Learning PHP

Discussion in 'Programming' started by etangins, Nov 16, 2013.

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  1. etangins

    etangins Member

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    81
    I am interested in learning PHP but am a little confused about what and how to install it. What is the best place for me to learn PHP? How do I install everything I need? I have dreamweaver so I was hoping to use that as my place to program.

    Thanks
     
  2. chrishirst

    chrishirst Well-Known Member Staff Member

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    http://php.net/


    Don't!!!
     
  3. etangins

    etangins Member

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    81
    That only seems to be the download site. What version should I download? What requirements to I need to have on my computer and web host? Why shouldn't I use Dreamweaver to program? What should I use? I saw w3schools.com has some tutorials on php. Does that cover everything? Should I learn there or someone else?
     
  4. ronaldroe

    ronaldroe Super Moderator Staff Member

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    1,223
    There's a few ways you can run PHP, and it all depends on what OS you're running. Post that, and I'll let you know what your options are.

    Dreamweaver doesn't weave dreams. It weaves crappy, useless and unmanageable code. It works pretty well if you only use the code editor and nothing else, but if that's what you'll be doing, there's a good many better free ones, like Sublime Text or Notepad++. Textmate if you're on Mac.

    I can't speak for w3schools PHP, because I only used them for CSS, but codecademy.com is a great resource for learning pretty much anything web-related, and it's where I learned/am learning PHP.
     
  5. etangins

    etangins Member

    Messages:
    81
    I have Windows 8 on a Toshiba Satellite with Intel Core i7 processor. I'm just looking for the best and simplest place to learn PHP to advance my web design skills/knowledge. I know HTML and CSS so far with a little JavaScript.
     
  6. Edge

    Edge Member

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    461
    I use it in code view as Notepad++ doesn't handle images. In DW, I click on an image it opens up in Fireworks. Nice. Keyboard shortcuts for FTP uploading speed up the workflow - no having to switch to another window. Also if I was writing a post for an article I might do some of it in DW as design view works well as a rich text editor and if you know what you are doing it doesn't create any crap. There are some nice functions for cleaning up code without losing the basic HTML structure. In fact it has a lot of useful little functions. However, I agree that design view should never be used to actually create anything layout wise.
     
  7. RDB

    RDB New Member

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    82
  8. ronaldroe

    ronaldroe Super Moderator Staff Member

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    You have a few options then. However, I'm going to say the easiest way is to just use MS WebMatrix. It'll install and configure PHP for you and start a server.

    I personally use the 5.3 windows installer from windows.php.net and then overwrite it with 5.5, which has a built-in server that you can run from the command line. It's a little less straightforward, but there's a lot less overhead.

    You could also use one of the many WAMP stacks out there, though I don't like them much, because they're more of a pain than they're worth sometimes.
     
  9. Phreaddee

    Phreaddee Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I realise ronald and chris dislike dreamweaver, but like edge I use it in code view, and I actually like it, yes if you "let" DW do it all for you, it will be rubbish, but it can be more powerful than you may think. Much more so than notepad++, and I've been using sublime in conjunction over the past few years, and there's a fair bit that sublime can't do as good either.

    I can't recall the last time it added useless unmanageable code to it for me to be honest, but you know that's just me - clearly.

    Plus things like the apdivs and the text properties panel have been phased out now. and design view is being phased out (but I'm not meant to be telling you that) ;)

    the thing I find truly ironic about this continual discussion is no one seems to have an issue with the extra "fluff" that wordpress adds to a site. yet get all up in arms about non-existent code that is added. sure years ago it did. I'm very pedantic about my code, and I would not use a program that I felt would jeopardise that.

    I can guarantee you I can design a site with dreamweaver, using a very streamlined workflow and set it live, with the addition of nada, zip, not one single extra character.

    so like those in the SEO game sprouting untruths as gospel, unless you're using the latest version I'd hold my tongue. Sure MX whatever, thats 10 years old now guys...
     
  10. chrishirst

    chrishirst Well-Known Member Staff Member

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    I don't particularly 'dislike' DW, because it makes for a very good site management tool, it's just the idea that so many think that it is a learning tool for design that I dislike, so they think that downloading and installing a 'cracked' copy makes them a world class 'designer' instantly.
     

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