Logical reduction of relations: From relational databases to Peirce’s reduction thesis

Logic Journal of the IGPL 31 (2023)
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Abstract

We study logical reduction (factorization) of relations into relations of lower arity by Boolean or relative products that come from applying conjunctions and existential quantifiers to predicates, i.e. by primitive positive formulas of predicate calculus. Our algebraic framework unifies natural joins and data dependencies of database theory and relational algebra of clone theory with the bond algebra of C.S. Peirce. We also offer new constructions of reductions, systematically study irreducible relations and reductions to them and introduce a new characteristic of relations, ternarity, that measures their ‘complexity of relating’ and allows to refine reduction results. In particular, we refine Peirce’s controversial reduction thesis, and show that reducibility behaviour is dramatically different on finite and infinite domains.

Author's Profile

Sergiy Koshkin
University of Houston - Downtown

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