After George Boole’s introduction of an algebraic approach to logic, the subject morphed towards a more set theoretic formulation, with so called Boolean algebra initiated by John Venn and Charles Peirce. Venn diagrams (originally going back to Euler), give us a visual way of representing relations between subsets of a universal set. The operations of meet and join, or intersection and union, together with taking complements become replacements for the product and sum of the Algebra of Boole.
In this set theoretic context, de Morgan’s laws clarify how to compute complements of unions and intersections, and the two distributive laws involve 3 sets, and either a union of an intersection, or the intersection of a union. We illustrate how to verify these laws from, first of all a truth table perspective, and then with computations using the Algebra of Boole.
There is a heretical message here: professors teaching circuit analysis to engineers might want to start thinking about revamping their subject, and replacing Boolean algebra with the original, more powerful and simpler Algebra of Boole!