#396 – Operators as Class Members

In C#, an operator is a symbol that defines some operation that should take place when evaluating an expression.

For example, the plus sign (+) is an operator that is typically used to add two numbers, or two instances of a class.

            int a = 5 + 6;   // 11
            string s = "Corn" + "dog";   // Corndog

For most operators, if you try using them on instances of a class that you define, the operator will have no meaning and you’ll get a compile-time error.  (With the exception of the equality (==) and inequality (!=) operators, which are automatically defined for every type).

If you want a particular operator to make sense for instances of a class that you define, you can define that operator as a member of your class.  For example, I could define the plus (+) operator for the Dog class, such that it merges the dog’s names and adds their ages.

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About Sean
Software developer in the Twin Cities area, passionate about .NET technologies. Equally passionate about my own personal projects related to family history and preservation of family stories and photos.

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