PHP has now become one of the strongest server side scripting languge along with ASP. PHP is open source and its syntax is quite similar to C, that is the reason why it is gaining so much popularity and its community is increasing day by day. It’s hard to say that you have mastered PHP because it is very diverse. For example, you might have full knowledge of PHP as a web programming language, but you might not have covered how to process an image using GD or you might not have done work with PHP as a desktop application development. That being said, there are a lot of resources out there that help you learn the basics of PHP, for example, form processing, security, database interactions and array manipulation. PHP is used mostly in order to create dynamic, interactive and fast web applications. but not limited to.
I have compiled a list of some of the best e-learning websites for PHP that are sorted from easy (basic) to hard (advanced) manner that will guide you and will help you in learning PHP from scratch to advanced level.If you are new to PHP, then first 4 or 5 resources given below will help you alot. If you are an intermediate programmer and want to learn advaned PHP concepts then try consulting the resources from 6 to 10.
If you want to learn new web programming language like PHP, then go to www.w3schools.com first. It is free of cost and has been designed in the most user-friendly and interactive manner. W3schools is highly recommended for students who are trying to learn any new web programming language. Just try it once and you will find all the information, you need in order to start playing with any particular language like PHP. An important aspect of this website is that is does not only focus on the theory, but also gives you a really good platform to run and execute small web programs.
After w3schools, php.net website is the best place for learning PHP. This is an official PHP website that is maintained very well and contains information that is easy to learn. Lots of examples posted by the users of this web site further helps and makes it easy to understand the concept. The site contains various online tutorials of PHP from beginner level to advance level. All tutorials at this website are free and are highly recommended for students. If you have little experience or even no experience of PHP, just visit this site and you will end up with good knowledge of PHP that can help you to develop web applications.
This is not really a PHP tutorial website. It’s actually an online Q & A based forum where you post some question regarding a problem and some experts in that field will post the answers or solutions to that problem. You can ask any PHP related question whether about PHP language constucts and functions or about using those constructs and functions. You’ll receive back answers from those experts or online community with code samples and examples to best understand and apply those constructs and functions.
Next best resource to learn PHP is WikiBook for PHP Programming. This is a Wiki type website. It contains a open-content textbook for PHP that anyone can edit. It is useful, simple and easy to learn website. If you are beginner and looking to see another resource for easy and basic PHP concepts then this website is for you.It starts with how to install PHP on your PC or Mac and then moves on to the basics of PHP, language contructs, web concepts, and then moves on to the advanced concepts like data structures, templating and object-oriented programming.
Next best resource to search for PHP tutorials is youtube. It is possibly one of the best place to search for video lectures. You’ll find any kind of PHP video lectures from basic to advanced. Most importantly in any language. And above all the are free of cost. There are some short tutorials on other website as well but they will charge you for a full length tutorials e.g. KillerPHP has some short video lectures on PHP. These video tutorials will give you a kick start to develop basic PHP programs. For anyone wanted to learn PHP at an advanced level is discouraged to use these video tutorials.
PHPBuilder is very old website that provides a platform for PHP scripts and knowledge sharing. They claim to be running since 1999. It contains thousands of tutorials specifically for PHP. These tutorials are arranged in different categories. It also has a very active forum that can quickly answer any of your queries. You can not only read and learn different articles and tutorials but you can also contribute your knowledge by giving a link of your article. However, your article has to pass the review process.
PHP Freaks is another very informative and resourceful website. This website is totally dedicated to learning and teaching PHP. Here you will find a forum consisting of thousands of members who have posted millions of posts on the forums. You’ll also find tutorials covering various aspects of PHP and you will find news syndicated from other websites so you can stay up-to-date. Along with the tutorials, the developers on the forum will be able to help you with your scripts.
Nettuts+ is an advanced programming blog. Nettuts+ is, actually, part of the Tuts+ Network, teaching creative skills to millions worldwide. It has a special category for PHP developers also. You can find lots of articles that tell you advanced and latest programming techniques.
Zend is a PHP company. Zend is also a PHP framework for building large and advanced web applications. Once you are comfortable developing small and medium data oriented web applications with PHP, the next thing that you need to learn is a framework. You should target some open-source framework that are free of cost. Zend is, however, not free of cost. But lots of large software companies prefer to develop PHP web applications using Zend framework. This website also contains tutorials and articles on how to develop web applications using Zend framework.
CakePHP makes building web applications simpler, faster and require less code. This is again a PHP framework just like Zend but it is mighty productive. The real difference between these two frameworks is that CakePHP is free and open-source licensed under MIT, where as Zend is not open-source. You have to purchase license for Zend Framework. I would recommend any advanced PHP developer to either use Zend or CakePHP for advanced PHP web application development. You can find lots of tutorials, code samples and helping book in the form of PDF to download.
This is my list of PHP resources sorted in order of increasing complexity and advanced technologies.
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