Given a number x and two positions (from the right side) in the binary representation of x, write a function that swaps n bits at given two positions and returns the result. It is also given that the two sets of bits do not overlap.
Let p1 and p2 be the two given positions.
x = 47 (00101111)
p1 = 1 (Start from the second bit from the right side)
p2 = 5 (Start from the 6th bit from the right side)
n = 3 (No of bits to be swapped)
The 3 bits starting from the second bit (from the right side) are
swapped with 3 bits starting from 6th position (from the right side)
x = 28 (11100)
p1 = 0 (Start from first bit from right side)
p2 = 3 (Start from 4th bit from right side)
n = 2 (No of bits to be swapped)
The 2 bits starting from 0th position (from right side) are
swapped with 2 bits starting from 4th position (from right side)
We need to swap two sets of bits. XOR can be used in a similar way as it is used to swap 2 numbers. Following is the algorithm.
1) Move all bits of the first set to the rightmost side set1 = (x >> p1) & ((1U << n) - 1) Here the expression (1U << n) - 1 gives a number that contains last n bits set and other bits as 0. We do & with this expression so that bits other than the last n bits become 0. 2) Move all bits of second set to rightmost side set2 = (x >> p2) & ((1U << n) - 1) 3) XOR the two sets of bits xor = (set1 ^ set2) 4) Put the xor bits back to their original positions. xor = (xor << p1) | (xor << p2) 5) Finally, XOR the xor with original number so that the two sets are swapped. result = x ^ xor
Result = 7
Following is a shorter implementation of the same logic
Swapping individual bits with XOR
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