Minimum steps to convert one binary string to other only using negation

Given two binary strings A and B, the task is to convert A to B by choosing any sub-string of A and negating it (replace each 0 with 1 and each 1 with 0). Print the minimum number of operations required.

Examples:

Input: A = “101010”, B = “110011”
Output: 2
Choose the sub-string of length 2 from index 1 to 2 and negate it then A becomes “110010” and then take the last character and negate it.
The final string becomes “110011”

Input: A = “1010101”, B = “0011100”
Output: 3



Approach: Create a blank array and mark the indices which need to be negated. Then the answer will be number of blocks of consecutive 1’s in the array as a single block can be negated in a single operation.
For example, A = “101010” and B = “110011”
The newly created array will be {0, 1, 1, 0, 0, 1} so the answer will be 2,
A after first operation will be “110010”
After second operation “110011”

Below is the implementation of the above approach:

C++

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// C++ implementation of the above approach
#include <iostream>
using namespace std;
  
// Function to find the minimum steps 
// to convert string a to string b
void convert(int n, string a, string b)
{
    // array to mark the positions 
    // needed to be negated
    int l[n] ;
    int i ;
      
    for (i = 0; i < n; i++)
        l[i] = 0 ;
          
    for(i = 0;i < n; i++)
    {
  
        // If two character are not same 
        // then they need to be negated
        if(a[i] != b[i])
            l[i] = 1 ;
    }
      
    // To count the blocks of 1
    int cc = 0;
  
    // To count the number of 1's in 
    // each block of 1's
    int vl = 0 ;
    for(i = 0; i < n ; i++)
    {
        if (l[i] == 0)
        {
            if(vl != 0)
                cc += 1 ;
                  
            vl = 0 ;
        }
        else
            vl += 1 ;
    }
      
    // For the last block of 1's
    if(vl != 0)
        cc += 1 ;
  
    cout << cc << endl;
}
  
// Driver code
int main()
{
    string a = "101010";
    string b = "110011";
      
    int n = a.length();
    convert(n, a, b) ;
      
    return 0;
}
  
// This code is contributed by ANKITRAI1

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Java

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// Java implementation of the above approach
import java.util.*;
  
class solution
{
  
// Function to find the minimum steps 
// to convert string a to string b
static void convert(int n, String a, String b)
{
    // array to mark the positions 
    // needed to be negated
    int []l = new int[n];
    int i;
      
    for (i = 0; i < n; i++)
        l[i] = 0 ;
          
    for(i = 0;i < n; i++)
    {
  
        // If two character are not same 
        // then they need to be negated
        if(a.charAt(i) != b.charAt(i))
            l[i] = 1 ;
    }
      
    // To count the blocks of 1
    int cc = 0;
  
    // To count the number of 1's in 
    // each block of 1's
    int vl = 0 ;
    for(i = 0; i < n ; i++)
    {
        if (l[i] == 0)
        {
            if(vl != 0)
                cc += 1 ;
                  
            vl = 0 ;
        }
        else
            vl += 1 ;
    }
      
    // For the last block of 1's
    if(vl != 0)
        cc += 1 ;
  
    System.out.println(cc);
}
  
// Driver code
public static void main(String args[])
{
    String a = "101010";
    String b = "110011";
      
    int n = a.length();
    convert(n, a, b);
  
}
}

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Python3

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# Python3 implementation of the above approach
  
# Function to find the minimum steps 
# to convert string a to string b
def convert(n, a, b):
  
    # List to mark the positions needed to 
    # be negated
    l = [0] * n
    for i in range(n):
  
        # If two character are not same 
        # then they need to be negated
        if(a[i] != b[i]):
            l[i] = 1
  
    # To count the blocks of 1
    cc = 0
  
    # To count the number of 1's in each 
    # block of 1's
    vl = 0
    for i in range(n):
        if (l[i] == 0):
            if(vl != 0):
                cc += 1
            vl = 0
        else:
            vl += 1
  
    # For the last block of 1's
    if(vl != 0):
        cc += 1
  
    print(cc)
  
# Driver code
a = "101010"
b = "110011"
n = len(a)
convert(n, a, b)

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PHP

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<?php 
// PHP implementation of the above approach
  
// Function to find the minimum steps 
// to convert string a to string b
function convert($n, $a, $b)
{
    // array to mark the positions 
    // needed to be negated
    $l = array_fill(0, $n, NULL);
      
    for ($i = 0; $i < $n; $i++)
        $l[$i] = 0 ;
          
    for($i = 0; $i < $n; $i++)
    {
  
        // If two character are not same 
        // then they need to be negated
        if($a[$i] != $b[$i])
            $l[$i] = 1 ;
    }
      
    // To count the blocks of 1
    $cc = 0;
  
    // To count the number of 1's in 
    // each block of 1's
    $vl = 0 ;
    for($i = 0; $i < $n ; $i++)
    {
        if ($l[$i] == 0)
        {
            if($vl != 0)
                $cc += 1 ;
                  
            $vl = 0 ;
        }
        else
            $vl += 1 ;
    }
      
    // For the last block of 1's
    if($vl != 0)
        $cc += 1 ;
  
    echo $cc . "\n";
}
  
// Driver code
$a = "101010";
$b = "110011";
  
$n = strlen($a);
convert($n, $a, $b) ;
  
// This code is contributed 
// by ChitraNayal
?>

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Output:

2


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