In this reading, you will learn about additional operators, operator precedence and operator associativity. I'll also provide you with some examples of logical operators.
1. Additional operators
- Logical AND operator: &&
- Logical OR operator: ||
- Logical NOT operator: !
- The modulus operator: %
- The equality operator: ==
- The strict equality operator: ===
- The inequality operator: !=
- The strict inequality operator: !==
- The addition assignment operator: +=
- The concatenation assignment operator: += (it's the same as the previous one - more on that later)
The logical AND operator is, for example, used to confirm if multiple comparisons will return true.
Let's say you're tasked with coming up with some code that will check if the currentTime variable is between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. The code needs to console.log true if currentTime > 9 and if currentTime < 17.
Here's a solution:
var currentTime = 10; console.log(currentTime > 9 && currentTime < 17);
How does this code work?
First, on line one, I set the currentTime variable, and assign the value of 10 to it.
Next, on line two I console log two comparisons:
currentTime > 9
currentTime < 17
I also use the && logical operator to join the two comparisons.
Effectively, my code is interpretted as the following:
console.log(10 > 9 && 10 < 17);
The comparison of 10 > 9 will return true.
Also, the comparison of 10 < 17 will return true.
This means I can further re-write the line two of my solution as follows:
console.log(true && true);
In essence, this is how my code works.
Now, the question is, what will be the result of console.log(true && true)?
To understand the answer, you need to know the behavior of the && logical operator.
The && logical operator returns a single value: the boolean true or false, based on the following rules:
- It returns true if both the values on its right and on its left are evaluated to true
- It returns false in all the other instances
In other words:
console.log(true && true) will output: true
console.log(true && false) will output: false
console.log(false && true) will output: false
console.log(false && false) will output: false
It is used when you want to check if at least one of the given comparisons evaluates to true.
Here's a solution:
var currentTime = 7; console.log(currentTime < 9 || currentTime > 17);
In line one of the code I assign the number 7 to the variable currentTime.
On line two, I console log the result of checking if either currentTime < 9 or currentTime > 17 will evaluate to true.
It's the same as this:
var currentTime = 7; console.log(true || false);
Here are the rules of how the || operator evaluates given values:
console.log(true || true) will output: true
console.log(true || false) will output: true
console.log(false || true) will output: true
console.log(false || false) will output: false
The logical OR operator will always return true, except when both sides evaluate to false. In other words, for the logical OR operator to return false, the results of both comparisons must return false.
Going back to the example of checking if either currentTime < 9 or currentTime > 17, this makes sense: the only time you will get false is when the value stored in the currentTime variable is greater than 9 and less then 17.
The logical NOT operator: !
You can think of the ! operator as a switch, which flips the evaluated boolean value from true to false and from false to true.
For example if I assign the boolean value of true to the petHungry variable:
var petHungry = true;
...then I can console log the fact that the pet is no longer hungry by using the ! operator to flip the boolean value stored inside of the petHungry variable, like so:
console.log('Feeding the pet');
console.log("Pet is hungry: ", !petHungry);
This is the output of the above code:
Pet is hungry: true Feeding the pet Pet is hungry: false true
The reason for the changed output in the console is because you have flipped the value stored inside the petHungry variable, from true to false.
Notice, however, that the code on line five of the example above still outputs true - that's due to the fact that I didn't reassign the value of the petHungry variable.
Here's how I could permanently change the value stored in the petHungry variable from true to false:
var petHungry = true; petHungry = !petHungry;
In this example, I first assign the value of true to the new variable of petHungry. Then, on line two, I assign the opposite value, the !true - read: not true - to the existing petHungry variable.
The modulus operator: %
To demonstrate how it works, imagine that a small restaurant that has 4 chairs per table, and a total of 5 tables, suddenly receives 22 guests.
How many guests will not be able to sit down in the restaurant?
You can use the modulus operator to solve this.
console.log(22 % 5); // 2
The output is 2, meaning, when I divide 22 and 5, I get a 4, and the remainder is 2, meaning, there are 2 people who couldn't get a place in this restaurant.
The equality operator, ==
The equality operator checks if two values are equal.
For example, this comparison returns true: 5 == 5. Indeed, it is true that 5 is equal to 5.
Here's an example of the equality operator returning false: 5 == 6. Indeed, it is true that 5 is not equal to 6.
Additionally, even if one of the compared values is of the number type, and the other is of the string type, the returned value is still true: 5 == "5".
This means that the equality operator compares only the values, but not the types.
The strict equality operator, ===
The strict equality operator compares for both the values and the data types.
With the strict equality operator, comparing 5 === 5 still returns true. The values on each side of the strict equality operator have the same value and the same type. However, comparing 5 == "5" now returns false, because the values are equal, but the data type is different.
The inequality operator, !=
The inequality operator checks if two values are not the same, but it does not check against the difference in types.
For example, 5 != "5" returns false, because it's false to claim that the number 5 is not equal to number 5, even though this other number is of the string data type.
The strict inequality operator !==
For the strict inequality operator to return false, the compared values have to have the same value and the same data type.
For example, 5 !== 5 returns false because it is false to say that the number 5 is not of the same value and data type and another number 5.
However, comparing the number 5 and the string 5, using the strict inequality operator, returns true.
console.log(5 !== "5")
2. Using the + operators on strings and numbers
Combining two strings using the + operator
The + operator, when used with number data type, adds those values together.
However, the + operator is also used to join string data type together.
"inter" + "net" // "internet" "note" + "book" // "notebook"
If the + operator is used to join strings, then it is referred to as the concatenation operator, and you'll say that it's used to concatenate strings.
When used with numbers, the + operator is the addition operator, and when used with strings, the + operator is the concatenation operator.
Combining strings and numbers using the + operator
But what happens when one combines a string and a number using the + operator?
Here's an example:
365 + " days" // "365 days" 12 + " months" // "12 months"
The process of coercion can sometimes be a bit unexpected.
Consider the following example:
1 + "2"
What will be the result of 1 + "2"?
The addition assignment operator, +=
The addition assignment operator is used when one wants to accumulate the values stored in a variable.
Here's an example: You are counting the number of overtime hours worked in a week.
You don't have to specify the type of work, you just want to count total hours.
You might code a program to track it, like this:
var mon = 1; var tue = 2; var wed = 1; var thu = 2; var fri = 3; console.log(mon + tue + wed + thu + fri); // 9
You can simplify the above code by using the addition assignment operator, as follows:
var overtime = 1; overtime += 2; overtime += 1; overtime += 2; overtime += 3; console.log(overtime); // 9
Using the addition assignment operator reduces the lines of your code.
The concatenation assignment operator, +=
This operator's syntax is exactly the same as the addition assignment operator. The difference is in the data type used:
var longString = ""; longString += "Once"; longString += " upon"; longString += " a"; longString += " time"; longString += "..."; console.log(longString); // "Once upon a time..."
Operator precedence and associativity
Operator precedence is a set of rules that determines which operator should be evaluated first.
Consider the following example:
1 * 2 + 3
The result of the above code is 5, because the multiplication operator has precedence over the addition operator.
Operator associativity determines how the precedence works when the code uses operators with the same precedence.
There are two kinds:
- left-to-right associativity
- right-to-left associativity
For example, the assignment operator is right-to-left associative, while the greater than operator is left-to-right associative:
var num = 10; // the value on the right is assigned to the variable name on the left 5 > 4 > 3; // the 5 > 4 is evaluated first (to `true`), then true > 3 is evaluated to `false`, because the `true` value is coerced to `1`
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