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Journal Articles Science of Computer Programming Year : 2009

Proofs of randomized algorithms in Coq


Randomized algorithms are widely used for finding efficiently approximated solutions to complex problems, for instance primality testing and for obtaining good average behavior. Proving properties of such algorithms requires subtle reasoning both on algorithmic and probabilistic aspects of programs. Thus, providing tools for the mechanization of reasoning is an important issue. This paper presents a new method for proving properties of randomized algorithms in a proof assistant based on higher-order logic. It is based on the monadic interpretation of randomized programs as probabilistic distributions. It does not require the definition of an operational semantics for the language nor the development of a complex formalization of measure theory. Instead it uses functional and algebraic properties of unit interval. Using this model, we show the validity of general rules for estimating the probability for a randomized algorithm to satisfy specified properties. This approach addresses only discrete distributions and gives rules for analysing general recursive functions. We apply this theory to the formal proof of a program implementing a Bernoulli distribution from a coin flip and to the (partial) termination of several programs. All the theories and results presented in this paper have been fully formalized and proved in the Coq proof assistant.
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inria-00431771 , version 1 (13-11-2009)



Philippe Audebaud, Christine Paulin-Mohring. Proofs of randomized algorithms in Coq. Science of Computer Programming, 2009, ⟨10.1016/j.scico.2007.09.002⟩. ⟨inria-00431771⟩
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