by Bruce Peren
PHP5 Power Programming starts by taking you through the basics of PHP including data types, control structures, loops and arrays. It then moves you swiftly onto polymorphism and object orientated programming or OOP. The next chapter introduces you to writing PHP applications for the web including writing cookies, uploading files and handling user input.
There is a great section on MySQL and the new functionality of SQLite which is introduced with PHP5 which allows you to use an internal file system like a database, it allows you to perform inserts, selects, updates and deletes and it also has some advanced features like Triggers which at the time of writing MySQL does not even have.
Chapter 7 deals with error handling, PEAR errors and exception handling. If you want to learn more about parsing, converting and communicating with XML then Chapter 8 is what you need to read as it covers all the aspects of using XML and PHP.
There are also sections on files, regular expressions, date handling and how to use the GD libraries to create graphs and dynamic images, there are also several chapters covering all aspects of using the PEAR package.
If you’re worried about making the move to PHP5 from PHP4 then there is also a chapter on how to successfully move and/or change your scripts to ensure compatibility between the two versions. The final two topics include getting the best performance out of your PHP code together with an introduction on how to write PHP extensions.
This PHP book is definitely for programmers who have a good understanding of PHP already. This book is not for beginners, I recommend beginners need to learn the basics of PHP coding first with a good introductory PHP programming book.
If you want to learn about any of the aspects of PHP that have been mentioned in this review such as XML, PEAR, SQLite or PHP Optimisation then this book is a good read and it covers some advanced topics that have not been covered before.
There are many PHP books out there that cover the same type of basic introductory PHP programming, but at last we now have a solid up to date book which takes PHP programming to the next advanced level.