Finite Model Theory - Basic Challenges - Characterisation of A Class of Structures - Example

Example

We want to show that the property that the size of an orderered structure A=(A, ≤) is even, can not be expressed in FO.

1. The idea is to pick A ∈ EVEN and B ∉ EVEN, where EVEN is the class of all structures of even size.

2. Therefore we start with 2 ordered structures A2 and B2 with universes A2 = {1, 2, 3, 4} and B2 = {1, 2, 3, 4, 5}. Obviously A2 ∈ EVEN and B2 ∉ EVEN.

3. Now we can show* that in a 2-move Ehrenfeucht-Fraisse Game (i.e. m = 2, what explains the subscrpts above) on A2 and B2 the duplicator always wins, and thus A2 and B2 cannot be discriminated in FO, i.e. A2 |= FO ⇔ B2 |= FO.

4. Next we have to scale the structures up by increasing m. For example for m = 3 we must find an A3 and B3 s.t. the duplicator wins the game. This can be achieved by A3 = {1, ..., 8} and B3 = {1, ..., 9}. More general, we choose Am = {1, ..., 2m} and Bm = {1, ..., 2m+1} where we can prove that the duplicator always wins*. Thus EVEN on finite ordered structures cannot be expressed in FO, qed.

(*) Notice that the proof of the result of the Ehrenfeucht-Fraisse Game has been omitted, since it is not the main focus here.

Read more about this topic:  Finite Model Theory, Basic Challenges, Characterisation of A Class of Structures

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