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PHP 5 in practice

© August 2006 Anthony Lawrence
August 2006

As some of my readers know, I'm stuck in Perl. I started my web site with Perl and it's so completely dependent upon it now that I can't imagine changing. I don't think that's such a terrible place to be stuck, but I recognize that PHP is the lingua franca of the web.

Actually, when I think about changing, I realize I really could do it: there's nothing that stops me from starting to use PHP and leaving the existing Perl stuff in place.

Well, nothing but lack of expertise.

I've reviewed some other PHP books here, and every time I say the same thing: I need to start playing with this. And every time, the book gets tucked away on a shelf, and I forget about it. Will this time be any different?

Maybe, maybe not. I do like the structure of this book: every chapter starts with a "Quick Hits" section that just runs through relevant functions, giving short examples of usage.. I like that. The very first chapter started with a bunch of string handling functions; I remembered some of them from previous brief forays into PHP land, but it was comforting to skim through them looking at the types of things I have to do often in my own scripts.

You surely noticed that the title includes "In Practice". The authors mean it: these are real world examples of the types of problems every webmaster needs to handle. That's the only puzzling thing about this book: it's obviously strongly web focused, yet the title doesn't convey that impression. Oh well: as the back cover promises, this is a "how-to answer book" and not a tutorial. It's functional, direct, and relevant. I liked it.

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