#1,108 – The Bitwise OR Operator

You can use the | operator to do a bitwise OR operation between two integer-based values.

An OR operation is applied to two different bits, returning true if either one or both input bits are true.  Here is a truth table showing the output value for all possible input combinations.

  • 0 | 0 = 0
  • 0 | 1 = 1
  • 1 | 0 = 1
  • 1 | 1 = 1

You can use the | operator on two arbitrary integer values as shown below.  The OR operation will be applied to the two integer values, one bit at a time.

            int n1 = 12;
            int n2 = 10;
            int result = n1 | n2;
            Console.WriteLine("{0} | {1} = {2}", n1, n2, result);

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It may help to use hex notation in order to better understand how the OR operation works on each bit.

            int n1 = 0xC;  // 12 (dec) or 1100 (bin)
            int n2 = 0xA;  // 10 (dec) or 1010 (bin)

            // result = 1110
            int result = n1 | n2;

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