Quantitative Safety and Liveness


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Safety and liveness are elementary concepts of computation, and the foundation of many verification paradigms. The safety-liveness classification of boolean properties characterizes whether a given property can be falsified by observing a finite prefix of an infinite computation trace (always for safety, never for liveness). In quantitative specification and verification, properties assign not truth values, but quantitative values to infinite traces (e.g., a cost, or the distance to a boolean property). We introduce quantitative safety and liveness, and we prove that our definitions induce conservative quantitative generalizations of both (1)~the safety-progress hierarchy of boolean properties and (2)~the safety-liveness decomposition of boolean properties. In particular, we show that every quantitative property can be written as the pointwise minimum of a quantitative safety property and a quantitative liveness property. Consequently, like boolean properties, also quantitative properties can be $\min$-decomposed into safety and liveness parts, or alternatively, $\max$-decomposed into co-safety and co-liveness parts. Moreover, quantitative properties can be approximated naturally. We prove that every quantitative property that has both safe and co-safe approximations can be monitored arbitrarily precisely by a monitor that uses only a finite number of states.
quantitative safety
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