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Publication# Semantics of Protocol Modules Composition and Interaction

Abstract

This paper studies the semantics of protocol modules composition and interaction in configurable communication systems. We present a semantic model describing Cactus and Appia -- two frameworks that are used for implementing modular systems. The model covers protocol graph, session and channel creation, and inter-module communication of events and messages. To build the model, we defined a source-code-validated specification of a large fragment of the programming interface provided by the frameworks; we developed an operational semantics describing the behaviour of the operations through state transitions, making explicit interactions between modules. Developing the model and a small example implementing a configurable multicast helped us to better understand the design choices in these frameworks. The work reported in this paper is our first step towards reasoning about systems composed from collections of modules.

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Related concepts (33)

Related publications (39)

Operational semantics

Operational semantics is a category of formal programming language semantics in which certain desired properties of a program, such as correctness, safety or security, are verified by constructing proofs from logical statements about its execution and procedures, rather than by attaching mathematical meanings to its terms (denotational semantics).

Denotational semantics

In computer science, denotational semantics (initially known as mathematical semantics or Scott–Strachey semantics) is an approach of formalizing the meanings of programming languages by constructing mathematical objects (called denotations) that describe the meanings of expressions from the languages. Other approaches providing formal semantics of programming languages include axiomatic semantics and operational semantics. Broadly speaking, denotational semantics is concerned with finding mathematical objects called domains that represent what programs do.

Semantics (computer science)

In programming language theory, semantics is the rigorous mathematical study of the meaning of programming languages. Semantics assigns computational meaning to valid strings in a programming language syntax. It is closely related to, and often crosses over with, the semantics of mathematical proofs. Semantics describes the processes a computer follows when executing a program in that specific language. This can be shown by describing the relationship between the input and output of a program, or an explanation of how the program will be executed on a certain platform, hence creating a model of computation.

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