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Learn PHP: Main Concepts and Principles Explained

PHP 5 Tutorial

So, you have successfully learned the basics (and more) about HTML and CSS languages. However, you may feel unsure about how the server-side of the website should be handled. You need to learn PHP to be capable of creating a decent website and releasing it into the big wild world.

We are confident that PHP is going to fill this void by giving you a chance to transform your website into a dynamic piece of art! Learn PHP now and find the way your page should handle users' data and manage other crucial functions!

We will now dive deeper into the question of what is PHP. It can’t be just a cluster of letters that have no meaning, right? PHP translates as Personal Home Page, but now it is more commonly referred to as Hypertext Preprocessor.

It was brought to life by Rasmus Lerdorf who released this language in 1995. Since then, it has become one of the most popular server-side programming languages in the world. As we have mentioned before, you should learn PHP for web development purposes, specifically for working on the back-end of sites.

The most significant difference between PHP and other programming languages like HTML or JavaScript is its purpose and usage. Imagine any website you visit daily: you will immediately picture its fonts, pictures or other beautiful details.

The appearance of a site is created with HTML or JavaScript. However, when developers are dealing with data, they turn to PHP. Therefore, if you have decent skills in web development when it comes to the graphical interface, the next step is to learn PHP and make your website dynamic and interactive.

Why You Should Learn PHP: Purpose and Use

Are you intrigued and ready to dive into this tutorial without any more excuses? Here we have a few more reasons why you should:

  • The constant demand for PHP programmers.
  • A huge community of users to connect to and share ideas.
  • Freedom to use PHP with various operating systems: iOS, Windows or Linux.
  • Supports main servers like Apache and Netscape.

We have already established that PHP deals with the server-side of websites. Now, let's take a look at the actual purposes of PHP:

  • File manipulation on the server: close, open, write to, read or delete them.
  • Safety first: you can encrypt data so it won’t end up in the wrong hands.
  • Cookie management: you can transmit and receive cookies.
  • Restriction: you can prevent unauthorized access to your website.
  • Communication: you can send emails to the users of your website.
  • Forms: you can collect information about users by using data entry forms.

Where to Start

PHP is an excellent addition to your overall skills. If you decide to learn it properly, we suggest that you follow some guidelines to make your learning experience more efficient.

  • Read our PHP tutorials and practice. We recommend starting from PHP introduction to review the main principles.
  • Move onto more specific tutorials: syntax, variables, etc.
  • Check out code examples and click Try it Live button to practice!
  • In case you are still struggling to use PHP, try a video or interactive course, explaining PHP in detail.

Once you start exploring this programming language, you will learn of a unique PHP file, processed by web servers. Files that have .php extension are simple text documents, containing PHP source code. However, when you open a PHP file with NotePad or another text editor, you won't be able to read the code because only servers read and process it.

What You Will Learn

Even if you are a newbie in the field of programming, this tutorial is going to be helpful and easy to understand. All essential aspects and principles are discussed in separate tutorials so you should not feel overwhelmed.

One of the first tutorials focuses on the installation process: do not miss it! Other tutorials focus on some of the basic principles of PHP, but the further you read, the more advanced lessons you’ll get. If these tutorials leave you craving for more information, check out a helpful course about the PHP language!

While you are looking at these tutorials or the recommended course, do not forget to practice! After all, practice makes perfect!