Overview of Unary Operators of C# (C Sharp)

You might have used binary operators frequently in your code. Binary operators operate on two operands and give the result. But C# also provides a set of operators which work only on a single operand. Such operators are termed as Unary operators. This article will focus on different unary operators provided by C#.




C# provides six unary operators. They are listed below:

• Unary +
• Unary –
• Increment Operator ++
• Decrement Operator --
• Logical Negation Operator !
• Bitwise Complement Operator ~

Each of these operators is discussed with relevant examples in rest of the article.

Unary +: Unary + operator are used only in logical sense. They do not perform any operation on the operand. You generally represent a negative number using – sign. Similarly unary + is used to represent a positive number. Even if you use this operator along with an operand having negative value, it doesn’t make any difference in the operand’s value. Since you have a unary – operator, you have unary + operator as its complement. Here is an example using unary + operator:

class sampleClass {
public static void Main() {
int positiveInteger = +10;
int negativeInteger = -10;
negativeInteger = +negativeInteger;
Console.WriteLine(“ The negativeInteger value is :” + negativeInteger);
}
}

Output of this code will be:

The negativeInteger value is : -10

Note that the value of negativeInteger is still -10. Unary + operator didn’t have any impact on it.

Unary –: Unary – operator is used to represent a negative value as shown in the example below. When you apply – operator on an operand with negative value, the value becomes positive. This is demonstrated in the example below:

class sampleClass {
public static void Main() {
int positiveInteger = 10;
int negativeInteger = -10;
positiveInteger = -positiveInteger;
negativeInteger = - negativeInteger;
Console.WriteLine(“positiveInteger = {0}, negativeInteger = {1}”, positiveInteger ,
negativeInteger);
}
}

Output of this code will be:

positiveInteger = -10 negativeInteger = 10

Note that the positiveInteger has negative value and negativeInteger has positive value when operated upon by unary – operator.

Increment Operator ++: Increment operator is used to increment the operand’s value by 1. The increment statement can be assigned to another variable. There are two forms of usage of increment operator:

• Pre-Increment: The operand will be incremented and the incremented value is assigned to the variable. Hence the operand and the assigned variable have the same value.
• Post-Increment: The operand value will be assigned to the variable and the operand is then incremented. In this case, operand value will be greater than the assigned variable value.

Both pre-increment and post-increment of increment operator ++ is demonstrated below:

class sampleClass {
int sampleVar1 = 10;
int sampleVar2 = 10;
int sampleVar3 = ++sampleVar1; //Pre-Increment
int sampleVar4 = sampleVar2++; //Post-Increment
Console.WriteLine(“Pre-Increment: sampleVar1 = {0}, sampleVar3 = {1}”, sampleVar1,
sampleVar3);
Console.WriteLine(“Post-Increment: sampleVar2 = {0}, sampleVar4 = {1}”, sampleVar2,
sampleVar4);
}

Output of this code will be:

Pre-Increment: sampleVar1 = 11, sampleVar3 = 11
Post-Increment: sampleVar2 = 11, sampleVar4 = 10

Decrement Operator --: Decrement operator is used to decrement the operand’s value by 1. Similar to increment operator, decrement operator can also be used in two different ways:
• Pre-Decrement: The operand will be decremented and then assigned
• Post-Decrement: The operand will be assigned first and then decremented

This is demonstrated in the example below:

class sampleClass {
int sampleVar1 = 10;
int sampleVar2 = 10;
int sampleVar3 = - -sampleVar1; //Pre-Decrement
int sampleVar4 = sampleVar2- -; //Post-Decrement
Console.WriteLine(“Pre-Decrement: sampleVar1 = {0}, sampleVar3 = {1}”, sampleVar1,
sampleVar3);
Console.WriteLine(“Post-Decrement: sampleVar2 = {0}, sampleVar4 = {1}”, sampleVar2,
sampleVar4);
}

Output of this code will be:

Pre-Decrement: sampleVar1 = 9, sampleVar3 = 9
Post-Decrement: sampleVar2 = 9, sampleVar4 = 10

Logical Negation Operator !: This operator is used to negate the Boolean value. If the Boolean value is true then using ! on that Boolean value will result in false. Normally this operator is used in conditional checks. Here is an example to demonstrate this operator:
class sampleClass {
public static void Main() {
bool value1 = true;
bool value2 = !value1;
Console.WriteLine(“value1 = “ + value1 + “ value2 = “ + value2);
}
}

Output of this code will be:

value1 = true value2 = false

Bitwise Complement Operator ~: Any number you specify will be internally converted into binary number containing bits. If you want to complement or invert each of the bit in a binary digit, then you can do it using bitwise complement operator ~. Consider the following example:
class sampleClass {
public static void Main() {
byte value1 = 15;
byte value2 = ~value1;
Console.WriteLine(“value1 = “ + value1 + “ value2 = “ + value2);
}
}

Output of this code will be:

value1 = 15 value2=240

How did you arrive at this output? Binary equivalent of 15 is 00001111. When you use ~, it becomes 11110000 which is equivalent to 240.

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