Re: BoF session in Prague "Formal State Machines"

Stephane Bortzmeyer <bortzmeyer@nic.fr> Thu, 08 February 2007 20:47 UTC

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Date: Thu, 8 Feb 2007 21:45:27 +0100
From: Stephane Bortzmeyer <bortzmeyer@nic.fr>
To: Fred Baker <fred@cisco.com>
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Subject: Re: BoF session in Prague "Formal State Machines"
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On Thu, Feb 08, 2007 at 12:24:19AM +0100,
 Fred Baker <fred@cisco.com> wrote 
 a message of 50 lines which said:

> Table-described state machines can in fact be machine- readable if
> they are designed to be.

Nobody ever said the opposite. Cosmogol is very close from a
table-described state machine, by the way, although the syntax is very
different from a typical table but a table, or a Comogol description
are both just a list of tuples (current-state, transition,
next-state).

> Now, you might not *like* to write programs that recognize ascii-art
> cells and find in them things like input names, new state names,
> conditionals, actions, and side-effects.

Indeed. I challenge you to write a parser for the state machines of RFC
4006 :-) specially with the RFC headers and footers.

We certainly could imagine a more table-like formal syntax with
delimiters like:

OPEN   | Close it    | CLOSED
CLOSED | Open it     | OPEN
OPEN   | Blow it out"| GONE

(or TeX's & sign)

or with fixed-size cells like RFC 4006 attempts to do.

Do you find it better?


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