2QFA (and, in one case, a 2PFA) with a constant number of states, whereas the sizes of the corresponding 1PFAs, 1QFAs and 2NFAs grow without bound. We also show that 2QFAs with mixed states can support highly efficient probability amplification.

We present a model of automaton for picture language recognition, called Wang automaton, which is based on labeled Wang tiles. Wang automata combine features of both online tessellation acceptors and 4-way automata: as in online tessellation acceptors, computation assigns states to each picture position; as in 4-way automata, the input head visits the picture moving from one pixel to an adjacent one, according to some scanning strategy. Wang automata recognize the class REC, i.e. they are equivalent to tiling systems or online tessellation acceptors, and hence strictly more powerful than 4-way automata. We also introduce a natural notion of determinism for Wang automata, and study the resulting class, extending the more traditional approach of diagonal-based determinism, used e. g. by deterministic tiling systems. In particular, we prove that the concept of row (or column) ambiguity defines the class of languages recognized by Wang automata directed by boustrophedonic scanning strategies.

Conjecture that any synchronizing automaton with n states has a reset word of length (n - 1)(2) was made by. Cerny in 1964. Notwithstanding the numerous attempts made by various researchers this conjecture hasn't been definitively proven yet. In this paper we study a random automaton that is sampled uniformly at random from the set of all automata with n states and m(n) letters. We show that for m(n) > 18 ln n any random automaton is synchronizing with high probability. For m(n) > n(beta), beta > 1/2 we also show that any random automaton with high probability satisfies the. Cerny conjecture.

The direct product of two words is a naturally defined word on the alphabet of pairs of symbols. An infinite word is uniformly recurrent if each its subword occurs in it with bounded gaps. An infinite word is strongly recurrent if the direct product of it with each uniformly recurrent word is also uniformly recurrent. We prove that fixed points of the expanding binary symmetric morphisms are strongly recurrent. In particular, such is the Thue-Morse word.

We give an instance of a class of morphisms for which it is easy to prove that their equality set is regular, but its emptiness is still undecidable. The class is that of bounded delay 2 morphisms.

In this work, we focus our attention to algorithmic solutions for problems where the instances are presented as straight-line programs on a given algebra. In our exposition, we try to survey general results by presenting some meaningful examples; moreover, where possible, we outline the proofs in order to give an insight of the methods and the techniques. We recall some recent results for the problem PosSLP, consisting of deciding if the integer defined by a straight-line program on the ring Z is greater than zero; we discuss some implications in the areas of numerical analysis and strategic games. Furthermore, we propose some methods for reducing Compressed Word Problem from an algebra to another; reductions from trace monoids to the semiring of nonnegative integers are exhibited and polynomial time algorithms for compressed equivalence in monoids related to Dyck reductions are shown. Finally, we consider inclusion problems for context-free languages, proving how in some cases efficient algorithms for these problems benefit from the ability to work with compressed data.