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PHP Solutions: Dynamic Web Design Made Easy [Paperback]

David Powers
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
RRP: 27.49
Price: 24.66 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

10 Nov 2006 Solutions
In this book you'll learn how to:
  • Create dynamic websites with design and usability in mind, as well as functionality
  • Understand how PHP scripts work, giving you confidence to adapt them to your own needs
  • Bring online forms to life, check required fields, and ensure user input is safe to process
  • Upload files and automatically create thumbnails from larger images
  • Manage website content with a searchable database
You want to make your websites more dynamic by adding a feedback form, creating a private area where members can upload images that are automatically resized, or perhaps storing all your content in a database. The problem is, you're not a programmer and the thought of writing code sends a chill up your spine. Or maybe you've dabbled a bit in PHP and MySQL, but you can't get past baby steps. If this describes you, then you've just found the right book. PHP and the MySQL database are deservedly the most popular combination for creating dynamic websites. They're free, easy to use, and provided by many web hosting companies in their standard packages. Unfortunately, most PHP books either expect you to be an expert already or force you to go through endless exercises of little practical value. In contrast, this book gives you real value right away through a series of practical examples that you can incorporate directly into your sites, optimizing performance and adding functionality such as file uploading, email feedback forms, image galleries, content management systems, and much more. Each solution is created with not only functionality in mind, but also visual design.But this book doesn't just provide a collection of ready-made scripts: each PHP Solution builds on what's gone before, teaching you the basics of PHP and database design quickly and painlessly. By the end of the book, you'll have the confidence to start writing your own scripts or-if you prefer to leave that task to othersto adapt existing scripts to your own requirements.Right from the start, you're shown how easy it is to protect your sites by adopting secure coding practices. The book has been written with an eye on forward and backward compatibilityrecommending the latest PHP 5 techniques, but providing alternative solutions for servers still running PHP 4.3. All database examples demonstrate how to use the original MySQL extension, MySQL Improved, or the PHP Data Objects (PDO) introduced in PHP 5.1, letting you choose the most suitable option for your setup. Summary of Contents:
  • Chapter 1: What Is PHPAnd Why Should I Care?
  • Chapter 2: Getting Ready to Work with PHP
  • Chapter 3: How to Write PHP Scripts
  • Chapter 4: Lightening Your Workload with Includes
  • Chapter 5: Bringing Forms to Life
  • Chapter 6: Uploading Files
  • Chapter 7: Using PHP to Manage Files
  • Chapter 8: Generating Thumbnail Images
  • Chapter 9: Pages That Remember: Simple Login and Multipage Forms
  • Chapter 10: Setting Up MySQL and phpMyAdmin
  • Chapter 11: Getting Started with a Database
  • Chapter 12: Creating a Dynamic Online Gallery
  • Chapter 13: Managing Content
  • Chapter 14: Solutions to Common PHP/MySQL Problems
  • Chapter 15: Keeping Intruders at Bay

Frequently Bought Together

PHP Solutions: Dynamic Web Design Made Easy + HTML & CSS: Design and Build Web Sites
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Product details

  • Paperback: 460 pages
  • Publisher: FRIENDS OF ED (10 Nov 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590597311
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590597316
  • Product Dimensions: 22.3 x 19.2 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 610,353 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

I specialize in writing about web design using Dreamweaver, PHP, and CSS. PHP is the most popular server-side language that brings life to websites by communicating with external data sources, such as databases, news feeds, and XML documents. Adobe has recognized my expertise in web development by appointing me an Adobe Community Professional (ACP) for Dreamweaver. You'll often find me giving help in the Dreamweaver forums and Dreamweaver Community Help.

Before turning my hand to writing about web design, I spent nearly 30 years as a BBC radio and TV journalist, working both in front of the microphone/camera and behind the scenes. That gave me a wealth of experience in explaining sometimes difficult concepts in straightforward, easy to understand language - experience which shows through in my books.

I spent a large part of my broadcasting career in Japan, first on loan from the BBC to NHK, the Japan Broadcasting Corporation, and later as BBC correspondent. I have traveled all over Japan, and love taking photos, many of which end up being used in my books. Over the years, I have worked closely with the Shiki Theatrical Company, Japan's leading producer of musicals; and have translated several of their plays into English.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great book for the PHP beginner 8 Dec 2006
This book was exactly what I was waiting for. An introduction to PHP for the designer with instantly applicable examples. Even as I worked through the chapters I was able to use my new found powers in real life projects.

That's the most important aspect of a book like this; that you can see the results immediately and are buoyed along by small successes, rather than getting bogged down in massive amounts of theory and code before you can do anything practical.

I would recommend this book to any web designers who are comfortable with XHTML and CSS, but are daunted by the server-side side of things.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good but a missed opportunity 17 Oct 2008
This was one of a couple of PHP books that I bought at the same time. This one is getting dog-eared, the other is gathering dust. The book's main aim is to take the reader from beginner to being able to develop a database driven website.

The chosen project - an on-line photo gallery - happened to be sufficiently close to what I was looking to develop myself, so learning and code to copy/modify in one.

By and large the book achieves its aims but misses one or two tricks along the way. The first is security - this is mentioned in one of the final chapters but it would have been better if some simple techniques such as input filtering had been introduced early on along with the reasoning behind them.

Tying PHP to MySQL is the theme of the second part of the book and three approaches are used: the original MySQL extension; MySQLi and PDO. This leads to the second missed opportunity. The code for all three approaches is directly embedded in the HTML, it would have been nice to see an API developed to hide the actual implementation in use. The author's follow on book "PHP: OOP Solutions" does move the code into wrapper functions which effectively abstracts the underlying data model from the presentation.

Despite the above reservations, this book is well worth getting.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good book 12 Feb 2008
I bought this book in December 2006. I bought other books in Php. However, none of them were as good as Php solutions. I agree with the previous comments that is not a bed time book but more an exercise book with very good and useful tutorials. In addition, a good understanding in HTML is expected from the start as stated in the introduction. Most of the tutorials were incoporated into the two websites that I maintained. I still use this book when I got stuck for example when I created an intention to rejoin online form for a sailing club.
One fundamental good point of this book is that the examples are written on classic and advanced PHP. Not all the hosts allow advanced PHP when dealing with database.
I have not given full mark because, although one of the best, it is not perfect. There are a few typos although the amendum are online and are minor. The tutorials synthax could also be improved.
Saying all that, I strongly recommend this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great introduction. 26 July 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
PHP is quite daunting to begin with, but this book makes it much less so. It is ideal for somebody who doesn't have a lot of web-design experience, but needs to learn the basics of PHP. However, it is also useful for somebody with PHP experience. It covers a lot of ground in a very accessible way.
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I adore this book - it covers a wide spectrum of the skills you'll need in order to take your web developement to the next level - this book has now got a second edition, so probably best to get that one, but I can whole-heartedly reccomend it - master the content here and you will have some seriously capable skills to make brilliant dynamic websites.

The book fits a great balance as takings novices and making them feel welcome, but still offerring plenty for people with more experience. Some of the php techniques here are the most efficient I've seen. It really does cover all the main areas, in a lot of detail. I'm on my second reading of this book, it's that good. Highly reccomended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good grounding 3 Dec 2010
By Martin
I had previously been working through Build Your Own Database Driven Website using PHP & MYSQL
by Kevin Yank and got two thirds of the way through. It became a little toomuch and then I found this book by David Powers. Although it was published in 2006, I went ahead and bought it. It's been a great book for me. I found the writing style easy and usually clear enough. The information it provides has really enabled me to follow along and more importantly, to be able to use and adapt the processes to my own websites. For example, I have just used PHP to provide image files for a JQUERY lightbox gallery.

I had previously been struggling with various concepts of using PHP in web pages and how it interacts with HTML, but I found this book gave me plenty of answers. I'm certainly no master but I'm more confident and many things make more sense than before.

I would be interested to see the updated version which is due out soon.
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