The occur-check problem in Prolog

@article{Plaisted1984TheOP,
  title={The occur-check problem in Prolog},
  author={David A. Plaisted},
  journal={New Generation Computing},
  year={1984},
  volume={2},
  pages={309-322}
}
We present a method for preprocessing Prolog programs so that their operational semantics will be given by the first-order predicate calculus. Most Prolog implementations do not use a full unification algorithm, for efficiency reasons. The result is that it is possible to create terms having loops in them, whose semantics is not adequately described by first-order logic. Our method finds places where such loops may be created, and adds tests to detect them. This should not appreciably slow down… CONTINUE READING
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