Enhancing Functionality

Enhancing Core Functionality

On this page, some techniques to enhance the functionality of the toolkit are described. First, the target tags concept is outlined, which is needed in order to add new gate types. Afterwards, the use of cost functions is described.

Target Tags

A revkit::gate is a data structure, which handles the organization of control lines, target lines, and target tags. This means, there are no further specializations of different gate types, e.g. a Toffoli gate. Gate types are assigned by so called tags. Some tags for common gate types are predefined, but using the tags, it is very easy to define new gate types, e.g. for quantum computing.

Tags are implemented as empty C++ struct datatypes, but there are many functions which encapsulate the manual usage of the revkit::gate class.

As an example, the following code demonstrates how to add a Toffoli gate to an existing revkit::circuit circ. (Note: This examples show how to do this manually. This is not the recommended way to do this, but illustrates the concept.)

Using the functions in add_gates.hpp, adding a Toffoli can be done using one function.

#include <core/circuit.hpp>
#include <core/add_gates.hpp>
revkit::append_toffoli( circ )( 0, 1 )( 2 );

To check whether a gate is of a certain type, the functions revkit::is_toffoli, revkit::is_fredkin, revkit::is_peres, revkit::is_v, and revkit::is_vplus can be used, respectively. The following code snippet checks, whether the first gate of a revkit::circuit circ is a Toffoli gate.

if ( revkit::is_toffoli( circ[0] ) ) { ... }

Adding Own Target Tags

To create own gates (e.g. a Hadamard gate), one C++ struct and two functions have to be implemented. The following file is called hadamard.hpp:

// hadamard.hpp
#include <core/gate.hpp>
namespace revkit
struct hadamard_tag {};
bool is_hadamard( const gate& g )
return is_type<hadamard_tag>( g.type() );

Having this new gate tag, affected functions (e.g. simulation) have to be accordingly extended with the respective functionality.

Cost Functions

A generic cost function is implemented in the function revkit::costs. As parameters it gets a circuit, for which the costs should be measured and a reference to a cost_function instance. RevKit distinguishes thereby between a costs_by_circuit_func instance, where costs are measured globally on the base of the whole circuit, and a costs_by_gate_func instance, where costs are measured locally for each gate and then added. Several cost functions are already available in the core library, namely


To decouple the algorithms from each other, functors are used. As a motivation, the SWOP synthesis algorithm is given. SWOP uses an arbitrary synthesis function and permutes the outputs of the specification in order to determine a cheaper circuit realization.

Thus, as a parameter for the SWOP algorithm a generic synthesis method has to be specified. This represents all synthesis algorithms and has to be concretized not before the execution of the program. Furthermore, the SWOP algorithm also compiles even if there is no synthesis algorithm available. This make the RevKit toolkit quite modular and easy extenable. As parameter a functor is used, in this case truth_table_synthesis_func. This functor is defined in algorithms/synthesis/synthesis.hpp. All corresponding synthesis algorithms provide a function algorithm_func where algorithm is the name of the algorithm. In the following example, a synthesis functor is assigned with the revkit::transformation_based_synthesis "transformation_based_synthesis" algorithm. In order to provide completeness, the functor is checked to be specified first (in this case the check evaluates always to true).

#include <core/circuit.hpp>
using namespace revkit;
int main( int argc, char ** argv )
circuit circ;
// obtain spec
if ( func )
func( circ, spec );
return 0;

The use of functors is especially useful in algorithm settings structs. A detailed example is given in the Window Optimization Tutorial.

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