Think of this book as a friendly introduction to programming in PHP. This book is both an introduction to programming and an introduction to PHP. The book starts with the basics of PHP, including how to tell whether you need to install it. (Full installation instructions are included in Appendix A.) The book describes the basic features of PHP with examples of their use. If you have experience with programming, you can probably just skim this section, but if you don’t, all the programming basics are here.
The book goes on to describe the most common uses of PHP. It shows how to write scripts for Web sites, file manipulation, databases, and other common tasks. It provides techniques and shortcuts and warns against common errors. Both beginners and experienced programmers can write useful scripts for many common applications in a very short time by using the information in the application section (Part IV) of the book.