PHP Programming Language
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The first version of PHP was unleashed way back in 1994. It started as a small open source project. The language has evolved and has become very popular and useful today. The word PHP is the acronym of “PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor. This programming language is a scripting server-side language that is embedded in HTML. The PHP language is used to manage databases, dynamic content. Session tracking, building e-commerce websites, etc.
PHP can be integrated with a myriad of reputable databases such as PostgreSQL, Sybase, Informix, SQL, Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server and many more. Our PHP project help experts say that the language is zippy in its execution. This is especially true when it is compiled as an Apache module on the UNIX side. Once you start the MYSQL server, very complex queries will be executed with huge result sets in record-setting time.
Additionally, PHP is known to support a wide range of major protocols like IMAP, POP3, and LDAP. When the PHP4 version was released, it made n-tier development possible for the first time. This is because it added support for Java and distributed object architecture (COM and CORBA). The syntax of PHP is like that of C. Programmers and developers say that the language also tries to be forgiving as possible (allows and pardons mistakes). Hire our PHP assignment help professionals for a detailed piece on introduction to PHP.
Uses of PHP Programming Language
The PHP language can be used to perform system functions. For example, it can create, open, write and read system files. Some of its other uses include:
- A programmer can use PHP to add, delete and modify elements within their databases
- PHP can encrypt data
- PHP allows you to restrict access to particular pages in your websites
- As a developer, programmer or user, you can access cookies variables and set cookies
- PHP programming language is excellent with forms. It can gather data from files, save data to a file, send data through email and return data to the user.
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Characteristics of PHP
This language boasts of five critical characteristics that make it as practical in nature as possible:
Scripting in PHP
Are you new to PHP programming? Let us give you a feel of the language using a simple script. We are going to create a simple script saying “My first PHP lesson!” Like we said earlier, PHP is embedded in HTML. This means that you will have your PHP statement amongst your normal HTML or XHTML as shown in our example:
<title> My first PHP class</title>
<?php echo “My first PHP class!”;?>
This simple code produces the following result: My first PHP class!
In our example, the PHP code is not present in the file sent from the server to the web browser. All of the PHP present is our webpage will be stripped from the page and pure HTML output is the only thing returned from the web server to the client.
PHP codes must be included in special markup tags. There are 3 tags that are recognized by the PHP parser. However, the most popular tag usually used is the <?php …. Your code… ?>. We are going to use this same tag in all our examples.
PHP Environment Setup
You must install the following three vital components in your computer to develop and run PHP web pages.
- Web Server – PHP is a popular language because it virtually works with all web server software, including Microsoft’s IIS (Internet Information Server). However, the freely available and mostly used is the Apache Server. Apache can be downloaded free of charge.
- Database – Also, PHP works with almost all databases like Oracle, Sybase, MySQL, etc. MySQL is the most commonly used and freely available database.
- PHP Parser – The PHP Parser is responsible for processing PHP script instructions. It generates the HTML output that is sent to the web browser.
Get our PHP assignment help service if you need any guidance on how to install any of these components in your PC. Here is a simple tutorial on how to install a PHP Parser.
Please ensure that you have a proper environment setup on your machine to develop your web programs using PHP before you proceed. To check if you have properly installed a PHP web server installed, type the following address into your browser: http: // 127.0.0.1/info.php. If it returns information related to your PHP installation then everything is fine. Otherwise, you must install PHP in your computer using a specific procedure depending on the platform you are using. Our PHP homework help service providers can help you install PHP with Apache on Linux or Unix, macOS, Windows.
PHP Syntax Overview
- Escaping to PHP
This is the mechanism that allows the PHP parsing engine to differentiate PHP code from other elements on the page. You can escape to PHP using the following four ways:
- Canonical PHP tags
These are the universal PHP tags. The effective PHP tag style is: <?php … ?>. Using this style ensures that your tags are correctly interpreted.
- SGML style (short-open) tags
They are the shortest options and they look like this: <? …?>. However, you must do the two things mentioned below for PHP to recognize the tags:
- When you are building PHP, make sure that you choose the enable short tags configuration
- Turn on the “set the short_open_tag” setting in your php.ini file. Note that you should disable this option to parse XML with PHP. This is because the same syntax is used for XML tags.
- ASP-style tags
These types of tags mimic the tags used by active server pages to delineate code blocks. Asp-style tags are written in the following way: <% … %>. You must set the configuration option in your php.ini file if you want to use the ASP-style tags.
- HTML script tags
The HTML script tags are written as shown: <script language = “PHP”> … </script>
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- Commenting on a PHP code
The comments on your program are only for the human reader. They are stripped from your code when the output is displayed. If you want to make your PHP homework solution stand out, then you must be familiar with the two commenting formats accepted in PHP.
- Single-line comments
The single-line comments are effective for short explanations or notes that are relevant to the code. You can also print multiple lines in a single print statement using Multi-lines printing.
- Multi-lines comments
Multi-lines comments are used to provide pseudocode algorithms and detailed explanations wherever necessary. If you are well-versed in multi-lines commenting in C, then you are good to go. This is because the same style of commenting is used in PHP.
Universities and college professors who teach PHP in countries like the USA, the UK, Singapore, Australia and many more tend to award more marks to students who use comments in their codes. So do not hesitate to use any of these two commenting styles.
- PHP language is whitespace insensitive
A whitespace is anything that is invisible on the screen. Examples of whitespaces include tabs, spaces, and carriage returns (end of line characters). When we say that PHP is whitespace insensitive, we mean that it doesn’t care how many you have in a row. Using one whitespace character is the same as using as many such characters.
- PHP is case sensitive
This simply means that your program will not return your required output if you mix cases (Capital letters and small letters). You cannot define a variable in lowercase and call it in uppercase. For example, a variable $name =”Henry”; we can only use $name and not $NAME. However, please note that function names in PHP are case insensitive.
- PHP statements are expressions terminated by semicolons
Any expression in PHP that is followed by a semicolon (;) is called a statement. A sequence of these statements enclosed in PHP tags forms a valid PHP program.
- A combination of tokens forms expressions
Indivisible tokens such as numbers, strings, variables, constants and other special words like if, else for, while, etc. that make up the syntax of PHP itself are considered the building blocks of PHP.
- Blocks are made with braces
In PHP, you can put statements anywhere by enclosing them in a set of curly braces.
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