Decidable and Undecidable Problems in Matrix Theory

Vesa Halava
University of Turku, Department of Mathematics, FIN-20014 Turku, Finland vehalava@utu. Supported by the Academy of Finland under the grant 14047

Turku Centre for Computer Science TUCS Technical Report No 127 September 1997 ISBN 952-12-0059-6 ISSN 1239-1891

Abstract
This work is a survey on decidable and undecidable problems in matrix theory. The problems studied are simply formulated, however most of them are undecidable. The method to prove undecidabilities is the one found by Paterson Pat] in 1970 to prove that the mortality of nitely generated matrix monoids is undecidable. This method is based on the undecidability of the Post Correspondence Problem. We shall present a new proof to this mortality problem, which still uses the method of Paterson, but is a bit simpler.

Keywords: decidability, undecidability, matrix semigroups, mortality, freeness, niteness, zero in the right upper-corner, Skolem's problem

Contents
2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7

1 Introduction 2 Preliminaries

Basics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Semigroups and monoids . . . . . . Matrix semigroups and monoids . . Decidability and undecidability . . Word monoids and morphisms . . . The Post Correspondence Problem The Mixed Modi cation of PCP . .

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1 3
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3 Mortality of Matrix Monoids
3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4

The undecidability of the mortality problem . . . . . . The mortality of semigroups with two generators . . . The existence of the zero element in matrix semigroups The mortality problem in dimension two . . . . . . . .

11
11 15 17 18

4 Freeness of Matrix Semigroups

4.1 The undecidability of the freeness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 4.2 The freeness problem in dimension two . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 4.3 Common elements in semigroups . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 5.1 The decidability of the niteness . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25

21 25

5 Finiteness of Matrix Semigroups 6 Zero in the Right Upper Corner 7 Skolem's Problem

6.1 The undecidability of the zero in the right upper corner . . . . 33 6.2 The two generator case . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35

33 37

7.1 Skolem's problem in dimension two . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 7.2 Skolem's problem and the mortality problem . . . . . . . . . . 42 7.3 Skolem's problem for matrices over natural numbers . . . . . . 45

8 An In nite Number of Zeros in Skolem's Problem 9 Summary

8.1 Rational series . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 8.2 Skolem's theorem . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 8.3 Decidability of the in nite number of zeros . . . . . . . . . . . 58

46 60

The de nitions and proofs of such properties can be found from Gan]. using the same method than the original proof of Paterson. As we shall see.e. however. Our undecidability proofs are based on the fact that the so called Post Correspondence Problem is undecidable. but it turns out that many of these problems are algorithmically undecidable. The proof of the undecidability of the mortality problem for 3 3 matrices by M.S. it is not known whether they are decidable or not. i. which means that there exists no computer program to solve these problems. We shall present a shorter and simpli ed proof for the undecidability of the mortality problem. It follows that for many problems. and throughout this work we shall use the very same method. This result is from CKa]. it is also suitable for our purposes in proving undecidability results. Post Pos] in 1946 and it is a very important problem in formal language theory. The matrices we consider are over integers. 1 . and the problems we study are simply formulated and elementary. In the third chapter we shall show that the method of Paterson does not suit for problems of 2 2 matrices. This result is from CHK]. These and other basic de nitions. Paterson used the Post Correspondence Problem in his proof. In the third chapter we study the existence of the zero matrix in matrix semigroups. when we consider such matrices. Paterson Pat] in 1970 provides a tool to prove other undecidability results for matrices. This undecidable problem was introduced by E. Occasionally we need more advanced properties of matrices that are stated when they are needed. the so called mortality problem.1 Introduction This thesis deals with decidable and undecidable problems in matrix theory. We shall also consider the special case where the semigroup is generated by two matrices. notations and properties are presented in the next chapter. We use mainly only basic properties of matrices. We are going to show that many simply formulated problems are actually undecidable. It turns out that also in this case the mortality problem is undecidable if the dimension of the matrices is at least 45.

This problem is important from the point of view of semigroup theory. The proof is based on so called Skolem's theorem. This proof. The proof we present is from Man]. These results are mentioned at the end of the chapter. but not simple and it uses the theory of rational series. Results in that chapter is mainly from CHK]. The proof we present is from MaS]. Results of rational series in that chapter is from BeR]. In the sixth chapter the existence of a zero in the right upper corner in a matrix semigroup is treated. The decidability of niteness helps us also to prove some other simple properties of matrix semigroups generated by one matrix. We will prove that it is decidable whether a matrix semigroup of matrices over natural numbers is nite or not. This problem is so called Skolem's problem. This result is from CKa]. In the eighth chapter we will prove that it is decidable. The proof we present is based on ideas of J. due to Han]. especially for 2 2 matrices. We shall also consider the case where semigroup is generated by two matrices and we prove that this problem is undecidable.In the fourth chapter we study the freeness of matrix semigroups. Cassaigne Cas]. is elementary. whether there is in nite number of zeros in the right upper corner in the powers of one matrix. We shall summarize the results of this work in the tenth chapter where a table of decidable and undecidable matrix problems is presented. In the seventh and eighth chapters we study the existence of a zero in the right upper corner in a matrix semigroup generated by one matrix. In the fth chapter we consider the niteness of matrix monoids. 2 . In the seventh chapter we will show that Skolem's problem is decidable for 2 2 matrices. We shall prove that this problem is undecidable for matrices with dimension at least 3. when the dimension of the matrices is at least 24.

Usually the operation is called a product and the semigroup (S. i. for all a.3 Matrix semigroups and monoids In this work we consider square matrices over integers. if it has a neutral or identity element. ) is denoted simply by S .e. rational numbers. 2. there exists an element 1 in S such that for all a in S . 2.1 Basics We shall denote the set of natural numbers by N . 2. respectively. i. a b 2 S and (a b) c = a (b c): In other words is an associative operation in S . The sets of integers. A pair (S. As 3 . A semigroup S is said to be freely generated and it is free if there exists subset X of S such that every element of S has a unique factorization over X . A monoid M is said to be free. It is assumed troughout this paper that zero is in N . if is a binary operation such that. N = f0. Q . 1. In this case the set X is called the free generating set. and in this section we shall recall some basic notations and properties of these matrices. R and C . every element of S can be uniquely expressed as a product of elements of X . b and c in S .2 Semigroups and monoids Let S be a set. i. 1 a = a 1 = a: Form now on.2 Preliminaries 2. we denote ab = a b if no misunderstanding is possible. ) is called a semigroup.e. real numbers and complex numbers are denoted by Z. if M nf1g is a free semigroup. : : : g.e. Semigroup S is called a monoid.

a general reference for matrix theory we give F.P. Gantmacher's book The Theory of Matrices Gan]. The set of n n matrices over integers is denoted by Zn n, and n is called the dimension. Sometimes Z is replaced by N or by some other semiring. Recall that K is a semiring, if it has two operations, + and , satisfying the following properties: (i) (K; +) is a commutative monoid with 0 as its neutral element. (ii) (K nf0g; ) is a monoid with 1 as its neutral element. (iii) For all a; b; c in K , a(b + c) = ab + ac and (b + c)a = ba + ca. (iv) For all a in K , 0a = a0 = 0. Let A be a matrix in K m n . We denote the coe cient in the i'th row and on the j 'th column of matrix A by Aij , and, consequently, a matrix A is de ned to be (Aij )m n . It is clear that (Zn n; ) forms a monoid, where is the usual multiplication of matrices, i.e. if A and B are in Zn n, then (A B )ij = (AB )ij =
n X k=1

Aik Bkj ;

and the identity element is the identity matrix I (or In), 01 0 0 : : : 01 C B I = B0: : 1: : 0: : :: :: :: : :0C : @: : : :A 0 0 0 ::: 1 n n We will denote this monoid by Mn(Z). The above can be extended to other semirings than Z, and the matrix monoid of n n matrices over semiring K is denoted by Mn(K ). We call a matrix P in Mn(N ) a permutation matrix, if it is derived from In by mixing the rows (or columns) by some permutation. Clearly, if P is a permutation matrix, then each row and each column has 1 in exactly one position and in the other positions there are 0's. We denote ( 1; if i = j; ij = 0; otherwise: Clearly Iij = ij , and if is a permutation on the set f1; : : : ; ng, then P , for which Pij = i; (j), is a permutation matrix. It is also easy to see that P ?1 = (i);j . 4

For a square matrix A = (Aij )n n de ne the determinant of A by

A11 A12 : : : A1n det(A) = :A21: : :A22: : ::::::: : :A2:n: :: :: : An X1 An2 : : : Ann = sign(j1 ; j2 ; : : : ; jn)A1j1 A2j2

(2.1)

Anjn ;

where runs through the permutations on f1; 2; : : :; ng, = (j1 ; j2; : : : ; jn), and sign(j1 ; : : : ; jn) is the sign of the permutation , sign(j1 ; j2; : : : ; jn) = (?1)t( ) ; where t( ) is the number of inversions in , i.e the number of cases where jl > jk and l < k. Recall that in a permutation (j1 ; : : : ; jn) all ji's are di erent. There are also some other methods than the sum (2.1) to calculate the determinant, but we will use the one in the de nition. Let A be an element of Mn (Q ). If det A 6= 0, we say that A is invertible, and it has the unique inverse matrix A?1 in Mn (Q ) such that AA?1 = A?1A = I . Note that if A is an element of Zn n and det(A) 6= 0, then the inverse matrix of A is not necessarily an element of Zn n, but it is an element of Q n n . The eigenvalue in C and eigenvector x in C n , x 6= (0; : : : ; 0), of a matrix A in Mn (C ) satisfy the condition

Ax = x;

(2.2)

where C n denotes as usual the n dimensional vector space over the complex numbers. The vector x can be understood also as an n 1 matrix. From the equation (2.2) it follows that the eigenvalue of A satis es the equation det(A ? I ) = 0: This equation is called the characteristic equation of the matrix A. The left hand side of this equation is so called characteristic polynomial, which is denoted by

cA( ) = (?1)n( n ? c1

n?1 + ?

+ (?1)ncn):

5

This polynomial has degree n, if A is in C n n , and the coe cients ci are in C . If 0 is an eigenvalue of A, we know that cA ( 0 ) = 0. Therefore, if we let the eigenvalues of A be i, i = 1; : : : ; n, it follows that

cA( ) = (?1)n( ? 1)( ? 2) ( ? n); where the i's need not be di erent. Now we see that cn =
n Y i=1 i = c(0) = det(A) and c1 = n X i=1 i:

We call the sum of i's the trace of the matrix A, and denote it by tr(A). Let p be a polynomial with coe cients in C , p(x) = c1xk +c2xk?1 + +c1. Then for a matrix A in Mn (Z) we de ne

p(A) = c1Ak + c2 Ak?1 + + c1 I: Next we present the so called Cayley{Hamilton theorem. We do not present a proof here, a detailed proof can be found for example from Gan]. Theorem 2.1. Let A be a square matrix and let cA be its characteristic
polynomial. Then

cA(A) = 0;
where 0 = (0)n n is the zero matrix. Note that since we are able to compute the determinant of a square matrix, we are also able to compute the characteristic polynomial of a square matrix. We end this section with a notation for the transpose matrix AT of A, T) = A . (A ij ji

2.4 Decidability and undecidability
Let P be a well-de ned decision problem, i.e. a set of instances each of which either has or does not have a certain property. We say that the problem P is decidable, if there exists an algorithm, which for every correct input or an instance of P terminates and gives an answer \yes", if the input has the required property and answers \no" otherwise. If no such algorithm exists, then P is called undecidable. To prove that the problem P is decidable, we 6

A subset of a word monoid is called a language. The usual method to prove the undecidability of a problem P is to reduce some already known undecidable problem Q to P . so that the condition \p has the property of P " is equivalent with the condition \q has the property of Q". A word u in is called a pre x of the word w. which leads to a contradiction. We shall use a classical undecidable problem. Let be the empty word and = + f g. when the binary operation is de ned as the concatenation of words. Next we de ne a few properties of words. if there exists a word v in such that w = uv. Denote by + the set of all words over . 2. for all u and v in M1 . then the instances q of the problem Q can be solved and therefore the problem Q is decidable. A mapping h from a monoid M1 to a monoid M2 is called a morphism if.must nd an algorithm which decides P . then w1 w2 = a1 : : : anb1 : : : bm : The result of the catenation is clearly in + and it is an associative operation. The set + is a semigroup. It follows that if the problem P is decidable. A nite sequence of letters is called a word. The length of the word w is n. the word semigroup. 7 . or show that such an algorithm exists. which means that. +. in such reductions. These undecidable problems are introduced later in this chapter. Let w = a1 : : : an be a word in so ai is in for all 1 i n. if w1 = a1 : : : an and w2 = b1 : : : bm are in +.5 Word monoids and morphisms Let be a nite set of symbols. we transform e ectively an arbitrary instance q of Q to some instance p of P . Clearly is a free monoid generated by and is its identity element. Then the word v is called a su x of w. the Post Correspondence Problem or one of its modi cations. and we denote it by jwj = n. h satis es the condition h(uv) = h(u)h(v): Note that in the right hand side of this equation the operation is the operation of the monoid M2 . This means that. We call an alphabet and its elements are called letters.

from HaK]. We denote by PCP(n) the subproblem of PCP for instances of size at most n. and it was rst proved by Post in Pos] in the general case. g) whether or not E (h. The mixed modi cation of PCP. g) of MMPCP. MMPCP for short. The undecidability of PCP is a classical result in formal language theory. can be found. g : ! whether there exists a word w = a1 : : : ak with ai in and k 1.6 The Post Correspondence Problem We shall next study the Post Correspondence Problem. which have been proved to be undecidable. but equivalent and more useful to our purposes. asks to determine for two given morphisms h.. The proof of the undecidability of PCP(7) can be found from MSe] and the proof of the decidability of PCP(n). It is also known that if n 2. 8 . there does not exist any algorithm for solving all instances of PCP. The word w satisfying the equation (2. then PCP(n) is decidable. g) = . Let h and g be two morphisms from into .2. g) are called solutions of the instance (h. (2. g) of PCP. g) of PCP is de ned to be the cardinality of the alphabet . for each i. PCP for short. This version of PCP is not the original version of the problem. for n 2.e. and if n 7 then it is undecidable. gg and.7 The Mixed Modi cation of PCP There exists many modi cations of the Post Correspondence Problem. 2. g) = fw 2 + j h(w) = g(w)g: The Post Correspondence Problem asks to decide for a given pair (h. We shall next introduce one of these that is later used in the Chapter 4.3) is called a solution of the instance (h. hi and gi are in fh.3) where. Elements in E (h. Post Pos] in 1946. For n greater than 2 and smaller than 7 the decidability status is open. introduced by E. hj 6= gj . i. for example. The equality set of h and g is the set E (h. such that h1(a1 )h2 (a2) : : : hk (ak ) = g1(a1)g2(a2 ) : : : gk (ak ). The size of an instance (h. for some j .

w is a solution of instance (h.2. d. g : ! and that c. therefore the implication in one direction is clear. if and only if the instance (ha . eg) by setting ha(x) = l(h(x)). We see also that ai 9 . that is. g) of PCP has a solution aw. Finally we show that the pair (ha . so by the de nitions of h and g. Finally. the minimality of w implies that h1 6= g1 and hk 6= gk . mentioned earlier in this chapter.3).e. This follows from the equations ha(dwe) = cl(h(a))l(h(w))de = cl(h(aw))de and ga(dwe) = cdr(g(a))r(g(w))e = cdr(g(aw))e: Now. We claim that then also h(w) = g(w). d and e are new letters not in . r : ! ( fdg) be morphisms de ned as l(a) = da and r(a) = ad for all a in . Let (h. for each a in we de ne two morphisms ha . g) be an instance of PCP and assume that h. If (h. i. Theorem 2. ga) can only have solutions of the form dwe. g) of PCP. as an instance of PCP. In notations of (2. has a solution if and only if the same pair has a solution as an instance of MMPCP. The proof is from CHK]. cf. So assume that the pair (h. ha (e) = de. We use the method. to transform an instance of PCP to that of MMPCP such that both of these have a solution simultaneously. eg) ! ( fc. This requires to reduce PCP to MMPCP.We show that MMPCP is undecidable. Next we show that the instance (h. to prove the undecidability. a1 = d and ak = e. ga : ( fd. we conclude that it is undecidable whether for given morphisms h. ga) of PCP has a solution. then it has a solution also as an instance of MMPCP. g) has a solution as an instance of PCP. g : ! the instance (ha . g) has a solution as an instance of MMPCP and let w = a1 : : : ak be a solution of minimal length. since the pair (ha . let mappings l. ga(x) = r(g(x)) ga(d) = cdr(g(a)). ga (e) = e: for all x 2 . MMPCP is undecidable. also HaK]. ga) of PCP has a solution dwe. ha (d) = cl(h(a)). ga). Proof. w in . To simplify notation we denote h = ha and g = ga. Further.

10 . Then we have g(a1 : : : at?1 )h(at ) 2 cd( d)+(d )+. because otherwise there would be a shorter solution than w.3) matches with this pre x.e. Then there must be the smallest t such that gt = h or ht = g.3) has a pre x that ends with two consecutive letters of . we get that h(a1 : : : at?1 )g(at) 2 c(d )+( d)+. This contradiction proves the claim. Assume the contrary. : : : . Consider the rst alternative. k. Therefore we cannot have two consecutive letters of without having a factor dd rst. for some i.3) matches with this pre x. for which it suits very well. that h1 = h and g1 = g and we will show that hi = h and gi = g for all i = 1. similarly. because if hi 6= g for all i. We may assume. k ? 1. and if hi = g for some i. gi = h. But no pre x of the left hand side of (2. the left hand side of (2. by symmetry. i. then h1(a1 ) : : : hk (ak ) 2 c(d )+. But no pre x of the right hand side of (2. because g(a1) : : : g(ak ) 2 cd( d)+. Therefore we do not get two d's without having two consecutive letters of rst. We shall use MMPCP in the proof of the undecidability of the freeness of matrix monoids. and if.3) that ends with dd. then there is a pre x which is in cd( d)+(d )+. This is a contradiction. and so there is a pre x in the right hand side of (2.is not d or e if i = 2. : : : . then there is a pre x which is in c(d )+ . In the second alternative.

3 Mortality of Matrix Monoids Let S be a given nitely generated submonoid of n n matrices from Zn n. but our proof itself is simpler. for each word w. a2.S. First we de ne notions needed in the proof. must be injective.1 The undecidability of the mortality problem We prove that the mortality problem is undecidable for 3 3 matrices. We use the same method. In this section we consider the mortality problem. althought the idea remains the same. Let ? = fa1 . vv0). Paterson in 1970 Pat]. (uv) = njvj (u) + (v): 11 (3. for all u and v in ? . The basic idea of the proof is to reduce an instance of PCP to the mortality problem. determine whether there exists a sequence of matrices M1 . v0) represents pair the (uu0. We use an injective morphism from ? ? into N 3 3 to represent a pair of words in the multiplicative monoid of matrices. v) and (u0.1) . M2. This result was rst proved by M. `Given' here means that we are given a nite generator set of S . In other words. the function gives the value which w represents as an n-adic number. : : : . Determine whether the zero matrix belongs to S . 3. Problem 1. ang and de ne a function : ? ! N by (ai1 ai2 :::aik ) = k X j =1 ij nk?j and ( ) = 0: We see that. Then. Mk in S such that M1 M2 Mk = 0. We also note that. which is de ned next. He used clever coding techniques to make a reduction to PCP. the product of matrices representing pairs (u. :::. and because each natural number has a unique n-adic representation. of course. Let ? be an alphabet.

12 . : : : . We note that is a morphism from ? into N 2 2 . and if (u1. Now if i. :::. ng. if (u1. 1)-entry of the matrix (w). We are now ready to prove the undecidability result. i 1 for all i = 1. where two copies of is applied simultaneously in 3 3 matrices. then juj 0 jvj 0 (u) (v) = n(u) 1 = n(v) 1 njujnjvj 0 (u)njvj + (v) 1 = = njuvj 0 = (uv): (uv) 1 is also injective. v1)32 = (u2. Next we de ne a monoid morphism : ? ? ! N 3 3 . v1 )31 = (u2. 0 njuj 0 01 (u. j 2 f1. ) = I3.Next de ne a mapping : ? ! N 2 2 by (ai) = n 0 . we get that (ai) (aj ) = n 0 i 1 2 = nin+ j n 0 j 1 0 = njai aj j 0 : 1 (ai aj ) 1 Clearly this can be extended for all w 2 ? . Notice also that for the empty word we have ( . Theorem 3. 2. n.1. v2)31 .2) The fact that is a morphism follows from the fact that is a morphism. and therefore jwj 0 (w) = n(w) 1 : This can be proved by induction. v2)32 . The morphism is also doubly injective. then u1 = u2. because is injective and (w) is the (2. then v1 = v2. v) = @ 0 njvj 0A : (u) (v) 1 (3. which means that. The mortality problem is undecidable for 3 3-matrices with integer entries. since if u and v are in ? .

r > 0. Ak = A. s and r are integers. s) in L. q1p2 + q2 s1r2 + s2 1 then clearly BC is in Y . q. then 0 2 S.e. r1. First de ne matrix A. Y is a monoid. because if AWA = 0 for some W 2 L. : : : .5) for some t 1 and Wj 2 L. and that for all W (p. r. s)A = (p + q ? s)A: Next we show that 0 2 S () 9W 2 L : AWA = 0: (3. then 0 0 r 0A . s) = @0 q and p. q. Assume now that 0 2 S . q. If we assume that t > 1 and that t is minimal. 01 A = @?1 1 0 1 0 ?1A : 0 0 0 1 Let Y be the set of matrices 0p W (p. we have AW1 A AW2A AWt A = 0: 13 . then.3) (3. say B = W (p1. Since also I is in Y . A is an idempotent. Let L be a nitely generated submonoid of Y and S be the matrix monoid generated by fAg L.4) The reverse implication is trivial. r1r2 . r. for all j = 1. s 1 If B and C are in Y . 0 0 r1 r2 0A = W (p1p2 . r2. i. q1p2 + q2 . We notice that A2 = A. Since 0 2 L and for all k 1. s1r2 + s2 ). q1 . s 0. t. q. q2 . 0 pp 1 2 BC = @ 0 1 AW (p. because A is an idempotent. s1) and C = W (p2. where p.Proof. q. there = must be product AW1 AW2A AWt A = 0 (3. s2). r.

1) of . This is equivalent to the condition v = a1 g(w) = a1h(w): Therefore S is mortal if and only if the instance (h. (u) (v) 1 where u is in and v in ? . Because u = h(w) 2 and a1 2 . such that AWA = 0.2).3) we get that. Clearly. if m = 0. We just add zero columns to the right hand side and zero rows to the bottom of all matrices in the proof of Theorem 3. then AW1 A = 0. The products of these new matrices depend only on product of original 3 3 matrices. By the claim (3. a3g. 14 . so that n = 3. equivalent to the equation v = a1 u. g(a)) and Wa0 = (h(a).6). S is mortal if and only if there is a matrix W generated by matrices of L such that AWA = 0. a2 . Let L be the set of all matrices Wa and Wa0 . Both of these cases lead to a contradiction with the minimality of t and therefore there exists W in L. g) be an instance of PCP. By (3. where a 2 . we must have = 0 W = Ww1 Ww2 Wwn where wi's are in and w = w1 wn. Consider now a matrix monoid S generated by fAg L.Now by equation (3.1 to get n n matrices. then t is not a minimal. and this proves the claim. it follows that W is of the form 0 3juj 0 01 W = @ 0 3jvj 0A . Assume that ? = fa1.6) for all a 2 . and from the properties of the morphism . Let (h. these matrices Wa and Wa0 are in Y . This proof works also for n n matrices where n > 3. Next we reduce an instance of PCP to the mortality problem using mapping from ? ? into N 3 3 as de ned in (3.4). g : ! and = fa2. where h. a1g(a)) (3. g) of PCP has a solution. and if m 6= 0. De ne the matrices Wa = (h(a). by the property (3. a3 g. for some integer m.3) we have to analyse the condition 3juj + (u) ? (v) = 0: This is. From the de nition (3. mAW2 A AWt A = 0: Now we have two cases.

.. The mortality problem is undecidable for n n matrices with 3. . We used only one special matrix A when Paterson had two of them.. The proof of the following theorem is from CKa]. using the matrices Mi.. Mk with dimension n = 3. the idea of the proof of Theorem 3. . C B C and B = B0 I B.2. . By Theorem 3. . 0 Mk 0 1 0 0 0 BI 0 . We shall construct two matrices A and B of dimension nk such that the semigroup S generated by fA. B g contains the zero matrix. by the choice of this A. The construction is quite simple.. As mentioned before the PCP(7) is proved to be undecidable in MSe]. A and B are de ned with n n blocks. Theorem 3. . Given two square matrices A and B with integer entries. . it is undecidable whether the semigroup generated by fA.. where the semigroup is generated by only two matrices with integer entries.. this shows that the problem is undecidable. Proof. .1. C A 0 I 0 1 . C B . we managed to simplify some details in the proof. Also. A is a block diagonal and B is a permutation matrix: 0M1 0 B 0 M2 A = B . We shall show that this problem is undecidable.1 and on a simple trick to represent a matrix semigroup with k generators of dimension n in a semigroup with only two generators of dimension nk. .1 we know that the presence of the zero matrix is undecidable for a semigroup T generated by M1.1 is the same as in the original proof by Paterson. : : : . . B g contains the zero matrix if and only if T contains it. Since an algorithm to decide this property for S could then be turned into an algorithm for any nitely generated semigroup. Corollary 3. . . also for T .. As mentioned before. where k = 15. B @.. 0A @ 0 15 0 I 0 0C C 0 0C C .. 0 .integer entries and n 3. . Therefore the size of the alphabet in the proof can be set to be seven and therefore we need 15 matrices in that proof.2 The mortality of semigroups with two generators In this section we consider the mortality problem in the case. The proof is based on Theorem 3. the n n identity I and the n n zero. .

. It follows from the previous theorem that the mortality problem is undecidable for semigroups generated by two matrices. since B is invertible. namely its diagonal is Mi. if the dimension of the matrices is at least 3 15 = 45. any element of the semigroup S can be written in the form B tCi1 Ci2 Cim with m 0. : : : . 16 .. where this problem is shown to be decidable for 2 2 matrices. the element Ci = B k?i+1AB i?1 is a block diagonal like A. Mi+1 . we have Ci1 Ci2 Cim = 0. .. if i = 1. The matrix Dj is block diagonal and its j 'th diagonal block is Mi1 Mi2 Mim = 0. We shall return to the question of the mortality of semigroups generated by two matrices in the Chapter 7. 0 C : A 0 0 Mi So Ci+1 is of the required form. if we assume that the zero matrix is in S .. Mi?1.. assume that T contains the zero matrix and that Mi1 Mi2 Mim = 0. Now the left upper block of the product Ci1 Ci2 Cim is 0 = Mi1 Mi2 Mim . . Let Dj = Ci1?j+1Ci2?j+1 Cim ?j+1 for 1 j k. Then Ci+1 = B k?(i+1)+1 AB i+1?1 = B ?1CiB . Therefore. Using the relation B k = Ink . . which is an element of S . Therefore. . . We shall prove next that for any index 1 i k. 1 t i < n. . . the product D1 D2 Dk . Assume now that there exists i such that the claim holds for all t.It is quite clear that B ?1 = B k?1 = B T and that B k = Ink . C C @ A 0 0 Mi?1 0 0Mi+1 0 01 B 0 Mi+2 . but with the blocks circularly permuted. then C1 = B k?1+1AB 1?1 = B k AI = IAI = A.. . which means that the zero matrix is in T . C C = B .. . . . The proof is by induction on i.. Conversely. . . B @ . where the indices are taken modulo k... is the zero matrix. : : : ... Mk . and 0 1 0 0 0 Mi BMi+1 0 0 0C B C B 0 Mi+2 0 ?1 C B = B T B 0C B i B . First. . M1 .

Clearly. We shall show in this section that also the existence of the zero element is an undecidable property. then the zero matrix is not in S either. it is undecidable whether a given nitely generated matrix semigroup of n zero element. Then by the de nition of a zero element x1 = x1 x2 = x2 . Assume that the matrices M1 . Assume to the contrary that it is decidable whether S contains a zero element. Let (S. we check if it is the zero matrix or not. for all a in S . Lemma 3. since X is a zero element if and only if M1X = = Mk X = X = XM1 = = XMk : Now when we nd the zero element.3. For n 3. Hence. This follows. and if there exists a zero element. say x1 and x2 . we check all the elements in S until we nd it. Proof. Then we can also decide whether the zero matrix is in S . We begin with an easy semigroup theoretical lemma. if a matrix semigroup S contains the zero matrix. xa = ax = x. Theorem 3.e. we can decide whether S contains the zero matrix.1.3. : : : . the existence of an element x in a semigroup S such that. since if there does not exist a zero element in S . The zero element in a semigroup is unique. then it has also a zero element.1. The checking is easy to do. 17 . In this section we consider the existence of the zero element in a matrix semigroup. ) be a semigroup and to the contrary that S contains two zero elements.3 The existence of the zero element in matrix semigroups In the two previous sections we considered the existence of the zero matrix in a nitely generated matrix semigroup. n matrices with integer entries contains the Proof. a contradiction with Theorem 3. Mk are the given generator matrices of the semigroup. Next theorem is obvious after the previous lemma. i. indeed.

This shows that if B commutes with A it is of the required form. because that proof was based on the injective morphism from into N 3 3 . since the other direction is obvious. What can we say about the problem for 2 2 matrices? Not much. AB = BA if and 0 e 0 only if B = 0 h . The Jordan 18 . then it must be proved with some other techniques than the undecidability for 3 3 matrices. This proof is presented in Chapter 7. We shall now prove this fact. where b = 0. Lemma 3.2. where a 6= d. then for all B 2 C 2 2 . AB = 0 e BA if and only if B = 0 f . One thing we can say is that if the mortality problem for 2 2 matrices with arbitrary many generators is undecidable. e 2) Assume that B = g f and that AB = BA. it can be proved decidable in two generator case.4 The mortality problem in dimension two It is clear that for 1 1 matrices the mortality problem is decidable. Now we see that (AB )12 = af + bh = eb + fa = (BA)12 . and conversily. 1) Assume that B = g f and that AB = BA.3. b 6 1) If A = a a . and 2 2 . we prove a lemma concerning the commutation of certain special 2 2 matrices. Then (AB )12 = h af = fd = (BA)11 . where we have more than two generators. but before there is no such morphism into N that. e 0 2) If A = a d . Also (AB )21 = dg = ga = (BA)21 . it follows that f = 0. The reason we need the previous lemma is that we use in the next proof the existence of so called Jordan normal form of square matrices. and since a 6= d. so g = 0 and we are done. The only possibility to have the zero matrix in S is that it is one of the generators. because it is not known whether the mortality problem is decidable or undecidable for 2 2 matrices in the case. so h = e. These imply h that (AB )11 = ae + bg = ae = (BA)11 and therefore g = 0. Let A be an upper triangular 2 2 matrix over C . Clearly also (AB )21 = 0 = (BA)21 and (AB )22 = ae = (BA)22 . As we mentioned before. then for all matrices B 2 C 2 2 . e Proof.

0). and E = (e). The diagonal of J consists of the eigenvalues of A. It is su cient to prove the theorem in the case where this case the monoid S = has a generating set = f0. In L = f(0. 1g. To simplify the notations we set a = (0. where is the empty word. d = ( . say . 2) If A has only one eigenvalue. but we use C 2 2 here. Then A = 0 0 . because in the proof we need the Jordan normal form of matrices. 0). There is no injective morphism : ! C2 2 for any alphabet with at least two elements. then then J = 0 0 or J= 0 1 . we can suppose that A is in the Jordan normal form. Since the conjugation by an invertible matrix does not in uence the injectivity. Assume to the contrary that there is an injective morphism from S into C 2 2 . For a matrix A in Z2 2. and let A = (a).4. ). ( . A = PJP ?1. b = (1. (1. since ac = ca and ad = da in 19 . )g. which is similar to A.2.normal form J of a matrix A in Zn n is an upper triangular matrix. and the matrices commuting with A are exactly the diagonal matrices by Lemma 3. there exists an invertible matrix P in C n n such that. For the proof of these facts we refer to Gan]. 1). c = ( . C = (c). Therefore C and D must be diagonal. ( . ( . ). ). Proof. D = (d). ). then J = 0 0 . say and . Actually we need this property only for morphisms into N 2 2 . Now we are ready for the theorem. that is. the Jordan normal form has two possibilities: 1) If A has two di erent eigenvalues. ). The next theorem shows that there is no injective morphism from into C 2 2 . which is in C 2 2 . Theorem 3. Suppose that A has two di erent eigenvalues. B = (b). 1) and e = ( . since the eigenvalues are in C . the proof of it being from CHK].

cf. and then AB = 0. especially with B . if a11 = a22 = 0. then A = 0 0 or A = 0 1 . Then the zero matrix belongs to the semigroup generated by L if and only if there are matrices A and B in L such that Then AB = a110b11 a11 b12 + a12 b22 : a22 b22 We see that the product is also an upper triangular matrix. So we have four cases. and they commute with each others. 11 a A = a0 a12 22 11 b and B = b0 b12 : 22 entries.S . but b and a do not commute in S . since c and d do not commute in S . which contradicts the injectivity. This special case is not very important and it does not say anything about the general case. necessarily either a11 or b11 equals with the zero and either a22 or b22 equals with the zero. but. To get zeros to the diagonal. 20 . Let A and B be 2 2 upper triangular matrices. The second case is that a11 = b22 = 0. Sch]. it is enough to consider only two of those.5. The rst case is impossible. First. which yields a contradiction as above. Theorem 3. Let L be a set of 2 2 upper triangular matrices with integer A11 = 0 and B22 = 0: Proof. because then A = I commutes with all matrices. In the second case y A would commute only with the matrices of the form x x by Lemma 0 3. We end this chapter by showing that the mortality problem is decidable for the 2 2 upper triangular matrices. The mortality of 2 2 matrices is also connected to other branches of mathematics. It follows that also matrices C and D commute. Both directions of the equivalence follow from this. If A has only one eigenvalue.2. by symmetry. then AA = 0.

i. but we will present a proof which was developed by J. Karhumaki CHK]. whether two matrix semigroups have an equal element. : : : . ang. This result was rst proved by Klarner. Next we de ne the freeness problem for square matrices. Assume that is an alphabet. where n 3. matrices with non-negative integer entries is free? Problem 2. Harju and J. 4. This proof is shorter and also gives a better bound for the number of matrices. The proof uses the same techniques than the proof of the mortality problem. but instead of an instance of PCP we will reduce an instance of MMPCP to this problem. Cassaigne. T. we rst prove that this problem is undecidable for 3 3 matrices. and let function : ! N correspond a value of word as an n-adic representation as in the mortality chapter.4 Freeness of Matrix Semigroups In this chapter we concentrate on the freeness property of semigroups which is one of the fundamental properties of semigroups and monoids. Recall that a semigroup S is said to be free if there exists a subset X of S such that every element of S has a unique factorization over X . 21 . because a monoid M is said to be free if M nf1g is a free semigroup. and therefore also for all n n matrices.e. Birget and Satter eld KBS] in 1990. every element of S can be uniquely expressed as a product of elements of X . = fa1 . Determine whether a given nitely generated semigroup of n n As in the case of the mortality problem. In the nal section of this chapter we prove that it is undecidable. The results in this chapter also concern monoids. After that we consider the case of 2 2 matrices.1 The undecidability of the freeness We shall now prove that the freeness problem is undecidable for 3 3 matrices.

we may assume that h and g are morphism from into i. 1 1 where is the injective morphism de ned in Section 3. Birget and Satter eld KBS]. Next de ne the set M = f 1(a. Proof. v))T = @ 0 njvj 0 0 ! N 3 3 by setting (u) (v)A . Hence the nonfreeness. This is the rst reason that this proof is better than the proof of Klarner. Clearly also 1 is a doubly injective morphism. h(a)).1. g) be an instance of MMPCP. Theorem 4. jq be in M . gjs (bjs )). q. we have: i1 : : : ip = j1 : : : jq in S =( j1 : : : jq )2. p 1 and s = 1. with hit and gjs in fh. The second reason is that they needed 29 matrices when we needed only 18. Of course.3 =( j1 : : : jq )1. Let i1 . j1 . : : : . gg and ait and bjs in . it = 1(ait . g) of MMPCP has a solution.3 and ( i1 : : : ip )2. Let (h. : : : . It is undecidable whether a semigroup generated by nite set of upper-triangular 3 3 matrices of non-negative integers is free. g(a)) j a 2 g and let S be the semigroup generated by M .We now de ne a mapping 1 : 1 (u. for t = 1. We have proved that S is nonfree if and only if the instance (h.3 : if and only if ( i1 : : : ip )1. by the de nition of 1 (and ). Then. assuming that in the PCP we consider instances over 7 22 .1. and so also the freeness. v ) = ( 0njuj 0 (u. : : : . 1(a. hit (ait )) and js = (bjs .3 But this is equivalent to ai1 : : : aip = bj1 : : : bjq and hi1 (ai1 ) : : : hip (aip ) = gj1 (bj1 ) : : : gjq (bjq ) by the uniqueness of the n-adic representations. We could have used also the morphism itself in the above proof but we prefered to formulate the result for upper triangular matrices. they are endomorphisms. ip . is an undecidable property.e. : : : .

This problem seems to be very di cult. it is not known whether the freeness problem is decidable or undecidable in the case of 2 2-matrices. where the semigroup is generated by two upper triangular 2 2 matrices over Q .4. Chapter 3. cf. i. no general method for deciding the freeness was found. : : : . if k = fa0 . BeP].e. cf. This is due to Theorem 3. whether the freeness problem is decidable for the 2 2 matrices over nonnegative integers.e. then the morphism de ned by i ai 7! k 1 0 is one such embedding. in CHK] Cassaigne. we know that if it is undecidable. But.in the undecidability proof of the MMPCP we added two letters to this alphabet. Harju and Karhumaki considered a restricted case. again.2 The freeness problem in dimension two As in the case of the mortality problem. Indeed. Corollary 4. It is also known that every free semigroup + can be embedded into the semigroup of 2 2-matrices over k nonnegative integer.1. Such embeddings can be done in many di erent ways. The next corollary is clear by extending the matrices in the above proof in an obvious way. In the theory of semigroups. as can be done. Another one is the embedding de ned in the chapter considering the mortality problem. Therefore it is natural to ask. ak?1g. It is known that it is decidable whether a nite set of words is a free generating set. i. into N 2 2 . it is known that every nitely generated free semigroup is isomorphic to some free word semigroup + . For example. whether a semigroup generated by a nite set of words is free. gular matrices with non-negative integer entries for any n 3 . 23 . a1. but even in this case. where k is k the number of letters in the alphabet .letter domain alphabet. MSe] . The freeness problem is undecidable for n n upper trian- 4. it cannot be proved using a construction similar to the one used for 3 3-matrices.

He asked. Since 1 is doubly injective. h(a)) and Ga = 1(a. respectively. g(a)) for all a in . and the proof we present suits also for the variant of Krom. determine whether there exists a matrix X . Proof. Here `given' means again that we are given the generators of M and N . Clearly this proof works for the variant of Krom. where h and g are morphism from into . The existence of a common element is actually an independent problem and it is not connected to the freeness problem. since in the proof neccessarily k = t. Given two nitely generated subsemigroups of Mn(Z). 24 .3 Common elements in semigroups In this section we consider the existence of a common element in two matrix semigroups. M. which is both in M and in N . if n 3.2. Now let SH and SG be two semigroups generated by the matrices Ha = 1(a.4. g) be an instance of PCP. Assume that and let 1 be the morphism de ned in Section 4. Let (h. Krom considered a variant of this problem in Kro]. Theorem 4.1. but we present it here. It is undecidable whether two nitely generated subsemigroups of M3 (Z) have a common element. whether there exists a matrix X in both M and N such that X is a product of equally many generators of both M and N . say M and N . since in the proof of the undecidability we use the same mapping 1 as de ned earlier in this chapter. we get that Ha1 if and only if Hak = Gb1 Gbt a1 : : : ak = b1 : : : bt and h(a1 ) : : : h(ak ) = g(b1) : : : g(bt ): Therefore the claim follows from the undecidability of the PCP. We shall prove that the problem of equal element is undecidable. Problem 3.

such that all k element subsets of Y belong to the same block. Theorem 5.1 The decidability of the niteness As mentioned above. Given natural numbers m. cf. we are given the generator matrices of S . At the end of this chapter we mention also some other results which give better upper bounds than the bound proved here. if ap = aq for some natural numbers p < q. which depends on n and on the number of generators of the semigroup. k) and every partition of k element subsets of X into m blocks. If every element of S is a torsion. n. over any eld. Natural extensions of the niteness problem are the ones considering semigroups of matrices over the rational numbers Q and. with the cardinality n. Simon in 1977. Our proofs and notions are from the article MaS] by A. We need also the next theorem. Also these extensions can be proved to be decidable. then S is a torsion semigroup (or a periodic semigroup). 5. there exists a subset Y of X . Note that a matrix A from M (N ) is torsion if and only if there exists a natural number m. if S is nite. 25 . An element a of S is called a torsion (or periodic). then there exist a natural number R(m. First we need some new de nitions. which is a classical result of Ramsey Ram]. then an upper bound of the cardinality of S can be computed. n and k such that m 2 and n k 1. Let S be a semigroup.1. we shall show that there exists an upper bound for the cardinality of a nite subsemigroup of N n n .e. MaS].5 Finiteness of Matrix Semigroups We are given a nitely generated subsemigroup S of N n n . In this chapter we consider the problem which asks: Problem 4. in general. i. such that (Ar )ij m for all r. The proof we present is a combinatorial one. n. Determine whether the semigroup S is nite or not? We show that this problem is decidable by showing that. Mandel and I. k) such that for every set X of cardinality at least R(m.

there is a directed path (or walk) from i to j and from j to i.Ramsey's theorem has many equivalent formulations and there exists a branch in combinatorics. there is a directed edge from i to j in E with label Aij . Next we de ne a graph representation of a matrix in Mn(N ). GRS]. if for all i and j in VH . Before our next lemma we de ne one more property of graphs. er . For an edge e.1. we denote its label by (e). Assume that A is in Mn(N ). whenever Aij 6= 0. where ij 's are vertices. The next lemma follows from the above de nitions. E ). We say that j the length of T is r. For a walk T = (i0. : : : . such that. Let G be a directed graph. and ei is an Q edge from ij?1 to ij . : : : . nor two directed cycles which are connected by a path. we de ne a graph GA to have a vertex set V = n = f1. Lemma 5. Lemma 5. EH ). where V is the set of vertices and E is the set of directed edges. cf.1) 22 23 0 0 B33 26 .2. Proof. For all r in N . Let A be a matrix in Mn(N ). (c) There exists a permutation matrix P such that P ?1AP has the block form 0B B B 1 @ 011 B12 B13A . (5. (Ar )ij is the sum of the labels of the length r walks from i to j in GA . then this is clear by the de nition of GA. G = (V. which is based on this theorem. we de ne the label (T ) to be r=1 (ej ). H = (VH . Then a subgraph H of G. the claim holds. where VH V and EH E . Now (Ak+1)ij = (A Ak )ij = k X h=1 Aih(Ak )hj . ng and an edge set E . whenever r k. e1 . namely The Ramsey Theory. (b) GA contains neither a directed cycle with label at least 2. ir ) in GA. which is the sum of all labels of walks of length k + 1 from i to j . This means that for all i and j . (Ar )ij is the sum of the labels of all walks from i to j of length r. We prove this by induction on r. is called a strong component of G. Then the following statements are equivalent: (a) A is a torsion. If r = 1. Assume that for some k 1. For a given A in Mn(N ). i1.

The length of such a walk is clearly (m1 + m2 )l1l2 + l3 . (5. Therefore by Lemma 5. 3. let A be in Mn (N ) and let GA be its graph representation. Assume now that GA has two distinct cycles T1 and T2 through vertices i and j . We say that a strong component of the graph GA is trivial if it contains no edges.2) 8 i 2 Vk . 2. respectively. Consider the walks of the form T1m1 l2 T3T2m2 l1 . such that if there is a edge from i to j in Gk . If m = m1 + m2 . Therefore we are able to de ne total orders 1 and 3 on V1 and V3. Denote by l the length of T .e. j 2 Vl : k < l =) (i) < (j ): (5. (j) . then for all m in N we have at least m di erent paths from i to j of length ml1 l2 + l3. and hence A is not a torsion. i 6= j : (i) < (j ) () i <k j for k = 1. 3. Then the matrix P ?1AP satis es the condition (P ?1AP )ij = A (i). 3. By Lemma 5. (j). and that there is a path T3 from i to j . Because the vertices that are in some cycle of GA belong to V2. i. such that 8 i.1. Let Bij denote the restriction of the matrix P ?1AP to (Vi) (Vj ). V3 = nn(V1 V2 ): Let Gk denote the subgraph of GA induced by Vk for k = 1. V1 = fi 2 nnV2 j there exists a path from i to some vertex in V2g. Now there exists a permutation of n. Consider the following partition of the vertex set of GA: V2 = fi 2 n j i belongs to a nontrivial strong component of GAg.3).2).3) Such a permutation can be constructed in such a way that n is rst divided into three parts according to (5.where some blocks might be empty. i. and then the permutation is de ned using (5. respectively.e. (Aml1 l2+l3 )ij m. Next we show that (b) implies (c). j 2 Vk . (P ?1A)ij = A (i). clearly l 1. 2. because there is m di erent ways to express m as a sum m1 + m2 . Because no vertices of V3 is connected 27 .1. and so A is not a torsion.j from the left permutes the rows of A according to . and B22 is a permutation matrix. since the multiplication by P ?1 = (i). (Alr )ii (T )r 2r .j . To show that (a) implies (b). Assume that GA contains a cycle T with (T ) 2. then i k j . it follows that G1 and G3 are acyclic. and the multiplication by P from the right permutes the columns of A (i)j according to . Let lk be the length of Tk for k = 1. Let P to be the permutation matrix de ned by Pij = i. Proof. and assume also that i is a vertex in T . Gk consists of all vertices of Vk and all edges between the vertices of Vk . B11 and B33 are upper triangular with zeros on the diagonals.

2) it also follows that they are upper triangular. and in G (A) this label is exactly 2. it follows that B11 and B33 have zeros on the diagonals: from (5. 2g and a b = minfab. for a matrix A in Mn (N ). and if GA has a cycle with a label at least 2.to V1 or V2 (by de nition). the graph GA satis es the condition (b) of Lemma 5. 2g. A is a torsion. Clearly. so n n B11 = B33 = 0. Similarly. Now we have 00 B 0 B 0 1 12 13 0 (P ?1AP )r = P ?1Ar P = @0 I B23 A . Conditions (b) imply that the strong components of GA are cycles with label 1. As corollaries of the previous lemma we prove two lemmas. Therefore B22 is a permutation matrix. it follows from (5. there are no edges. Therefore. such that i and j belong to di erent strong components and there is a an edge from i to j in GA. necessarily one of the edges on this cycle has a label at least 2.2 if and only if the graph G (A) satis es it. Further since no element in V1 V3 belongs to any nontrivial strong component of GA. 0 0 0 because B11 and B33 are upper triangular with zeros on the diagonals. but rst we must set a few new de nitions. Also B21 is zero. because there exists no path from the vertices of V2 to the vertices of V1. De ne a semiring N 2 = f0. 1. 28 .e. G (A) has exactly the same edges than GA. then GA contains a cycle with a label at least 2. Hence 00 B 0 B 0 B 0 1 12 12 23 0 B23 A P (P ?1AP )2r = P ?1A2r P = P ?1 @0 I 00 B00 B0 0B0 1 0 12 12 23 0 B23 A P: (P ?1AP )3r = P ?1A3r P = P ?1 @0 I 0 0 0 Therefore A2r = A3r . then so does G (A). and because no two distinct cycles are joined by a path. for a permutation matrix P there exists a natural number r such that P r = I . i. (the product of labels of a path is ). 2g and let denote the set inclusion : Mn (N 2 ) ! Mn(N ). Note that. only vice versa. Let r be such a natural r number that B22 = I and r n.3) that B31 and B32 are zero matrices. if G (A) contains a cycle with a label 2. since in GA. 2g N with the operations a b = minfa + b. Let : Mn(N ) ! Mn(N 2 ) be the monoid morphism given by (A)ij = minfAij . Finally we show that (c) implies (a).

if they are not zero matrices.We shall use these considerations as the nal conclusion in the proof of the next lemma. Lemma 5. ((P ?1AP )2) = (P ?1A2P ) = (P ?1AP ): Now since B11 and B33 are upper triangular with zeros on the diagonals. Recall that an element a of a semiring is called idempotent. from B22 = B22 it follows that B22 = I .2.1) of Lemma 5.4). The next lemma shows how the torsions of the monoid Mn (N ) are connected to the idempotents of the monoid Mn(N 2 ).4. Now 00 (P ?1AP )2 = P ?1A2 P = P ?1 @0 00 0 ?1 AP )3 = P ?1A3 P = P ?1 @0 (P C I 0 C I 0 0 CE E A P.3. Hence P ?1AP is of the form (5. and there exists a permutation matrix P such that P ?1AP has a block form 00 C D1 @0 I E A . graphs G (A) and G (B) are equal. Let A and B be matrices of Mn(N ) such that (A) = (B ). Proof. and by multiplying this equation by P from the left and by P ?1 from the right we get that A2 = A3. then A2 = A3 . If A 2 Mn(N ) is a torsion and (A) is an idempotent. then on each power the number of zero entries grows. Since B22 is a permutation 2 matrix and therefore invertible. if GA satis es Condition (b) of Lemma 5. if a2 = a. Let P be a permutation matrix such that P ?1 AP has the form (5.4) where I is an identity matrix. Indeed. Lemma 5. 0 1 CE E A P: 0 1 So we have that P ?1A2P = P ?1A3P . Therefore.2. Then A is a torsion if and only if B is a torsion. 0 0 0 (5. B11 and B33 must be zero matrices. Proof. 29 . Because (A) = (B ). Since (A) is idempotent in Mn (N 2 ) and is a morphism. so does GB .

i. Let A in (S ) be idempotent and let B in S be such that (B ) = A. such that all 2-subsets of Y belong to the same block. Since fi1. Let us partition the 2-subsets of f1. say QA. 4. 2) and g(n. there exists a permutation matrix P such that P ?1 (A)P has a block form (5. i3g.e. First we show that (a) implies (b). and by Lemma 5. (b) For all A 2 (S ).2. (A)2 = (A)3 . this implies that (A)2 = (A)3 . Since S is generated by k of its elements.e. i2 g. Let S be a subsemigroup of Mn (N ). and let u and v in X be such that x = uy1y2y3v. i2. i3 . such that (x) = (y). with 1 i1 < i2 < i3 < i4 r. Proof of the Claim. it is clear that (P ) = P and 30 . k) where g is a function depending only on n and k. there is an epimorphism. : : : . Let m = 3n2 = jMn(N 2 )j. j g j i < j and ( (xixi+1 : : : xj )) = Ag: Since r p. k) = p=0 ki. we have A = (y1) = (y2) = (y1y2) = (y3): (5. i4g. Since B is a torsion. p = (b) ?1 R(m. fi1 . generated by k of its elements. so is (A). Proof. fi2 .4. where X is the free word monoid generated by an alphabet X of cardinality k. Let yk = xik : : : xik+1 ?1 for k = 1.We are ready for the main theorem of this section. it follows that (B ) = ( (A)).5) Now. a surjective morphism. rg into m blocks fQA j A 2 Mn(N 2 )g.1. Since A = ( (A)). we have that A = (y1y2) = (y1) (y2) = A2.4). i4g are in QA.4. a set Y = fi1 . since A is idempotent. Claim. Second we show thatP implies (c). If x in X is a word of length jxj p. with xi 's in X . because is a morphism (since and are). By our assumption (b). there exists. by letting QA = ffi. Since P and P ?1 are permutation matrices. : X ! S . then there exists another word y in X . i3g and fi3 . The following statement are equivalent: (a) S is nite. 3. if A is idempotent then (A)2 = (A)3 . by Theorem 5. Theorem 5. then we can state an upper bound for cardinality of S . (c) jS j g(n.3. Without loss of generality we may assume i that S is a monoid. 2. It shows that if a nitely generated subsemigroup S of Mn (N ) is nite. A is an idempotent in (S ). Let r = jxj and let x = x1 x2 : : : xr . Denote the composition ( ) by . with jyj < jxj. it is torsion. and by Lemma 5. Since S is nite. i. We continue by proving the next claim. by Lemma 5.

P ?1 (yk )P has the block form 00 C D 1 @0 Ik Ekk A : 0 0 0 This implies that 00 C C E 1 00 C D 1 1 1 2 3 3 (P ?1 (y1)P )(P ?1 (y2)P )(P ?1 (y3)P ) = @0 I E2 A @0 I E3 A 0 0 0 0 0 0 00 C C E 1 1 1 3 = @0 I E3 A = (P ?1 (y1)P )(P ?1 (y3)P ): 0 0 0 Now P ?1 (y1y2y3)P = P ?1 (y1y3)P . 4. (y1y2y3) = (y1y3). Seidl proved in WeS] that the number R(m. Jacob. hence jS j g(n.(P ?1) = P ?1. then S is nite. We mention that A. k) + 1 di erent matrices from S to see that S is in nite. 3. and it follows from (5. Corollary 5. Thus. for k = 1. Their proof is based on the theory of automata. In our proof we had p = R(m.1. and by some of the authors already mentioned in this chapter. i. k). and it is di erent from the one we presented. Hence by the de nition of and . but these Ramsey numbers are very large. Weber and Seidl also mention in the appendix of WeS] that it can be decided in time O(n6 jH j). It is decidable whether a given nitely generated subsemigroup of Mn (N ) is nite. such that jzj < p. 31 . Proof.5) that P ?1 (A)P = (P ?1 (yk )P ). whether a subsemigroup of Mn (N ) generated by the set H is nite. Ja1] and Ja2]. Weber and H. 4. 2) can be replaced by the number de2 n!e? 1.e. 2). (x) = (uy1y3v) and this completes the proof of the Claim. 2. for example by G. since jy2j > 0. It is clear that (c) implies (a). The previous theorem shows that we have to nd only g(n. If we cannot nd that many di erent matrices. It follows that (x) = (z) for some word z in X . where e is the natural base of logarithms. There exists also many other papers concerning this upper bound and the exact algorithm.

then it is not free.Mandel and Simon also proved in MaS]. i. and if it is. 32 . Theorem 5. We can decide whether the semigroup generated by a given matrix is nite or not. that there is an upper bound for the cardinality of the nite subsemigroups of Mn(Q ) and of Mn(F ). and otherwise it is free. It is also decidable.3. It is decidable whether a semigroup generated by one integer matrix is free.e. the mortality problem for the semigroup generated by one matrix is decidable. Theorem 5. Proof. The next two theorems are corollaries of the result of Mandel and Simon for Mn(Q ). we check if one of these matrices is zero. We can decide whether the matrix semigroup generated by this matrix is nite or not. The same conclusion holds for the decidability of the existence of the identity matrix as a power of given matrix.4. Proof. and if the semigroup is nite. where F is an arbitrary eld. It is decidable whether some power of a given integer matrix is zero.

1 The undecidability of the zero in the right upper corner We begin with some de nitions for the proof. We shall prove that also in this case the problem is undecidable. when the dimension of the matrices is large enough. a2g. First we have to recall and introduce few notions and functions. Problem 5.6 Zero in the Right Upper Corner The problem considered in this chapter is called the zero in the right upper corner. In the latter part of this chapter we consider the above problem in the case where we have only two generators. and that for all u. and de ne a mapping 2 : ? ? ! Z3 3 by 01 2 (u. i. v in ? (uv) = (v) + njvj (u): (6. For a given nite subset of Zn n. and it is also a 1 This mapping is clearly injective. i.e. :::. because . then the problem is undecidable. an M in the semigroup generated by these matrices such that M1n = 0. ? = fa1 .e. v ) = @0 (v) 2jvj 0 0 33 (u) ? (v) 2juj ? 2jvj A : 2juj is injective. Let ? = fa1 .1) Assume now that n = 2. The method we use is the usual coding of pairs of words into 3 3 matrices. determine whether there exists In the rst section we shall show that if n 3. 6. : ? ! N such that (ai1 ai2 :::aik ) = k X j =1 ij nk?j and (1) = 0: We recall that is injective. a2. ang be an alphabet and let function be as in Chapter 2.

it is undecidable whether a nitely generated subsemigroup of Mn (Z) contains a matrix M with M1n = 0. It is undecidable whether a nitely generated subsemigroup of M3 (Z) contains a matrix M with M13 = 0. it must be proved with some other method than the one used in the proof of the previous theorem. and de ne the matrices Ma = 2(h(a). g(a)) for all a in . and the claim follows from the undecidability of PCP. Theorem 6. We note again. because 2 is morphism. v1 ) 2 (u2. g) be an instance of PCP. that if it is undecidable. 2 (u1 . Floyd in Man]. because is injective. (h(w)) = (g(w)).e. If n 3. Corollary 6. Because we may add zero columns to the left and zero rows to the bottom of the matrices in the previous proof. i. v1. we get that M13 = 0 if and only if h(w) = g(w). v2 in ? .morphism.1. Proof. PCP(7) is undecidable. we get the next corollary. M13 = 0 if and only if (h(a1)h(a2 ):::h(am )) = (g(a1)g(a2):::g(am)). where w = a1 a2 : : : am . let h and g be morphisms from into ? . Let (h. Now. The decidability of the existence of the zero in the right upper corner for 2 2 matrices is an open question. u2.1. since. v1v2 ): = 0 2jv1v2 j 0 0 2ju1u2 j The next theorem is attributed to R.W. v2 ) 01 (v ) (u ) ? (v )1 01 (v ) (u ) ? (v )1 1 1 1 2 2 2 = @0 2jv1j 2ju1j ? 2jv1j A @0 2jv2j 2ju2j ? 2jv2j A 0 0 2ju1j 0 0 2ju2j 01 (v ) + (v )2jv1j (u ) ? (v ) + (v )(2ju2j ? 2jv2j) 1 2 1 2 2 1 ju2 j ( (u1 ) ? (v1 )) B C +2 = B0 jv1 j 2jv2 j jv1 j (2ju2 j ? 2jv2 j ) + 2ju2 j (2ju1 j ? 2jv1 j )C @ A 2 2 ju1 j2ju2 j 0 01 (v v 0 (u u ) ? (v v )1 2 1 2) 1 2 1 2 (6.1) @ 2ju1u2j ? 2jv1v2 j A = 2(u1u2. for a matrix M = Ma1 Ma2 Mam . as remarked before. since for all u1. 34 . Note that in the proof we needed 7 generators. Then.

. . but we shall use them as blocks in the matrices with dimension nk +3.6. namely X = 1 0 ::: 0 ? 01 B0C . . .2 The two generator case In Chapter 3 we considered the mortality problem in the case. . . . . B 0g has an element such that it has a zero in the right upper corner. Theorem 6. . . C . .2. B0C @A 1 so XMY is the entry in the right upper corner of M in Zn n. It is undecidable whether the semigroup generated by fA0. : : : . . We used the construction from matrices M1 . . .. C @ A 0 Now we de ne the matrices A0 and B 0 with dimension nk + 3 to be 00 1 U 1 1 00 1 U 1 1 B B 0 1C 0 1C A0 = B0 0 A V C and B 0 = B0 1 B V C : A A @0 0 @0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 Note the di erence in the second diagonal entry. C C @.. where the semigroup is generated by two matrices.. Next de ne two vectors of dimension nk. C C and B = B0 I 0 A = B . and Y = B . B .. . .C U= B . 0A @ A 0 0 Mn 0 0 I 0 We cannot apply these matrices to the problem of the zero in the right upper corner. . First we de ne two vectors of dimension n. .. . Mk with dimension n into two matrices A and B with dimension nk such that 00 0 1 0 M1 0 0 I 01 BI 0 0 0C B C B 0 M2 ... 35 .. 0 1 Y ?X : : : X and V = B 0 C : B. The proof of the next theorem is from CKa]. 0C C B B .

Consider any element of S 0 other than the generators A0 and B 0. = 0P if we divide C to n n blocks Nij . we get that for S 0 the existence of the zero in the right upper corner is undecidable. Therefore the right upper corner entry of PC 0Q is XMY . S 0 be the semigroup generated by fA0. which can be any element of T . by the proof of Theorem 6. B g.e. A @0 0 0 0 0 where 's represent the unimportant values. C is an element of S . hence the right upper entry of PC 0Q is 1. : : : . This is an obvious corollary of the previous theorem. 00 1 U 1 1 00 1 U 1 1 B B 1C 1C P = B0 0 0 V C and Q = B0 0 0 V C . If we now de ne the matrices Mi to be the matrices of the proof of Theorem 6. in a di erent order.Proof. the elements of the rst block column of Ci1 Ci2 Cim . when the dimension of these matrices is at least 24. Mk g. and T be the semigroup generated by fM1 . B C PC 0Q = B0 0 0 A @0 0 0 0 0 where the right upper corner entry is + UCV . where 1 ij k.2. where P and Q are equal to A0 or B 0 . If C 0 is a power of B 0 . and 0 otherwise. we can write C = B t Ci1 Ci2 Cim . Then 1 00 B 0 C C 0 = B0 0 C C . A @0 A @0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 and C 0 is an element of S 0. As in the proof of Theorem i 3. since it is undecidable for T . then UCV = k=1 XNi1Y . and where 1 i. so the Ni1 's are also. It can be written in the form PC 0Q.1. then C is a power of B and = 1 and UCV = 0. and is 1. the right upper corner entry of M .1. if C 0 is power of B 0. Notice that dimension of A0 and B 0 is nk +3 and. Let C 0 be an element of S 0. and one of them is M = Mi1 Mi2 Mim and the k ? 1 others are zero blocks. i. j k. we may set n = 3 and k = 7. where Cij = B k?ij +1 AB ij ?1. B 0g. Therefore we get that the problem of the zero in the right upper corner is undecidable in two generator semigroups. The product expands to 1 00 + UCV C. Let S be the semigroup generated by fA. Otherwise. The initial B t permutes the lines only. 36 .

de ned by constants u0 = c0.2) The next lemma has an elementary combinatorial proof. To prove this we need certain properties of sequences. It is related to the problem of the zero in the right upper corner in a way that in Skolem's problem we consider semigroups generated by one matrix. 7. which we de ne next. In the proof of the decidability of the Skolem's problem in dimension two we shall use Theorem 7. and the decidability of the Skolem's problem is a corollary of that theorem. (7. Let M be a given matrix from Mn(Z). when n 3.7 Skolem's Problem In this and next chapters we consider the so called Skolem's problem. when the semigroup is generated by two 2 2 matrices. Let and are the roots of the equation y2 + a1 y + a2 = 0: (7. which we give for the sake of completeness. u1 = c1 n=1 and a formula un + a1 un?1 + a2 un?2 = 0. Let (un)1 be an integer sequence. whether there exists in nitely many powers k such that (M k )1n = 0. 37 .1 Skolem's problem in dimension two We are now going to prove that the Skolem's problem is decidable in the case of 2 2 matrices. Problem 6. Determine whether there exist a power k such that (M k )1n = 0? It is not known whether the Skolem's problem is decidable or not. This proof is presented in the second section of this chapter. That theorem gives us also a way to prove the decidability of the mortality problem in the case.1 which suits for deciding the existence of the zero in any entry of the powers of a given 2 2 matrix.1) where ai's are in Q . We shall prove the decidability for case of dimension two in the rst section and the main result of the next chapter is that it is decidable.

where the last equation follows from the fact that and are roots of the equation (7. then by the equalities a + b = c0 and a + b = c1.1) uk+2 = ?a1 uk+1 ? a2uk = ?a1 (a k+1 + b k+1) ? a2 (a k + b k ) = ?a k (a1 + a2 ) ? b k (a1 + a2 ) = a k+2 + b k+1. Assume that claim holds for all n k +1. where q = pn a with a and b in Z and p divides b neither a nor b. and therefore ? 2 = a1 + a2 and ? 2 = a1 + a2 . And if a and b are integers. vp(b)g. since is a root of equation (7. We prove the claim (ii) by induction. Let p be a prime number. We de ne the p-adic valuation vp over Q by vp(0) = 1 and vp(q) = n. namely: n (i) If = . where k 0. if the claim holds. Clearly. then there exists constants c and d such that un = (cn + d) n Proof. If n = 0.1) uk+2 = ?a1 (c(k + 1) + d) k+1 ? a2 (ck + d) k = k (?a1 c(k + 1) ? a1d ? a2 ck ? a2 d) = k (ck(?a1 ? a2) + d(?a1 ? a2) ? a1 c ) = k (ck 2 + d 2 ? (?2 )c ) = (c(k + 2) + d) k+2. 1 the claim holds. Assume that it holds for all n k + 1. Let (un)1=0 be as above. we can prove a stronger result for vp(a + b) as stated in the next lemma. (i): If the claim holds.2). then the claim holds. (ii) If = . It is clear by the de nition of vp that vp(a + b) inf fvp(a). Then by the assumption (7. where k 0.1. (ii): Like in the previous case. then we have that d = c0 and c = (c1 ? c0 )= . 1. Then by the assumption (7.2) and t2 + a1 t + a2 = (t ? )2. 38 a = c1 ? c0 and b = c1 ? c0 : ? ? . when n = 0.Lemma 7. we have un = a n + b n We assume that a and b are as above and prove the claim (i) by induction. Then we have two cases. we have a1 = ?2 . then there exists constants a and b such that 6 for all n in N .

Then it is decidable whether uAnvT = 0 for some n > 0.1.then (xn )n 0 has in nitely many zeros. Assume that vp (a) = n and vp(b) = k. then vp(a + b) = vp(a).e.Cassaigne Cas]. the equation y2 ? ty + d = 0: (7. where vp(a1) = 0 and vp(b1 ) > 1. If vp(a) < A2 = tA ? dI: (7.1. and they are xed by x0 and x1 . Then a + b = pn(a1 + b1 ). then for all n. with n < k. Let a and b be two integers and p a prime number. and if vp(a + b) > n. Now vp(a + b) = n = vp(a). We assume that this is not the case. then (xn)n 0 has exactly c one zero. so we see that Lemma 7.5) If x0 or x1 is zero.vp(b). By Section 2. Consider next the equation (7. Clearly vp(a + b) n. We see that xn is de ned by x0 and x1 . and if t 6= 0 and ? d in N . then (xn)n 0 has in nitely many zeros. Let A be a 2 2 matrix over integers and assume that u and v are integer vectors of dimension 2. then a1 + b1 0 (mod p) and therefore a1 ?b1 0 (mod p). Let t = tr(A) and d = det(A). We divide the proof into three cases: t 1) = 0.2. Now we are ready for the main theorem of this section. Proof. Theorem 7. xn = b n c x1 . If t = 0. i. Then by the case (ii) of Lemma 7.4) We know that the roots of this equation are of the form y = t t22 ?4d . 39 . if n is even. Proof.3) Consider the sequence (xn)n 0 = uAnvT . Otherwise (xn)n 0 has no zeros. and if both of these are zero.3 we know that cA(A) = A2 ? tA + dI = 0. and we have a contradiction.3 we know that the characteristic polynomial of A is cA( ) = 2 ? t + d. By multiplying the equation (7.2) for the sequence xn. then 2 (?d) n x0 . where c and d are in Q . if n is odd: (?d) 2 p ( (7. xn = 0. The proof is modelled after the ideas of J. Now if t = 0. 2) > 0. Otherwise it has no zeros. Let = t2 ? 4d. xn = ( 2 )n(cn + d).3) by uAn from the left and by vT from the right we get xn+2 = txn+1 ? dxn. Also by Section 2.

and it is easy to verify whether xn = 0 for some n. n x0n = t0 x0n1 ? d0x0n?2 = px?1 : n 40 p p . which means that there exist constants c and 2 n0 such that for all n n0 .1 that. xn c d n .If t 6= 0. for some constants a and b. x01 = x1 and for n 2. They can be e ectively computed by the same b proof. it follows by the case (i) of Lemma 7. and by setting t0 = p and d0 = pd2 . then we have case (i) in Lemma 7. i.5). As j j > 1.1. 2 2 2 2 and therefore xn (jaj + jbj)d n O(d n ). Now xn = 0 if and only if ( )n = ? a . We know that d > 0 and we shall 2 prove rst that xn = O(d n ). Since < 0. a bound on n can be found and we are able to check whether (xn)n 0 has a zero or not. we have the case (7. Assume that p is a prime number such that p divides t and p2 divides d. We assume that t 6= 0. v 2 Q g R by the proof of Lemma 7. Q p p t + t2 ? 4d n + b t ? t2 ? 4d n: xn = a 2 2 Now we get that p p t + t2 ? 4d n + b t ? t2 ? 4d n jxnj = a 2 p22 p2 n n a t + t ? 4d + b t ? t ? 4d 2 2 jaj jt + pt2 ? 4djn + jbj jt ? pt2 ? 4djn 2n 2n p p = j2anj jt + i 4d ? t2 jn + j2bnj jt ? i 4d ? t2jn p p n n = j2anj t2 + 4d ? t2 + j2bnj t2 + 4d ? t2 p n p n 2 2 2 = janj 4d + jbnj 4d = jajd n + jbjd n = d n (jaj + jbj). where and (in R ) are the roots of the equation (7. we can de ne an integer sequence (x0n )n 0 such that x00 = x0 . 3) < 0.1. t Then pn?1 divides xn . If t = 0.e. Assume that > .4) and a and b are in = fu + v j u. xn = a n + b n.

if d = t = 3. we get that x13 = 36x1 . w) = 1. vp(dx0 )g 1 and the 2 induction step is vp(xn+1 ) inf fvp(uvxn). we see that d 2 f1. and similarly for n = 1.2 vp(xn+2) = vp(uvxn+1 + uwxn) = vp(xn+1 ): 41 . d) > 0. 2. Also vp(x2 ) inf fvp(tx1 ). u = gcd(t. We can easily verify whether xn+12 = d6xn and t = d. 2. Now. so by Lemma 7. Assume that p is a prime factor of u. which can be veri ed by simple calculations. again by induction. and t = d or t = ?d. and t = uv. Also since vp(w) n1. First. 3g. Now vp(xn+1 ) < vp(xn) + vp(w) = vp(uwxn). d = uw for some integers v and w. it implies that wn divides xn. For example. By the above assumption about prime factors of t and d. If this is not the case. All these cases lead to an equation xn+12 = d6xn. for n = 0 x12 = 3x11 ? 3x10 = 9x10 ? 9x9 ? 3x10 = 6x10 ? 9x9 = 18x9 ? 18x8 ? 9x9 = 9x9 ? 18x8 = 9x8 ? 27x7 = ?27x6 = ?81x5 + 81x4 = ?162x4 + 243x3 = ?243x3 + 486x2 = ?243x2 + 729x1 = 729x0 = 36 x0. Now = (uv)2 ? 4u < 0. we know that u 2 ]wn divides xn .Clearly x0n = 0 if and only if xn = 0 and therefore we may consider the sequence (x0n)n 0 instead of (xn )n 0. and the other cases can be proved similarly. vp(uwxn?1)g 1 + n?1 ] = n+1 ]: 2 2 n] This means that u 2 divides xn for all n 2. and jvj = 1 and u 2 f1. vp(xn+1) ? vp(xn) vp(w). Then. Since d = u. and because d = uw > 0. then for some prime factor p of w and some n. and for all n. then xn+2 = 3xn+1 ? 3xn. as usual. so we get that uv2 < 4. w) = 1. since gcd(u. So we may assume that there is no such prime p that p divides t and p2 divides d. necessarily w = 1. gcd(u. we denote. This implies that xn 6= 0 for all n. We prove the equation by induction. we can prove that vp(xn ) n ]. Assume now that for all prime factors p of w. w) = gcd(v. The induction step is for n 2 x(n+1)+12 = 3xn+12 ? 3x(n?1)+12 = 3 36xn ? 3 36xn?1 = 36(3xn ? 3xn?1) = 36xn+1: This proves the case d = t = 3. Let u be the greatest common divisor of t and d. 3g. vp(xn+1)?vp (xn ) < vp(w). Therefore 2 2 u n ]wn xn = O(d n ).

when the rst pair p and n is found and then the only possibility for the zero in (xn )n 0 is found. Let A and B be elements of Zn n.By induction we prove that vp(xm ) = vp(xn+1 ) < 1 for all m n + 1: Assume that for some m.6) holds for all k. Otherwise B is called linearly independent. 1 + vp(xn+1 )g = vp(xn+1): Clearly the only possible zero is xn where vp(xn+1 ) ? vp(xn ) < vp(w) for the rst time.e. : : : . So we check whether this xn = 0.2 Skolem's problem and the mortality problem We shall now return to the mortality problem. There is no explicit bound for this loop of computation. Set B = fv1. ci 6= 0. We recall that det(AB ) = det(A) det(B ) and that if A is singular. Proof. The loop terminates. we know that the rows and the columns of A are linearly dependent vectors. . but we can compute the values vp(xn+1) ? vp(xn) for all prime factors p of w until p and n are found. We check that one. 1) in Theorem 7. The proof is based on Theorem 7. it terminates always. : : : . and we are done.6) vp(xm+1 ) = vp(uvxm + uwxm?1 ) = inf fvp(xn+1 ). Skolem's problem is decidable for 2 2 matrices over integers. det(A) = 0. since we evaluate this loop for all prime factors p of w at the same time. i. Note that p and n are not known at rst. If we set u = (1.1. We restrict to the case when we are given two 2 2 matrices over integers. m k n + 1 (7.1. (7. Corollary 7. then the product uAnvT equals (An)22. ck such that c1 v1 = c2v2 + c3v3 + 42 + c k vk and at least for one i. 7. First we consider some properties of 2 2 matrices over integers. We shall prove that this case is decidable.1. 0) and v = (0. vk g of vectors from Zn is linearly dependent if the exists integers c1. We have proved that there is a method in all cases of to solve whether there is n 0 such that uAnv = 0.

It is known that A can be presented in the form A= rank(A) X i=1 aT bi. Lemma 7. otherwise we are done. Given two 2 2 matrices over integers. then the claim obviously holds. Then by Lemma 7. Assume that A and B are non-zero. Let A be inZn n. then there exists vectors a and b in Zn such that A = aT b. B g. As we mentioned earlier.e. Note that the rank of a matrix is also the dimension of the vectors space generated by the rows or the columns of the matrix. rank(A). the singular element can occur only as the rst and the last factor. Let A.The number of linearly independent rows in A is called the rank of A and denoted by rank(A). Since AB = aT bcT d = (bcT )aT d and BC = cT deT f = (deT )cT f. Clearly. i. then either AB or BC is zero. If now ABC = 0. in the minimal-length zero product of S . If ABC = 0. then the zero matrix is not in the semigroup S generated by fA. B g. then clearly either bcT or deT is zero. Proof. Proof. i where ai and bi are vectors in Zn for i = 1. It can be proved that the number of linearly independent columns is is also rank(A). : : : .2. Assume that A = aT b. so if A and B are both invertible. if rank(A) = 1.3. so we may assume that this is not the case. has determinant equal to zero. B and C three matrices with rank 1 from Zn n. Assume that either A or B is singular. B = cT d and C = eT f . the claim follows.3. say A and B . det(AB ) = det(A) det(B ) and det(0) = 0. We have two possible cases: 43 . If one of these matrices is zero. It also follows that if the zero is in S . then at least one of these matrices is singular. Theorem 7. It follows that ABC = aT bcT deT f = (bcT )(deT )aT f. where bcT and deT is are integers. it is decidable whether the zero matrix is in the semigroup generated by fA.

0)M k (0. : : : .8) M k = @0 Ak Ak?1vT A 0 0 0 for all integers k 1.8) holds for all k j . for k = 1 (7. : : : . undecidable or unknown. 0. Assume now that (7. Now BAk B = xT yAk xT y = (yAk xT )xT y = 0 if and only if yAk xT = 0. Let A be an element of Zn n. There exists matrix M in Z(n+2) (n+2) such that for all integers k 1 uAk vT = (1.7) Proof. then B can be written in form B = xT y. De ne M as block form 00 uA2 uAvT 1 M = @0 A vT A : 0 0 0 The right hand side of the equation (7. We shall next show that the decidability status of the Skolem's problem is equivalent with the decidability status of the certain instance of the mortality problem. The decidability status of a problem is either decidable.7) clearly is the right upper corner element of M k .4. B 2 and A2 . BA. First. 0. and by Theorem 7. 2) If A is invertible and B is singular.8) is obvious by the de nition. 1)T : (7. We shall prove by induction that 00 uAk+1 uAk vT 1 (7.1) If A and B are both singular. j > 1. u and v be in Zn. 44 .1 this is decidable. then we have to check only the products AB . Lemma 7. where x and y are vectors in Z2. So 00 uAj+1 uAj vT 1 00 uAj+2 uAj+1vT 1 M j+1 = M j M = @0 Aj Aj?1vT A M = @0 Aj+1 Aj vT A : 0 0 0 0 0 0 This proves the lemma.3 and on next lemma. The theorem in this section is based on Lemma 7.

Assume that B is in Mn (B ) and that B = (A). : : : . It follows from the fact that if M is in Mn (N ) . and stop if (B k )1n = 0 or if B k = B h for some h < k. otherwise: We end this chapter with a simple theorem. Theorem 7. Let A be in Mn (N ). By Lemma 7.4. There are 2n2 elements in Mn (B ).Now we are ready for the next theorem. Proof. and by Lemma 7. : : : . Mt and A in Zn n and rank(Mi ) = 1 for all i = 1. B = f0. Proof. t and k 1. 7.4 these are equivalent with the Skolem's problem for matrices with dimension n + 2. we have a simple decidable special case. t. The decidability status of instance I is equivalent with decidability status of Skolem's problem for matrix with dimension n + 2. Clearly (B k )1n = 0 if and only if (Ak )1n. j = 1. : : : . : : : . i. This procedure terminates. Note that the decidability status of instances I of the mortality problem is unknown. We have proved that there is a certain relation between the mortality problem and the Skolem's problem. The products of the second form are actually of the form uAk vT . Assume that A is in Mn(N ) and de ne a mapping : Mn (N ) ! Mn (B ) by (A)ij = 0. since the number of elements in Mn (B ) is nite. where the operations are the usual product and addition of integers except that 1 + 1 = 1. t. Let I be an instance of the mortality problem such that we are given matrices M1 .3. 1. then in M k we are only interested in whether (M k )1n is positive or zero. 45 ( . if Aij = 0.3 Skolem's problem for matrices over natural numbers If we restrict in Skolem's problem to square matrices over natural numbers. 1g. It is decidable whether (Ak )1n = 0 for some k 1. Theorem 7. and we can compute B k for all k.3 in I it is enough to study products Mi Mj and Mi Ak Mj . since rank Mi = 1 for all i = 1. Let B be the boolean semiring.

nonempty alphabet and denote the empty word by .1 Rational series Let X be a nite. v): 46 . w) 6= 0g: The set of formal series over X with coe cients in K is denoted by K hhX ii. w) + (T. Our presentation on rational series follows the book Rational Series and Their Languages by J. w) = (S. w) = X uv=w (S. A formal series (or formal power series) S is a function X ! K: The image of word w under S is denoted by (S. Then their sum is given by (S + T.8 An In nite Number of Zeros in Skolem's Problem In this chapter we will show that it is decidable for a given matrix M from Mn(Z) whether there exist in nitely many k's such that (M k )1n = 0. Berstel and C. The proof uses the theory of rational series so we begin with the basics of these series. Reutenauer BeR]. The image of X under S is denoted by =(S ). the product is the concatenation of two words and with neutral element . Let S and T be two formal series in K hhX ii. Let K be a semiring and X an alphabet. u)(T. w) and is called the coe cient of w in S . 8. The support of S is the language supp(S ) = fw 2 X j (S. w) and their product by (ST. Recall that X is a monoid.

then the series aS and Sa are de ned by (aS. say (Si)i2I is called locally nite. Example 1. if. w) 6= 0. If X = fxg. then (S n. w) = aw . The set of polynomials is denoted by K hX i. then we have the usual sets of formal power series K hhxii = K x]] and of polynomials K x] P A formal series S can also be written in the sum form S = aw w. We also de ne two external operations of K in K hhX ii. xy) = 1. for every word w in X . The sum of this family is denoted by S . that (S. i. since for any word w. w) = a(S. for example. if jwj > n. Then the family (S n)n 0 is locally nite. that is (S.called the 0the 1. zg and consider the formal series in ZhhX ii de ned by S = xy + xxyz + 2zx. there exists only a nite number of indicies i in I such that (Si. ( S = n 1 X n 0 Sn and star of . We note also that K hhX ii is a semiring under these operations.e. (S. 0K otherwise. and the identity element with respect to the sum is the series 0 de ned by (0. w) = 1K if w = . A formal series S in K hhX ii is called proper if the coe cient of the empty word vanishes. and itScan be proved that ne the plus of S . w)a: A formal series with a nite support is called a polynomial. Assume that a is in K and S in K hhX ii. We get. w) = 0. (S. X is a unary alphabet. Let X = fx. where w is in X and aw is the coe cient of w in K . S + = n Clearly S = the equations S = 1 + S + and S + = SS = S S 47 .Note that here the sum is always nite. xx) = 0. Let S be proper formal series. The identity element with respect to the product is the series 1 de ned by (1. i.e. Similarly we de P itSis . y. w) and (Sa. w) = 0K . ) = 0. zx) = 2 and (S. A family of formal series. w) = (S.

into the multiplicative structure of K n n. and rational. if its dimension is minimum among all linear representations of S . and two matrices (or vectors) 2 K n 1 and 2 K 1 n such that for all words w. ) is called a linear representation of S with dimension n. A linear representation of a rational series S is called reduced. (S.1. w) = (w) T : The next theorem is fundamental in the theory of rational series. the product. Note that if we de ne and as vectors in K n. We denote K m n . since ^ (X. A formal series is recognizable if and only if it is rational. The rational operations in K hhX ii are the sum. The series X^ ^ X = Xn = n 0 X w2X w: is also rational.hold for proper formal series. then (S. since it is a polynomial. X is proper. The smallest rationally closed subset of K hhX ii containing a subset E of K hhX ii is called the rational closure of E . . if it is closed under the rational operations. as usual. It was later extented by Schutzenberger Scb] to arbitrary semirings. w) = (w) : The triple ( . ^ ^ Example 2. A formal series is called rational if it is an element of the rational closure of K hX i. The subset of K hhX ii is called rationally closed. Denote by X the formal series Px2X x.e. It was rst proved by Kleene in 1956 for languages that are those series with coe cients in the Boolean semiring. i. the set of the m n matrices over K . 1) = 0. the two external products of K in K hhX ii and the star operation. 48 . it can be de ned using the polynomials K hX i and the rational operations. Theorem 8. and a morphism of monoids : X ! K n n. A formal series S 2 K hhX ii is called recognizable if there exists an integer n 1.

we get an+k + c1an+k?1 + + ck an = 0: (8. . P for n 0. There are also other ways to de ne regular series. We denote the formal series S over X by X X S = anxn = anxn : n 0 A rational series is called regular. . ) such that (x) is an invertible matrix. ). These h rst elements are called the starting conditions. Assume that K = Z and that S is a rational series in Z x]] having a linear representation ( .The proof by Schutzenberger uses some properties of K -modules and it is quite long. It can be proved that for a regular series S . and omitted here. ) has invertible (x). and moreover that the characteristic polynomial of the matrix (x) in Zk k is c( ). ). if it has a linear representations ( . 49 . ah?1 of the series S . satis ed by rational series S = anxn in Z x]] is called a linear recurrence relation. . any reduced linear representation ( . By the Cayley{Hamilton theorem we know that c( (x)) = (xk ) + c1 (xk?1) + + ck I = 0: If we multiply this equation from the left by (xn ) (n 2 N ) and from the right by . a1. every an for n h can be computed if we know the elements a0 . if h 6= 0. Note that having a linear recurrence relation. . From now on we shall x the alphabet to be X = fxg.1) The equation an+h + 1an+h?1 + + han = 0. Then c( ) = (?1)k ( k + c1 k?1 + + ck ). A linear recurrence relation is called proper. : : : . Next lemma gives a method to calculate a regular linear representation from a proper linear recurrence relation. It is clear by the de nition of recognizable series that we can transform our problem of matrices into rational series quite nicely. where ci's are in Z and k is the dimension of the linear representation ( .

i + 50 . Now 1 1(xj ) gives the rst row of matrix 1(xj ). . : : : . A A @ ah?1 h :::::::::::: 1 The matrix 1(x) is called the companion matrix. we calculate the characteristic polynomial of 1(x) to get a linear recurrence relation. It is easy to see that det( 1(x)) = h 6= 0. where repsesents a permutation of the set f1.3: det((Aij )n n) = X sign(j1 . then it is has a regular linear representation ( 1 . . .. j2. where the last equality follows from the de nition of the determinant in Section 2. ng. 1 (x) = B . . . C 1 = (1. . we use the method mentioned before the lemma.. If rational series S 2 Z x]] satis es a proper linear recurrence an+h ? 1 an+h?1 ? ? han = 0 be a proper linear recurrence relation of S and assume that aj 's. . . det( 1(x) ? I ) = . if 0 j h ? 1..1. To prove that an = 1 (xn ) 1 for all n 0. .. i ? 1. 0 ? 1 :::::::::::: 1 ? h = h X i=1 (?1)i?1 i(? )h?i + (? )h. : : : . 1 ). then the rst row of 1(xj ) has 1 in the j 'th entry and all the others are 0. Let 00 1 0 : 01 0 1 C B0 0 1 B a0 C B . .e. 1 = B . . . . . : : : . : : : ..e. Proof. . So we calculate ? 1 0 0 0 ? 1 0 .. Therefore 1 1(xj ) 1 = aj . 0. 0 j < h. . i. and from the fact that only permutations with non-zero product are of the form (1. . . are the starting conditions. a linear representation satisfying det( 1 (x)) 6= 0. 1. If 0 j h ? 1. C : B 0 :::::::::::: 1C @ . . . C . 0C B a1 C B.relation. jn)A1j1 A2j2 Anjn . . . ... i. Let Lemma 8. 0). .

51 . Theorem 8. h ? 1) and from the element 1 ? in the product. His rst step was to prove the claim for regular rational series with coe cients in Z. These permutations have i ? 1 inversions. k2. Then the set fn 2 N j an = 0g is a union of a nite set and of a nite number of arithmetic progressions. : : : . 1 i rg: The integer N is called a period of A. also BeR]. kr 2 f0. Let S = P anxn be a rational series with coe cients in Z. The last term (? )h follows from the permutation (h. A quasiperiodic set of period N is a subset of N that is a union of a nite set and a purely periodic set of period N. if there exists a natural number N and integers k1. Hansel in Han]. Note that one way to de ne the regular rational series is to use the fact that they satisfy a proper linear recurrence relation. N ? 1g such that A = fki + nN j n 2 N . : : : . 1. : : : . The proof we give here is based on the proof by G.1.2 Skolem's theorem In this section we prove an important theorem concerning the zeros in rational series over fxg with coe cients in Z. Hansel proved the theorem for rational series with coe cients in the elds of characteristic 0. and then present a proof for all rational series with coe cients in Z. : : : . cf. 1. h. Therefore they are equal. 1. 1 ) satis es the same linear recurrence relation than S . We use that proof up to that point. The proof requires several de nitions and lemmas. and the signs of these permutations are (?1)i?1. i). A set A of natural numbers is called purely periodic.2. ? ? h): 8. namely a theorem proved by Skolem in 1934. Now det( 1(x) ? I ) = (?1)h = (?1)h( h X i=1 (?1)i?1?i 1 h?1 ? i h?1 + h Thus the rational series with linear representation ( 1.

then n vp p ! n p ? 2 : n p?1 Proof. n are dividable by p. and it is called the annihilator of S . which we shall use later. The intersection of a family of quasiperiodic sets of period N Proof. Assume that S = anxn is a rational series.3. Recall rst that P vp(q1 and qn ) = n X i=1 vp(qi ) vp(q1 + where qi's are in Q . N ? 1g and for all i in I . all having period N . Lemma 8. since bn=pc of the numbers 1. we have that Lemma 8. If p is a prime number and n a natural number. are dividable by p2 and so on. Clearly the same holds for (j + nN ) \ (\i2I Ai ) and therefore the intersection \Ai is quasiperiodic. Clearly the annihilator is the complement of the support de ned in the previous section. vp(qn)g.2. Let (Ai )i2I be a family of quasiperiodic sets. bn=p2c vp(n!) bn=pc + bn=p2c + : : : + bn=pk c + : : : n=p + n=p2 + : : : + n=pk + : : : n=(p ? 1): Therefore. Let vp be the p-adic valuation de ned in the previous chapter. : : : . the set (j + nN ) \ Ai is either nite or equal to (j + nN ).is a quasiperiodic set of period N . + qn ) inf fvp(q1 ). : : : . For all j 2 f0. 1. First. n n p?2 vp p ! = n ? vp(n!) n ? p ? 1 = n p ? 1 : n 52 . : : : . Our next Lemma states an inequality. We denote the set fn 2 N j an = 0g by ann(S ).

for any given k in N . then vp(aj ) !j+1(P ) !k+1(P ). Assume that Q(x) = a0 + a1 x + : : : + anxn . for 0 j n ? 1. and bn+1 = an. Then for all k 2 N !k+1(P ) !k (Q): Proof. : : : . Thus. !k (Q) !k+1(P ): 53 . P (x) = b0 + b1 x + : : : + bn+1xn+1 : Then bj+1 = aj ? taj+1. : : : . For any integer k 0. and consequently. n aj = bj+1 + tbj+2 + + tn?j bn+1 : It follows that vp(aj ) !j+1(P ) for any j in N . if j k.4.2) Lemma 8. Let P and Q be two polynomials with rational coe cients such that P (x) = (x ? t)Q(x) for some t 2 Z. vp(antn)g for any integer t.Consider next an arbitrary polynomial P (x) = a0 + a1 x + : : : + anxn in Q x]. vp(a1 t). !0(P ) !1(P ) : : : !k (P ) : : : and for k > n. and therefore for j = 0. and therefore vp(P (t)) !0(P ): (8. !k (P ) = 1: Note also that vp(P (t)) inf fvp(a0 ). let !k (P ) = inf fvp(aj ) j j kg: Clearly.

sequence de ned by Lemma 8. it follows that bt = Rt(t) = Rn(t) for n t: Next. i.5.Our next corollary is a straightforward extension of the previous lemma. n 0. Proof. bn = 0 for all n in N .3) p?2 !k (Rn) k p ? 1 : 54 . and assume that t1 .1. For n in N . (8. : : : . Let (dn)n2N be any sequence of integers and let (bn)n2N be the bn = n X n i i p di i=0 where p is an odd prime number. If bn = 0 for in nitely many indices n. (x ? tk )Q(x): The main argument in our proof of Skolem's theorem is the following lemma. t2 . tk are in Z and let P (x) = (x ? t1 )(x ? t2 ) Then !k (P ) !0 (Q). we show that for all k. let Rn(x) = Then for t in N . then the sequence bn vanishes. Corollary 8. n X i=0 n n X dipi x(x ? 1) i!(x ? i + 1) : i=0 n (t ? i + 1) = X d pi t! i i! i!(t ? i)! i=0 Rn (t) = = and since dipi t(t ? 1) ?t i X t i i p di i=0 = 0 for i > t.e. Let Q be a polynomial with rational coe cients.

and let n maxft.e k k+1 n c(kn) = ak dk p ! + ak+1dk+1 (kp+ 1)! + + andn p ! . i vp(c(kn) ) k inf n vp di p! .1 we know that !k (Rn) !0(Q). For this. Clearly each c(kn) is a linear comi bination. By Corollary 8. This proves the claim. k.3 implies that p?1 p?2 vp(c(kn)) k inf n i p ? 1 k p ? 2 .4) Consider now any coe cient bt of the sequence (bn )n2N . k n where aj 's are integers. i. By equation (8.3). with integer coe cients. Therefore P Rn(x) = (x ? t1)(x ? t2 ) (x ? tk )Q(x) for some polynomial Q(x) with integer coe cients. for indices i with k i n. We shall see that. Rn(ti ) = bti = 0 for i = 1. which means that bt = 0. i i and so Lemma 8. by equation (8. and by the equation (8. : : : .3). i which in turn shows that p?2 !k (Rn(x)) k p ? 1 : (8. Consequently. p?2 vp(bt ) k p ? 1 . of the numbers di pi!i . 55 . for any integer k.For this we write Rn(x) = n=0 c(in) xk .4) that p?2 vp(bt ) k p ? 1 for all k 0. Now vp(Rn(t)) vp(Q(t)). So we get vp(Rn(t)) vp(Q(t)) !0(Q) !k (Rn): Finally.2). and therefore it follows from equation (8. vp(bt ) = vp(Rn(t)). let t1 < t2 < < tk be the rst k indices with bt1 = = btk = 0. vp(Q(t)) !0(Q). tk g.

i=0 (I + pM )n n n X n i i X n i I n?i = = i pM : i (pM ) i=0 i=0 56 . such that i j (x) = (x) . i. p ? 1g and n n (mod p).2 for regular rational series with coe cients in Z. there exists a matrix M with integer coe cients such that (xN ) = I + pM: Consider a xed integer j 2 f0. . Now there are pk2 di erent elements in Mk (Zp). the annihilator ann(S ) is quasiperiodic of period at most pk2 . 1. p ? 1g is the ring. and it can be calculated from the inverse matrix of (x) in Mk (Q ) by mapping every element to Zp. for a prime p. it follows that there exists an integer N . the matrix (x) has the inverse matrix in Mk (Zp).5) bn = since (xj+nN ) = (xj )(I + pM )n n X n i j i = i p (x )M . such that (xN ) = I: This means that for the original matrix (x). and de ne series bn = aj+nN . n is in f0. every element a of Zp has an inverse element a?1 in Zp such that a a?1 = 1. Then (8. Recall that. where the usual operations of the semiring Z are done modulo p. Zp = f0. Let p be an odd prime not dividing det( (x)).e. 1. Since det( (x)) = det( (x)) 6= 0. : : : . Since (x)2 has an inverse matrix. Let n 7! n be the canonical morphism from Z to Zp.We shall rst prove Theorem 8. Proof. 1. ) be a linear representation of S of minimal dimension k with integer coe cients. Let S = P anxn in Z x]] be a regular rational series and let ( . : : : . 0 N pk . N ? 1g. since it is a semiring and furthermore. therefore there exist some i and j in N . i 6= j . For any odd prime p not dividing det( (x)).6. where n 0. Lemma 8. : : : . Zp is a ring.

where ann(T ) + (k ? m) denotes the addition of (k ? m) to all elements of ann(T ). eh?1 = ak?1: Now T has a linear representation ( 1 . and so by Lemma 8. P 57 .2. c( ) = (?1)k ( k + c1 k?1 + + ck ): As mentioned in the previous section.By setting di = (xj )M i . Let ( . Therefore ann(S ) is quasiperiodic. we obtain bn = n X n i i p di : i=0 Now by Lemma 8. but since ann(S ) = fi j 0 i < k ? m. is a linear recurrence relation satis ed by S . The annihilator of S is not necessarily quasiperiodic. the sequence bn either vanishes or contains only nitely many vanishing terms. the equation an+k + c1an+k?1 + + ck an = 0. ann(S ) is quasiperiodic.6) in the form an+k + c1 an+k?1 + + cm an+k?m = 0. .6.6. If det( (x)) 6= 0. 1) of Lemma 8. necessarily ck = 0. by de nition of the characteristic polynomial. the annihilator of S is clearly a union of a nite set and of a nite number of arithmetic progressions. Proof of Theorem 8. Since c(0) = det( (x)). Let T = enxn be the rational series de ned by the (proper) linear recurrence relation en+h + c1en+h?1 + + cmen = 0. (8. So we can assume that det( (x)) = 0. ai = 0g (ann(T ) + (k ? m)). P where 0 m < k and cm 6= 0. ) be a linear representation of S = anxn in Z x]]. ann(T ) is quasiperiodic.5) of series bn . Let c( ) be the characteristic polynomial of (x). Thus the annihilator of S is a union of nite and purely periodic sets by de nition (8.6) where n 0. for n 0. e1 = ak?m+1.5. : : : . 1. and let the starting conditions be e0 = ak?m. and det( 1 ) = cm and T is regular. and we may write equation (8.1. by Lemma 8.

: : : . The last extension to rational series with coe cients in a eld of characteristic 0 is referred to as Skolem{Mahler{Lech theorem. From the proof of Skolem's theorem we obtain a corollary for the rational series over rational numbers. but not short.3 Decidability of the in nite number of zeros We end this chapter with a theorem the proof of which is based on the constructive ideas in previous section. and therefore ann(S ) = ann(S 0 ). and let q be the common multiple of the denominators of coe cients in . and by Lech to elds of characteristic 0. We construct a rational series S = ak xk . (x) = M and 58 = (0. were much more di cult using p-adic analysis. Given a square matrix M in Mn (Z). : : : . coe cients in Z. and . P = (1. fn 2 N j an = 0g is a union of a nite set and of a nite number of arithmetic progressions. 0) 2 Z1 n. 0. . ). Let S = P anxn be a rational series with coe cients in Q . 8. . as we saw. Now S P As mentioned earlier the idea of the proof in this section is due to G. it is decidable whether Proof. Clearly this has an linear representation ( . Then (q .e. Let ( .2. This is very nice from our point of view. ) be a linear representation of S = anxn 2 Q x]]. 1)T 2 Zn 1: .Then the set Corollary 8. The proofs in this section were also constructive. where there exists an in nite number of natural numbers k such that (M k )1n = 0. where ak = (M k )1n . is elementary. M k has zero in the right upper corner. Theorem 8.3. i. q . Hansel. 0. Proof. Skolem's original proof and its extensions by Mahler to rational series with coe cients in algebraic number elds. This proof. since we are looking for an algorithm to decide whether square a matrix M has in nitely many powers k such that (M k )1n = 0. q ) is P linear representation of rational series S 0 with a 0 = q n+2 an xn .

) is regular. and we then divide the rational series considered into series (bn)n 0. So we can compute linear recurrence relations satis ed by these series from the characteristic polynomials of their linear representations. and from the proof we also get linear representations satis ed by these series.5. and we can use the proof of Lemma 8. 59 . We obtain N series.First we decide whether (x) is invertible or not. whether the linear representation ( . i. otherwise none. If not. we consider the regular rational series T de ned in the proof of Skolem's theorem. Now we have a regular series to consider. By this proof we can compute the period N . If some of these series vanish then there is in nitely many n such that (M k )1n = 0. .e. Finally we know that these series (bn)n 0 either vanish or have only nitely many nonzero elements.

where matrices are over integers.9 Summary We have considered many simply formulated problems in matrix theory. We have also seen that the Post Correspondence Problem is very useful in the proofs of the undecidability results in the matrix theory. Decidable Undecidable 60 . Actually all undecidability results were based on the undecidability of PCP. (n. 2) Common element ( 3. 18) Finiteness (n. were such. We shall now present the results proved in this work in the form of a table. Problem Mortality (2. 1) ( 3. We used combinatorics. 7) Table: Summary of decidable and undecidable matrix problems. We also notice that the proofs for the decidable cases are complicated. a method that was rst used by Paterson. We restrict to the cases. ( 24. where n 3. For instance. 1) ( 3. k) Zero in the right upper corner ( 2. Some of them are proved to be decidable and some undecidable. coding of two independent words to matrices. 7). Numbers n and k in the table present arbitrary values of these parameters and Skolem's problem is included in the problem of the zero in the right upper corner. k). The entries are vectors of two parameters (n. but many problems are also left open. 2). 2) Freeness (n. the freeness and the mortality problem for 2 2 matrices and Skolem's problem for n n matrices. ( 45. 1) ( 3. graph theory and theory of rational series in these proofs. where n is the dimension of matrices and k the number of matrices. 15). They also used the same method. and need some backround from other branches of mathematics.

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tucs. University of Turku Department of Mathematical Sciences Abo Akademi University Department of Computer Science Institute for Advanced Management Systems Research Turku School of Economics and Business Administration Institute of Information Systems Science .Turku Centre for Computer Science Lemminkaisenkatu 14 FIN-20520 Turku Finland http://www.abo.

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