Algebraic Specification

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en:Algebraic specification


Algebraic specification [1][2][3] is a specific approach to the formal specification, prototyping, and general development of computer programs.

Algebraic modeling of systems is the basic methodology of with antecedents in Langefors (TAIS) and the Burroughs Large Systems. This page gives an overview of this and the generic topic.


As an area of applied mathematics and computer science, Algebraic Specification (AS) addresses these concerns[1]:

    1. design of algebraic specification formalisms;
    2. application of algebraic specification techniques to the definition programming languages;
    3. generation of testable or executable prototypes from specifications.

Although there is also a branch of this topic which is more concentrated on theoretical computer than applications, the latter are the focus of this article.

Implementation and Issues

Algebraic specification Formalisms

Pure Functional Programming and Specifications

Development Practices

The broad spectrum of observed practices in which computer systems are actually developed is a superset of those covered in en:Software Engineering.

Capability Maturity

Software Design in a Social Context


See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 Bergstra, J. A.; B. Mahr (1989). Algebraic Specification. Academic Press. ISBN 0-201-41635-2. 
  2. Ehrig, E.; J. Heering, J. Klint (1985). Algebraic Specification. EATCS Monographs on Theoretical Computer Science. 6. Springer-Vrlag. 
  3. Wirsing, M. (1990). J. van Leeuwen (ed.). ed. Algebraic Specification. Handbook of Theoretical Computer Science. B. Elsevier. pp. 675–788.