Concept

Domain theory

Summary
Domain theory is a branch of mathematics that studies special kinds of partially ordered sets (posets) commonly called domains. Consequently, domain theory can be considered as a branch of order theory. The field has major applications in computer science, where it is used to specify denotational semantics, especially for functional programming languages. Domain theory formalizes the intuitive ideas of approximation and convergence in a very general way and is closely related to topology. Motivation and intuition The primary motivation for the study of domains, which was initiated by Dana Scott in the late 1960s, was the search for a denotational semantics of the lambda calculus. In this formalism, one considers "functions" specified by certain terms in the language. In a purely syntactic way, one can go from simple functions to functions that take other functions as their input arguments. Using again just the syntactic transformations available in this formalism, one can o
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