We address questions of logic and expressibility in the context of random rooted trees. Infiniteness of a rooted tree is not expressible as a first order sentence, but is expressible as an existential monadic second order sentence (EMSO). On the other hand, finiteness is not expressible as an EMSO. For a broad class of random tree models, including Galton–Watson trees with offspring distributions that have full support, we prove the stronger statement that finiteness does not agree up to a null set with any EMSO. We construct a finite tree and a non-null set of infinite trees that cannot be distinguished from each other by any EMSO of given parameters. This is proved via set-pebble Ehrenfeucht games (where an initial colouring round is followed by a given number of pebble rounds).
- Almost sure expressibility
- Existential monadic second order properties
- Finiteness of tree
- Galton–Watson tree
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Theoretical Computer Science
- Discrete Mathematics and Combinatorics