Title: Topology and computation
Speaker: Martin Escardo
Abstract: This is a survey of a (limited) selection of ideas and results
regarding topology in computation. We first consider computation with
simple types (as in Goedel's system T and Platek-Scott-Plotkin's PCF)
and then with dependent types (as in Martin-Loef's intensional type
theory).
We'll first introduce the Kleene-Kreisel spaces, which model simple
types so that programs define continuous functions. A computational
manifestation of the compact sets in topology are the (finitely)
searchable sets in computation. Finite sets are of course searchable,
and, conversely, searchable sets are compact. A computational
counter-part of the Tychonoff Theorem in topology shows that countable
products of searchable sets are searchable, and so e.g. the Cantor
type of infinite binary sequences is searchable. Moreover, a non-empty
subset of a Kleene-Kreisel space is searchable if and only if it is a
computable image of the Cantor type. This is a counter-part of the
topological fact that a non-empty subset of a sequential Hausdorff
space is compact if and only if it is a continuous image of the Cantor
space.
The Kleene--Kreisel spaces live in Johnstone's topological topos,
which models dependent types. This topos hosts the sequential
topological spaces, and also the larger category of Kuratowski limit
spaces. The limit spaces model small types. There is also an object
modelling the large type of small types, the universe, which is not a
limit space. Its topology is trivial, though: it is
indiscrete. Moreover, it is a model-independent theorem in type theory
that any universe is necessarily indiscrete. From this we derive
Rice's Theorem for the universe: it can't have any non-trivial,
extensional, decidable property, unless WLPO holds. We also briefly
discuss a constructive counter-part of the topological topos (joint
work with Chuangjie Xu) that can be defined in type theory (and has
been formalized in Agda), applied to extract computational content
from type theoretic proofs that use Brouwerian continuity axioms.