PHP is a simple yet powerful open-source scripting language for creating dynamic web content. The millions of web sites powered by PHP are testament to its popularity and ease of use. PHP is used by both programmers, who appreciate its flexibility and speed, and web designers, who value its accessibility and convenience. Programming PHP is an authoritative guide to PHP 4 and is filled with the unique knowledge of the creator of PHP, Rasmus Lerdorf. This book explains PHP language syntax and programming techniques in a clear and concise manner, with numerous examples that illustrate both correct usage and common idioms. The book also includes style tips and practical programming advice that will help you become not just a PHP programmer, but a good PHP programmer. Programming PHP covers everything you need to know to create effective web applications with PHP. Contents include:
Detailed information on the basics of the PHP language, including data types, variables, operators, and flow control statements
Separate chapters on the fundamental topics of functions, strings, arrays, and objects
Coverage of common PHP web application techniques, such as form processing and validation, session tracking, and cookies
Material on interacting with relational databases, such as MySQL and Oracle, using the database-independent PEAR DB library
Chapters on generating dynamic images, creating PDF files, and parsing XML files with PHP
Advanced topics, like creating secure script, error handling, performance tuning, and writing your own C language extensions to PHP
A handy quick reference to all the core functions in PHP and all the standard extensions that ship with PHP
started the PHP Project back in 1995 and has been actively involved in PHP development ever since. Also involved in a number of other Open Source projects, Rasmus is a longtime Apache contributor and foundation member. He is the author of the first edition of the PHP Pocket Reference, and the co-author of Programming PHP.
Kevin Tatroe has been a Macintosh and Unix programmer for ten years. Being lazy, he's attracted to languages and frameworks that do much of the work for you, such as the AppleScript, Perl, and PHP languages and the WebObjects and Cocoa programming environments. Kevin, his wife Jenn, his son Hadden, and two cats live on the edge of the rural plains of Colorado, just far away enough from the mountains to avoid the worst snowfall, and just close enough to avoid tornadoes. The house is filled with LEGO creations, action figures, and other toys.
Our look is the result of reader comments, our own experimentation, and feedback from distribution channels. Distinctive covers complement our distinctive approach to technical topics, breathing personality and life into potentially dry subjects. The animal on the cover of Programming PHP is a cuckoo (Cuculus canorus). Cuckoos epitomize minimal effort. The common cuckoo doesn't build a nest-instead, the female cuckoo finds another bird's nest that already contains eggs and lays an egg in it (a process she may repeat up to 25 times, leaving 1 egg per nest). The nest mother rarely notices the addition, and usually incubates the egg and then feeds the hatchling as if it were her own. Why don't nest mothers notice that the cuckoo's eggs are different from their own? Recent research suggests that it's because the eggs look the same in the ultraviolet spectrum, which birds can see.
When they hatch, the baby cuckoos push all the other eggs out of the nest. If the other eggs hatched first, the babies are pushed out too. The host parents often continue to feed the cuckoo even after it grows to be much larger than they are, and cuckoo chicks sometimes use their call to lure other birds to feed them as well. Interestingly, only Old World (European) cuckoos colonize other nests-the New World (American) cuckoos build their own (untidy) nests. Like many Americans, these cuckoos migrate to the tropics for winter.
Cuckoos have a long and glorious history in literature and the arts. The Bible mentions them, as do Pliny and Aristotle. Beethoven used the cuckoo's distinctive call in his Pastoral Symphony. And here's a bit of etymology for you: the word "cuckold" (a husband whose wife is cheating on him) comes from "cuckoo." Presumably, the practice of laying one's eggs in another's nest seemed an appropriate metaphor. Rachel Wheeler was the production editor and copyeditor for Programming PHP. Sue Willing and Jeffrey Holcomb provided quality control, and Sue Willing provided production assistance. Ellen Troutman-Zaig wrote the index.
Ellie Volckhausen designed the cover of this book, based on a series design by Edie Freedman. The cover image is a 19th-century engraving from the Dover Pictorial Archive. Emma Colby produced the cover layout with QuarkXPress 4.1 using Adobe's ITC Garamond font.
Melanie Wang designed the interior layout, based on a series design by David Futato. Neil Walls converted the files from Microsoft Word to FrameMaker 5.5.6 using tools created by Mike Sierra. The text font is Linotype Birka; the heading font is Adobe Myriad Condensed; and the code font is LucasFont's TheSans Mono Condensed. The illustrations that appear in the book were produced by Robert Romano and Jessamyn Read using Macromedia FreeHand 9 and Adobe Photoshop 6. This colophon was written by Nathan Torkington and Rachel Wheeler.
I have been using this book for over a year now, and it has been a lifesaver. It is so handy to have a constant reference close at hand. Even with the wonderful PHP docs available at php.net, this book is very useful, particularly if you're learning PHP after knowing another language.
It does not cover advanced programming topics, but it is a very thorough reference to PHP. It is very interesting to read back through it after a year of working with PHP; many of the things that have puzzled me in the past about PHP are noted in passing in the text, even in the very beginning chapters about variables, flow control, etc.
A required book for anybody who writes significant amounts of PHP.
This book is very thorough and relevant. It is targeted at perl and python programmers who want to use php. Chapters on regular expressions, arrays, web techniques, databases, and xml are informative and concise. This book also mentions php extensions.
I was amazed to discover how much information is packed in a single book.
If you want to learn php from the ground up this book is for you.
Programming PHP is a great introduction to PHP. The chapters are well written with good examples that explain what is being discussed. The chapters are not written in a "read one after the other" fashion, so you can easily go to the chapter you need information on and find what you are looking for. This book did have some errors in the sample code, but if you read the text and actually try out the examples you can easily figure out what needs to be fixed to get them running. Since the O'Reilly "Programming" series is more about advanced programming issues, I think this book should have had the title "Learning PHP". It just seems to be an introduction, because it did not delve into any advanced topics. It is worthy to have on any PHP developers bookshelf. Recommended.
This book is an excellent addition to a web designers bookcase. Clear and easy to read, it is written by the inventor of PHP, so you know it mirrors how PHP was designed to be used. It is also at good technical level for many computer professionals...not too simple, not over your head.
Included examples do not include excessive amounts of code, which in my opinion, makes it easier to understand the concepts. If you are looking for a book with huge elaborate appplication examples, you may wish to search elsewhere.
I would recommend this book to anyone interested in PHP development.