Reasoning with Simplifying Assumptions: A Methodology and Example

Yishai Feldman, Charles Rich

Simplifying assumptions are a powerful technique for dealing with complexity, which is used in all branches of science and engineering. This work develops a formal account of this technique in the context of heuristic search and automated reasoning. We also present a methodology for choosing appropriate simplifying assumptions in specific domains, and demonstrate the use of this methodology with an example of reasoning about typed partial functions in an automated programming assistant.

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