Action Calculi, or Syntactic Action Structures

Robin Milner

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Action structures have previously been proposed as an algebra for both the syntax and the semantics of interactive computation. Here a class of concrete action structures called action calculi is identified, which can serve as a non linear syntax for a wide variety of models of interactive behaviour. They generalise a previously defined action structure PIC for the π-calculus. One action calculus differs from another only in its generators, called controls.

Several extensions to PIC are given as action calculi, giving essentially the same power as the π-calculus. An action calculus is also outlined for PT nets — a class of Petti nets — parametrized upon their places and transitions.

Finally, action calculi are characterized as the free algebras in a sub-variety of action structures, namely those which satisfy certain additional axioms.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMathematical Foundations of Computer Science 1993
Subtitle of host publication18th International Symposium, MFCS'93 Gdańsk, Poland, August 30–September 3, 1993 Proceedings
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-540-47927-7
Publication statusPublished - 1993


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