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Communications of the ACM

Communications of the ACM

Abstract data types and the development of data structures

Abstract data types can play a significant role in the development of software that is reliable, efficient, and flexible. This paper presents and discusses the application of an algebraic technique for the specification of abstract data types. Among the examples presented is a top-down development of a symbol table for a block structured language; a discussion of the proof of its correctness is given. The paper also contains a brief discussion of the problems involved in constructing algebraic specifications that are both consistent and complete.

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