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What You Must Remember When Processing Data Words

Michael Benedikt‚ Clemens Ley and Gabriele Puppis


We provide a Myhill-Nerode-like theorem that characterizes the class of data languages recognized by deterministic finite-memory automata (DMA). As a byproduct of this characterization result, we obtain a canonical representation for any DMA-recognizable language. We then show that this canonical automaton is minimal in a strong sense: it has the minimal number of control states and also the minimal amount of internal storage. We finally show how this minimal automaton can be computed.

Alberto Mendelzon Workshop on Foundations of Databases