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4.2 out of 5 stars21
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 6 August 2001
It looks like a really good book, and what it covers, it does excellently. However, I was extremely disappointed with this book, which is already vastly out of date, and covers none of the improvements of PHP4 over PHP3.
In particular, it still clings to the use of cookies to share data between web pages, and makes no mention of PHP's extensive sessions functions, which allow this to be done without any cookies at all.
One cannot blame the authors, for it appears that PHP4 was still in beta when they were writing. However, if this book is to continue to be sold a professional (and somewhat expensive) guide, it requires extensive updating.
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on 17 February 2000
I'm always wary of books that have to congratulate the authors by having their photograph on the cover - and this one has five!
This book is an excellent beginner's tutorial with concise and clear examples throughout. But as this is roughly the 15th language I've learn't the lack of depth became very frustrating quite quickly. This carries over to the other topics they touch on: their superficial brushing off of concerns about cookies is *very* annoying. The authors really need to read "Philip and Alex's Guide to Web Publishing" to find out why cookies really are bad (an excellent book, although the author's picture on the cover, with his dog, does warn you of the occasionally self-absorbed content).
"Professional PHP" does have a reference section where the functions are grouped by category, again excellent for beginners, but there's no full, alphabetical, function and variable index in the back! If I know the function I want to use, but need to remind myself of the argument ordering etc. it's extremely labourious and frustrating to thumb through the pages of reference looking for the right section. I notice that O'Reilly now have a pocket PHP reference which may solve this problem.
Personally I'm still looking forward to the O'Reilly "complete reference" treatment whenever they get around to it.
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on 24 February 2002
This book is extremely useful to those wanting to use PHP. If you've done no programming before, Learning PHP 4 might be a better choice, but for those of us who know what a loop is, this is *the* book to buy. With this and [...] you will have all the information you need.
The sample code provided in the book is extremely useful, and is well-explained in the text.
The one negative thing about it is that the function reference provided in the back of the book is laid out by function type groups, not function name. This is OK if you want to look up a PostgreSQL function, but it's tricky to find a certain function by its name (e.g. strtoftime()) to check the syntax. That's a tiny niggle with an otherwise excellent book, however. Want to learn PHP? Buy it!
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on 17 May 2000
This is superb. I've been reading a lot of PHP stuff recently and have not come across another book, site, mailing list or discussion group which has got me what I need to know as fast as this book did-- and just in time for the Pointy Headed Boss's deadline too! The section on integration with mySQL was particularly better than anything else I've found.
I'm not knocking off stars for the authors' pictures being on the cover, because I've covered my copy in brown paper. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. (As you might guess, I come into the 'total beginner, bitten off more than she can chew' category! )
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on 25 July 2000
Gives a good overview of the functions and methods of PHP, and provides the examples that the online manual... is lacking, but this is not a language tutorial and I would not reccomend it to those who have not already had experience with a similar programming language (PERL, C).
The book also into enough detail in the advanced features (Such as Security, Connectivity) to make this book much use to the advanced programmer. In short, I would not reccomend this book to anyone except the experienced proggrammer who has just started to learn PHP.
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on 27 January 2000
I am a PHP developer and I found this book a great read. It aims to please all and has material for both those new to PHP and old hands to PHP. From subjects such as PHP variables and arrays and advanced subjects such as XML, LDAP and Databases this book has it all. The book has loads of sample code and examples such as a ecommerce example and case studies. I recommend this book to PHP developers of all levels.
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on 30 March 2000
This book is great for any one new to php programming. Even though you can get a lot of info about php from first bought Core php programming (leon Atkinson) I rushed to get my hands on something about php!. But after buying this book I don't bother with the other one. The examples are clear and easy to follow, More depth about functions and variables,(not like core php programming). Even though I advise anyone before getting this book.To do some research and get used to the syntax of this powerful server-side scripting language. And when you get this book it will all makes sense (trust me). I made a great feedback form using php for my website in less time than I thought!. Four stars to this book!
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on 23 February 2000
I started by getting Core PHP Programming, by Leon Atkinson, but soon found out that I was obtaining more help from the PHP mailing list. Then I happened to come accross this one.
I have no doubt about my performance increase after I carefuly studied the contents of this book. Not only it covers very well issues like installing a complete PHP/MySQL based website but also contains several case studies that will help beginners understand how to use PHP to create fully featured active sites.
For the experienced programer, it will always be useful to refresh their mind with some good examples of well organized code.
It is a must for anyone wanting to use PHP!
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on 25 May 2000
An excellent book that covers the main topics succinctly. It gently guides the reader without dictating or waffling. It also works well both as a "reading through" book and as a "reference" book.
The only problem is, as noted elsewhere in the reviews, it stops just short of being a "professional" reference. In my case, I don't mind that as I like to experiment/find out things for myself but I can see that others might be frustrated by this.
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on 16 November 2000
Having used allsorts to get my pages up and running and having read these comments before I bought the books to help me, I feel that I ought to put a comment here that would have helped me before I bought this is not the most organised or up-to-date book for php. I found it vary hard to find the info I needed - I knew it would be in there it was missing a load of functions...try CORE php programming by Leon Atkinson (2nd Ed) instead -very neat!
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