*Macmillan Science Library: Mathematics*. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.

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## Boolean Algebra

Boolean algebra is a branch of mathematics in which statements, ideas, numbers, and so forth are denoted by symbols (e.g., *x*, *y*, *z*) and can be acted upon by operators (e.g., AND or OR). The operator AND between two symbols (*x* AND *y*) is known as the union of *x* and *y* and refers to objects both in *x* and *y*. The operator OR represents the intersection of *x* and *y* (*x* OR *y*) and consists of objects either in *x*, in *y*, or in both *x* and *y*.

As an example of applying Boolean algebra in computers, let *x* and *y* denote two electronic circuits that are either closed (electricity flows) or open (electricity does not flow). The statement *x* AND *y* is represented by connecting the switches in series. (See series diagram.) The current will flow only if both *x* and *y...*

This section contains 732 words(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page) |