CGI Programming on the World Wide Web
By Shishir Gundavaram
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Released: March 1996
Pages: 450

The World Wide Web is more than a place to put up clever documents and pretty pictures. With a little study and practice, you can offer interactive queries and serve instant information from databases, worked up into colorful graphics. That is what the Common Gateway Interface (CGI) offers.

This book offers a comprehensive explanation of CGI and related techniques for people who hold on to the dream of providing their own information servers on the Web.

Good scripting is not limited to a knowledge of CGI -- you need to know something about other programming tools that organize data and make the output look attractive. Gundavaram starts at the beginning, explaining the value of CGI and how it works, and takes you swiftly into the subtle details of programming. The book offers a comprehensive look at the job of providing information dynamically on the Web.

For most of the examples, this book uses the most common platform (UNIX) and the most popular language (Perl) used for CGI programming today. However, it also introduces the essentials of making CGI work with other platforms and languages. The actual programming techniques are not too different from one platform and language to another; the lessons from this book can be applied to any tools you choose.

Topics include:

  • Basic Perl techniques for parsing and output
  • Embedding Server Side Includes (SSI)
  • Graphics and simple animation
  • Forms and magic cookies
  • Gateways and SQL processing
  • Internet communications
  • Examples of games, imagemap manipulation, and other advanced applications
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