Compositional Methods for Probabilistic Systems

Luca de Alfaro, Thomas A. Henzinger, and Ranjit Jhala

We present a compositional trace-based model for probabilistic systems. The behavior of a system with probabilistic choice is a stochastic process, namely, a probability distribution on traces, or "bundle." Consequently, the semantics of a system with both nondeterministic and probabilistic choice is a set of bundles. The bundles of a composite system can be obtained by combining the bundles of the components in a simple mathematical way. Refinement between systems is bundle containment. We achieve assume-guarantee compositionality for bundle semantics by introducing two scoping mechanisms. The first mechanism, which is standard in compositional modeling, distinguishes inputs from outputs and hidden state. The second mechanism, which arises in probabilistic systems, partitions the state into probabilistically independent regions.

Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Concurrency Theory (CONCUR), Lecture Notes in Computer Science 2154, Springer, 2001, pp. 351-365.

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