Chapter Boolean Algebra

Basic Postulates

Postulate 1 Definition
A Boolean algebra is a closed algebraic system containing a set K of two or more elements and the two operators

.
AND Operator
(Dot/Multiplication)

and 

OR Operator
(Plus/Addition)

Postulate 2 Identity Property
There exists unique elements 1 (one) and 0 (zero) such that:

a) a  0 ! a b) a g1 ! a
where 0 is the identity element for the OR operator and 1 is the identity element for the AND operator.

Postulate 3 Commutative Property
For every a and b in set K

ab ! ba ayb ! bya

Postulate 4 Associative Property
For every a, b and c in set K

a  b  c ! a  b  c a g bgc ! a gb gc

Postulate 5 Distributive Property
For every a, b and c in set K

a y b  c ! a y b  a y c a  b y c ! a  b y a  c

Postulate 6 Complement Property
For every a in set K there exists a unique element called

a
such that

aa ! aya !

Suppression of We will write

Notation

a  b y c ! a  b y a  c
as

a  bc ! a  b a  c
Or,

g

is implied

Properties of 0 and 1 elements
OR AND Complement

a  0 ! a ag ! 0 0 a ! ag ! a 1

0 !1 1! 0

Venn Diagrams

Elements 1 and 0
Universal Set NULL Set

Also known as the Full Set Empty Set

Element a and a

AND Operator
‡ AND operator (intersection)

OR Operator
‡ OR operator (union)

Null Set

ag ! a

Universal Set

aa

Examples

Example
Use a Venn Diagram to prove

a  bc ! a  b a  c

Distributive Property
a
a

a  bc
b a

bc
b

c a

a+bc
b

c

c

Distributive Property

a  b a  c
a+b
a b a

a+c
b

c a

(a+b)(b+c)
b

c

c

Distributive Property

a  bc ! a  b a  c
a+bc
a b a

(a+b)(a+c)
b

c

c

Duality Property

Duality Property
If a Boolean expression is true, the dual of the expression is also true. To find the dual, Replace all OR¶s with AND¶s, all AND¶s with OR¶s, all ones with zeros and all zeros with ones.
Or, in equation form

f a , a , a ,K , , , ,

f a , a , a ,K , , , , 

Example
Find the dual of

a bc

a

b a c

Solution
Find the dual of

a bc
Solution

a
a

b a c
b a c

a bc

a b c ab ac

Basic Theorems

Theorem 1a: Idempotency

aa a

Proof using Postulates
aa

a  a a  a a  a
a  aa a a

P P a P a P P a

Theorem 1b: Idempotency

a ga ! a

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