I find this structure to be useful in my work, but I cannot find any name for it. I think it might be a "commutative division semiring" but I'm not certain because I cannot find any literature on it.

Basically, I'm looking for a name of some set $S$ where $S$ forms a commutative monoid under addition, the nonzero elements of $S$ an abelian group under multiplication, and the distributive law holds. An example is the set $\{False,True\}$ with logical OR as addition and logical AND as multiplication.


2 Answers 2


I think you are looking for semifields in this sense:

In ring theory, combinatorics, functional analysis, and theoretical computer science (MSC 16Y60), a semifield is a semiring (S,+,·) in which all elements have a multiplicative inverse.

However, I think the passage I copied contains an error when it says all elements. If you look at the references you'll find that they do exclude $0$.

You'll also find, in Golan's book at least, the name "division semiring" used if commutativity of multiplication is required.

The two most useful resources on semirings that I ever found were these:

Golan, Jonathan S. Semirings and their Applications. Springer Science & Business Media, 2013.


Gondran, Michel, and Michel Minoux. Graphs, dioids and semirings: new models and algorithms. Vol. 41. Springer Science & Business Media, 2008.

I have never read this but it looks like something to consult:

Glazek, Kazimierz. A guide to the literature on semirings and their applications in mathematics and information sciences: with complete bibliography. Springer Science & Business Media, 2002.

  • $\begingroup$ The Wiki article isn't perfect, but you get the drift. $\endgroup$
    – rschwieb
    Dec 6, 2018 at 14:32
  • $\begingroup$ I'll take a look into Golan's book. But it would be the definition you gave for division semiring with an identity, so it is a monoid aditively, instead of just a semiring. $\endgroup$
    – Garmekain
    Dec 6, 2018 at 15:50
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Garmekain I'm pretty sure the tendency is to define semirings on abelian monoids not just semigroups. I think the first two references above require that, anyhow. $\endgroup$
    – rschwieb
    Dec 6, 2018 at 16:15

For the example you gave, there is a name for that special semiring, and it is called the two-element boolean algebra or boolean semiring.


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