Operators in C | Set 1 (Arithmetic Operators)

Operators are the foundation of any programming language. Thus the functionality of C language is incomplete without the use of operators. Operators allow us to perform different kinds of operations on operands. In C, operators in Can be categorized in following categories:

  • Arithmetic Operators (+, -, *, /, %, post-increment, pre-increment, post-decrement, pre-decrement)
  • Relational Operators (==, != , >, <, >= & <=) Logical Operators (&&, || and !)
  • Bitwise Operators (&, |, ^, ~, >> and <<)
  • Assignment Operators (=, +=, -=, *=, etc)
  • Other Operators (conditional, comma, sizeof, address, redirecton)

Arithmetic Operators: These are used to perform arithmetic/mathematical operations on operands. The binary operators falling in this category are:

    • Addition: The ‘+’ operator adds two operands. For example, x+y.
    • Subtraction: The ‘-‘ operator subtracts two operands. For example, x-y.
    • Multiplication: The ‘*’ operator multiplies two operands. For example, x*y.
    • Division: The ‘/’ operator divides the first operand by the second. For example, x/y.
    • Modulus: The ‘%’ operator returns the remainder when first operand is divided by the second. For example, x%y.
// C program to demonstrate working of binary arithmetic operators
#include<stdio.h>

int main()
{
    int a = 10, b = 4, res;

    //printing a and b
    printf("a is %d and b is %d\n", a, b);

    res = a+b; //addition
    printf("a+b is %d\n", res);

    res = a-b; //subtraction
    printf("a-b is %d\n", res);

    res = a*b; //multiplication
    printf("a*b is %d\n", res);

    res = a/b; //division
    printf("a/b is %d\n", res);

    res = a%b; //modulus
    printf("a%%b is %d\n", res);

    return 0;
}

Output:

a is 10 and b is 4
a+b is 14
a-b is 6
a*b is 40
a/b is 2
a%b is 2

The ones falling into the category of unary arithmetic operators are:

  • Increment: The ‘++’ operator is used to increment the value of an integer. When placed before the variable name (also called pre-increment operator), its value is incremented instantly. For example, ++x.
    And when it is placed after the variable name (also called post-increment operator), its value is preserved temporarily until the execution of this statement and it gets updated before the execution of the next statement. For example, x++.
  • Decrement: The ‘–‘ operator is used to decrement the value of an integer. When placed before the variable name (also called pre-decrement operator), its value is decremented instantly. For example, –x.
    And when it is placed after the variable name (also called post-decrement operator), its value is preserved temporarily until the execution of this statement and it gets updated before the execution of the next statement. For example, x–.
// C program to demonstrate working of Unary arithmetic operators
#include<stdio.h>

int main()
{
    int a = 10, b = 4, res;

    // post-increment example:
    // res is assigned 10 only, a is not updated yet
    res = a++;
    printf("a is %d and res is %d\n", a, res); //a becomes 11 now


    // post-decrement example:
    // res is assigned 11 only, a is not updated yet
    res = a--;
    printf("a is %d and res is %d\n", a, res);  //a becomes 10 now


    // pre-increment example:
    // res is assigned 11 now since a is updated here itself
    res = ++a;
    // a and res have same values = 11
    printf("a is %d and res is %d\n", a, res);


    // pre-decrement example:
    // res is assigned 10 only since a is updated here itself
    res = --a;
    // a and res have same values = 10
    printf("a is %d and res is %d\n",a,res); 

    return 0;
}

Output:

a is 11 and res is 10
a is 10 and res is 11
a is 11 and res is 11
a is 10 and res is 10

We will soon be discussing other categories of operators in different posts.

To know about Operator Precedence and Associativity, refer this link:

Quiz on Operators in C

This article is contributed by Ayush Jaggi. Please write comments if you find anything incorrect, or you want to share more information about the topic discussed above

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