Vaughan Pratt's Home Page

Current research interests:

  • Global Environmental Change. (Model complexity of global climate)
  • Foundations of Geometry. (Euclid Book I via algebra instead of logic, cf. Pasch-Hilbert-Tarski-Birkhoff.)
  • Autonomous Vehicles. (Harmonic Predictive Control as a drop-in replacement for PID control.)
  • Foundations of Concurrency. (Chu Spaces over 4.)
  • Speech Recognition. (The Speech Manifold as a low-dimensional geometric object.)


    May 14: "Academic Leadership". Invited talk, Global Leadership Development Program, Sydney University International House, Sydney, Australia.

    May 26: Euclid's Elements as an Equational Theory. Seminar, Mathematics Dept., University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia.

    August 21: Aristotle, Boole, and Chu: Duality since 350 BC. Plenary talk, George Boole Mathematical Sciences Conference, Cork, Ireland. (Conference in honour of Boole's 200th birthday.)

    October 12: Aristotle, Boole, and Categories. Invited paper, Parikh Festschrift, 2015.

    December 17 (in preparation): Model Complexity of Global Climate: Could Arrhenius have foreseen the hiatus? Poster, Global Environmental Change session GC43C, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting 2015, Moscone Hall, San Francisco.
    Also here .


    December 16: An Ekman Transport Mechanism for the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation . Poster, Global Environmental Change session GC21C, American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting 2014, Moscone Hall, San Francisco.


    August 5: A homogeneous algebraic definition of Euclidean space, Talk, Conference BLAST 2013, Chapman University, Orange, CA.

    July 18: Weiner's Repetition Finder. Invited talk, 24th Annual Conference on Combinatorial Pattern Matching, session "1973 + 40 = 2013", Bad Herrenalb, Germany.

    December 13: Reconciling multidecadal land-sea global temperature with rising CO2. Talk, SWIRL session GC53C "Understanding 400 ppm Climate: Past, Present and Future", American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting 2013, Moscone Hall, San Francisco. See also video of oral presentation.


    May 25: Geodesic spaces: Euclid's five postulates as an equational theory, starting with the second. Invited talk at The Constructive in Logic and Applications: A conference in honour of the 60th Birthday of Sergei Artemov. Video here.

    December 4: Multidecadal climate to within a millikelvin. Poster, Global Environmental Change session GC23C, American Geophysical Union Fall meeting 2012, San Francisco.


    February 12: Linear Process Algebra. Invited talk, International Conference on Distributed Computing and Internet Technology, Bhubaneswar, India. See also slides of talk.

    February 15: The Logic of Global Warming. Seminar, TATA Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai, India.

    February 15: Euclidean and non-Euclidean algebra. Seminar, TATA Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai, India.

    June 14: Euclidean and non-Euclidean algebra. Seminar, Maths Colloquium, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia

    June 16: Linear Process Algebra. Colloquium, National Information and Communications Technology Australia (NICTA), Sydney, Australia.

    June 17: Linear Process Algebra. Seminar, School of Information Technology, University of Sydney, Australia.

    June 23: The Logic of Global Warming. Seminar, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia

    July 23: Structure from sorts, properties, and composition: A minimalist approach to topoalgebraic structure. Talk, International Conference on Category Theory, UBC, Vancouver, Canada.

    October 11: Linear Process Algebra. Math & CS Colloquium, Santa Clara University, CA.

    December 8: A three-component analytic model of long-term climate change . Poster, Global Environmental Change session GC43B, American Geophysical Union Fall meeting 2011, San Francisco.


    April 9: Tutorial on Chu spaces. Invited tutorial, Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique (IRCAM), Paris, France.

    April 9: Presketches. Talk, IRCAM, Paris, France.

    April 13: Presketches. Seminar, Institute for Information, Logic, and Computation (IILC), University of Amsterdam, Netherlands.

    June 2: Topological algebra based on sorts and properties as free and cofree universes. Talk, Conference BLAST 2010, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado.

    June 5: Geodesic spaces : momentum :: Groups : symmetry. Talk, Conference BLAST 2010, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado.


    Mailing Address:
    2215 Old Page Mill Rd
    Palo Alto, CA 94304

    Publications: (complete list in vita)

  • HTML,
  • Abstracts of Concurrency group publications (HTML)
  • Chu Space Web Site (HTML)

  • Stanford Affiliations

  • CSD: Computer Science Department
  • EE: Department of Electrical Engineering (By courtesy)
  • AI Lab
  • Theory group
  • CSLI: Center for Studies in Language and Information

  • Other Affiliations

  • ACM: Association for Computing Machinery (Fellow)
  • IEEE: Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (Senior Member)
  • AGU: American Geophysical Union (Life Member)
  • IGPL: Interest Group in Pure and Applied Logics (Editorial Board)
  • ASL Association for Symbolic Logic (Member)
  • AMS American Mathematical Society (Member)
  • MAA Mathematical Association of America (Member)
  • AMS American Meteorological Society (Member)
  • SID Society for Information Display (Member)
  • Erdos Number: 2
  • Linux Counter Project Number: 119
  • Unix User ID: 11 (at Stanford CSD (1983-present), Sun Microsystems 1982-87, Tiqit Computers, and home)

  • M.Sc. Thesis: Translation of English into Logical Expressions, Sydney University, August 1969. Advisor: Jan B. Hext
    Abstract: A computer program to solve Lewis Carroll's syllogisms is considered. A logical decision method is evolved for dealing with syllogisms expressed as conjunctive normal form (CNF) propositions. For the translation of English into CNF, a theory of translation is presented. A computer program is exhibited which explicitly embodies each feature of the theory, and produces CNF translations of Carroll's syllogisms. It is claimed that the translation theory is the most significant result of the research. A translation approach to phrase-structure grammars enables their practical value to be studied more closely. It is shown that the position of phrase-structure grammars is stronger than that of transformational grammars in a utilitarian theory, as distinct from an explanatory theory.

    Ph.D. Thesis: Shellsort and Sorting Networks, Stanford University, December 1971.
    Advisor: Donald E. Knuth
    Former Ph.D. Students:
  • David Harel, MIT, 1978
  • Bob Streett, MIT, 1981 (coadvisor: Albert Meyer)
  • Jay Gischer, Stanford, 1984
  • Ross Casley, Stanford, 1991
  • Roger Crew, Stanford, 1991
  • Orli Waarts, Stanford, 1992
  • Gideon Avrahami, Stanford, 1994
  • David Magerman, Stanford, 1994 (coadvisor: Fred Jelinek)
  • Vineet Gupta, Stanford, 1994
  • Anna Patterson, U. Illinois, 1997 (coadvisor: Gul Aga)
  • Paul Fahn, Stanford, 1999 (coadvisor: Tom Cover)
  • Parham Aarabi, Stanford, 2001
  • Ramon Prieto, Stanford, 2003
  • Keyvan Mohajer, Stanford, 2006

  • Miscellaneous Thoughts