Frank's Blog

New Book Chapter on Pi-Calculus and BPM 

Finally, one of my last scientific works on BPM and the pi-calculus has been published as a book chapter in Process Algebra for Parallel and Distributed Processing, edited by Michael Alexander and William Gardner.

The chapter itself is called Business Process Specification and Analysis. In contrast to prior work, it is written at a more sophisticated formal level (at least from my point of view), thanks to my co-author Uwe Nestmann. Indeed, I wished my doctoral thesis would be this formal.

Technically, we investigated the asynchronous pi-calculus (new work here) and also introduced a formal or-join execution semantics for the pi-calculus (more new work, but not completely formalized). The main focus, however, was the introduction and discussion of Trios, a concept that refined the functional abstraction (definition 5.2 of my thesis).

Concluding, I can recommend the paper to anyone (still) interested in using the pi-calculus in the area of BPM (what else should I say as an author :-). Unfortunately, I have no permission to provide a PDF file for download, so you have to either find a library or make a rather huge investment to get the chapter.

But what I can offer for free is a prototypical tool that was developed during the writing of the chapter. While it's command line based (written in Ruby), it has a graphical representation of the business process currently executed. And yes, you need the same Mac tool (called OmniGraffle) as for the Lazy Soundness Toolchain to create your own BPDs that can be imported. But don't worry, I provide a lot of ready to use examples to showcase the execution and analysis of business processes in the asynchronous pi-calculus. The homepage of the tool, called pishell, can be found here. Have fun!

I would also like to place a last comment (and thanks) to the editors and publishers of the book. In contrast to Springer (where you have to do all by yourself), the chapter was proof-read by experts and the grammar and spelling have been professionally checked.


Steven Gibson 

Thanks for the work Frank. I will be using some ideas from it for my paper at World Conf of Computer Science this July.

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