# Operators

## Cuprins

An operator is something that takes one or more values (or expressions, in programming jargon) and yields another value (so that the construction itself becomes an expression).

Operators can be grouped according to the number of values they take. Unary operators take only one value, for example ! (the logical not operator) or ++ (the increment operator). Binary operators take two values, such as the familiar arithmetical operators + (plus) and - (minus), and the majority of PHP operators fall into this category. Finally, there is a single ternary operator, ? :, which takes three values; this is usually referred to simply as "the ternary operator" (although it could perhaps more properly be called the conditional operator).

A full list of PHP operators follows in the section Operator Precedence. The section also explains operator precedence and associativity, which govern exactly how expressions containing several different operators are evaluated.

### User Contributed Notes 13 notes

203
Anonymous
13 years ago
``` of course this should be clear, but i think it has to be mentioned espacially:AND is not the same like &&for example:<?php \$a && \$b || \$c; ?>is not the same like<?php \$a AND \$b || \$c; ?>the first thing is(a and b) or cthe seconda and (b or c)'cause || has got a higher priority than and, but less than &&of course, using always [ && and || ] or [ AND and OR ] would be okay, but than you should at least respect the following:<?php \$a = \$b && \$c; ?><?php \$a = \$b AND \$c; ?>the first code will set \$a to the result of the comparison \$b with \$c, both have to be true, while the second code line will set \$a like \$b and THAN - after that - compare the success of this with the value of \$cmaybe usefull for some tricky coding and helpfull to prevent bugs :Dgreetz, Warhog ```
19
yasuo_ohgaki at hotmail dot com
16 years ago
``` Other Language books' operator precedence section usually include "(" and ")" - with exception of a Perl book that I have. (In PHP "{" and "}" should also be considered also). However, PHP Manual is not listed "(" and ")" in precedence list. It looks like "(" and ")" has higher precedence as it should be. Note: If you write following code, you would need "()" to get expected value. <?php \$bar = true; \$str = "TEST". (\$bar ? 'true' : 'false') ."TEST"; ?> Without "(" and ")" you will get only "true" in \$str. (PHP4.0.4pl1/Apache DSO/Linux, PHP4.0.5RC1/Apache DSO/W2K Server) It's due to precedence, probably. ```
figroc at gmail dot com
9 years ago
``` The variable symbol '\$' should be considered as the highest-precedence operator, so that the variable variables such as \$\$a[0] won't confuse the parser.  [http://www.php.net/manual/en/language.variables.variable.php] ```
phpnet dot 20 dot dpnsubs at xoxy dot net
10 years ago
``` Note that in php the ternary operator ?: has a left associativity unlike in C and C++ where it has right associativity. You cannot write code like this (as you may have accustomed to in C/C++): <?php \$a = 2; echo (     \$a == 1 ? 'one' :     \$a == 2 ? 'two' :     \$a == 3 ? 'three' :     \$a == 4 ? 'four' : 'other'); echo "\n"; // prints 'four' ?> You need to add brackets to get the results you want: <?php \$a = 2; echo (\$a == 1 ? 'one' :         (\$a == 2 ? 'two' :         (\$a == 3 ? 'three' :         (\$a == 4 ? 'four' : 'other') ) ) ); echo "\n"; //prints 'two' ?> ```
-15
janturon at email dot cz
10 years ago
``` This is very common problem: set one variable to another, if it is not empty. If it is, set it to something else.For example: set \$bar to \$foo, if \$foo is empty, set \$bar to "undefined";if(!empty(\$foo)) \$bar= \$foo; else \$bar= "undefined";OR operator can shorten it:\$bar= @\$foo or \$bar= "undefined"; ```
-16
golotyuk at gmail dot com
11 years ago
``` Simple POST and PRE incremnt sample:<?php\$b = 5;\$a = ( ( ++\$b ) > 5 ); // Pre-increment testecho (int)\$a;\$b = 5;\$a = ( ( \$b++ ) > 5 ); // Post-increment testecho (int)\$a;?>This will output 10, because of the difference in post- and pre-increment operations ```
-15
10 years ago
``` In response to mathiasrav at gmail dot com:The reason for that behavior is the parentheses.  From the description:"Parentheses may be used to force precedence, if necessary. For instance: (1 + 5) * 3 evaluates to 18."So the order of operations says that even though the equality operator has higher precedence, the parentheses in your statement force the assignment operator to a higher precedence than the equality operator.That said, it still doesn't work the way you expect it to.  Neither way works, for these reasons:<?phpif ( \$a != (\$a = \$b) )?>Order of operations says to do the parentheses first.  So you end up with:<?php\$a = \$b;if ( \$a != \$a )?>Which is obviously going to be false.  Without the parentheses:<?phpif ( \$a != \$a = \$b )?>Order of operations says to do the inequality first, then the assignment, so you have:<?phpif ( \$a != \$a );\$a = \$b;?>Which again is not what you expected, and again will always be false.  But because you are only working with values of 0 and 1, you can make use of the XOR operator:<?phpif ( \$a ^= \$b )?>This will only be true if 1) \$a is 0 and \$b is 1, or 2) \$a is 1 and \$b is 0.  That is precisely what you wanted, and it even does the assignment the way you expected it to.<?phpforeach (\$ourstring as \$c) {  if (\$bold ^= \$c['bold']) \$resstring .= bold;  if (\$underline ^= \$c['underline']) \$resstring .= underline;  \$resstring .= \$c[0];}?>That code now works and produces the output you expected. ```
-21
rick at nomorespam dot fourfront dot ltd dot uk
12 years ago
``` A quick note to any C developers out there, assignment expressions are not interpreted as you may expect - take the following code ;-<?php\$a=array(1,2,3);\$b=array(4,5,6);\$c=1;\$a[\$c++]=\$b[\$c++];print_r( \$a ) ;?>This will output;-Array ( [0] => 1 [1] => 6 [2] => 3 )as if the code said;-\$a[1]=\$b[2];Under a C compiler the result is;-Array ( [0] => 1 [1] => 5 [2] => 3 )as if the code said;-\$a[1]=\$b[1];It would appear that in php the increment in the left side of the assignment is processed prior to processing the right side of the assignment, whereas in C, neither increment occurs until after the assignment. ```
-24
me at robrosenbaum dot com
10 years ago
``` The scope resolution operator ::, which is missing from the list above, has higher precedence than [], and lower precedence than 'new'. This means that self::\$array[\$var] works as expected. ```
-31
pgarvin76+php dot net at NOSPAMgmail dot com
8 years ago
``` Method chaining is read left to right (left associative):<?phpclass Test_Method_Chain{    public function One()    {        echo "One" . PHP_EOL;        return \$this;    }    public function Two()    {        echo "Two" . PHP_EOL;        return \$this;    }    public function Three()    {        echo "Three" . PHP_EOL;        return \$this;    }}\$test = new Test_Method_Chain();\$test->One()->Two()->Three();/* Ouputs:OneTwoThree*/?> ```
-29
Gautam
10 years ago
``` <?php\$result1 = 7 + 8 * 9/3 -4;\$result2 = 7 + 8 * (9/3 -4);\$result3 =(7 + 8)* 9/3 -4;echo "Result1 for 7 + 8 * 9/3 -4 = \$result1  Result2 for 7 + 8 * (9/3 -4) = \$result2 and Result3 (7 + 8)* 9/3 -4 = \$result3 "/* which gives results as under Result1 for 7 + 8 * 9/3 -4 = 27 Result2 for 7 + 8 * (9/3 -4) = -1 and Result3 (7 + 8)* 9/3 -4 = 41 Execution Order is 1) expression in brackets 2) division 3) multiplication 4) addition and 5) subtraction */?> ```
-24
arth dot inbox+php dot net at gmail dot com
2 years ago
``` &= operator.It is binary and followed expressions give different results:\$a = \$b = 1;echo \$a &= 2;  // 0echo \$a = \$a && 2; // 1 ```
-105
ddascalescu at gmail dot com
9 years ago
``` The -> operator, not listed above, is called "object operator" (T_OBJECT_OPERATOR). ```