Double Pushout (DPO) rewriting, the dominant model for graph rewriting, emerged in the early 70’s, strongly influenced at that time by graph grammars. Developed by Hartmut Ehrig and his many collaborators, graph rewriting was from the beginning based on category theory, with the major insight that the two basic rewriting constructions, namely matching and replacement, were intimately related to graph morphisms and their pushouts. A new model has emerged recently, so-called Composition based rewriting (Core), in which rewriting is based on a composition operator over directed rooted labelled graphs (drags), so that matching a drag G against a drag L amounts to compose L with some context drag C, and rewriting G with L -> R to compose R with C. We will describe Core for drags before to relate it precisely to DPO and extend it to adhesive categories of graphs and beyond. We will also show how to define composition abstractly in any category of graphs satisfying appropriate properties among which adhesivity (wrt monomorphisms). Major differences between DPO and Core will be discussed.
(Joint work with Nachum Dershowitz and Fernando Orejas)