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Q: HTML/PHP code ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   1 Comment )
Subject: HTML/PHP code
Category: Computers > Internet
Asked by: fieldlily-ga
List Price: $15.00
Posted: 13 May 2006 21:32 PDT
Expires: 12 Jun 2006 21:32 PDT
Question ID: 728595
I am looking at a site at It performs
something pretty simple, I think: when you click on MLA or APA, and
then on one of the links below it (like "Book," "Encyclopedia," etc.),
the right-hand side of the page loads a different form.

When I look at the source, I see that the links are enclosed in tags like this:

<a href=index.php?source=12>Book - One or More Authors</a></td>

I want to write a page with similar functionality. I know HTML, CSS,
and basic JavaScript, but not much else. I don't understand what "php"
means here. I am looking for an answer that either 1) tells me how to
write php code and link to it, if it's simple, or 2) refers me to
basic introduction to this kind of coding.

All comments are also welcomed. Thanks very much.

Subject: Re: HTML/PHP code
Answered By: sublime1-ga on 13 May 2006 23:33 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars

PHP isn't quite as simple as HTML, in that, with HTML, you can
author a page and put it up on any number of host sites that let
you create webpages for free. HTML is ubiquitous.

PHP authoring, however, is more appropriate for someone running
a website from a server over which they have some control, since
PHP needs to be installed as a program on the server. You can do
this easily enough if you're running your own server. Optionally,
you would need to find a hosting site which has PHP installed on
THEIR servers. Free sites don't offer this functionality.

Many websites utilize pre-written PHP, rather than authoring their
own. Many Bulletin Boards are written using PHP, and are installed
as an application, such as Invision Power Board:

PHP is defined via this Google search:


"PHP is a recursive acronym for 'PHP Hypertext Preprocessor'.
 It is an open source, interpretive, HTML centric, server
 side scripting language. PHP is especially suited for Web
 development and can be embedded into HTML pages."

Here's a manual on PHP, that includes sections on Getting
Started, Installation and Configuration, Language Reference,
Security, Features, Function Reference, and more:

And here's a basic tutorial in writing php, from the manual:

As you'll see, simple PHP can resemble simple HTML:


  <title>PHP Test</title>
 <?php echo '<p>Hello World</p>'; ?>


The difference is in the 'echo' function, which is interpreted
by the PHP program installed on the server, which then delivers
the appropriate results to the browser. There are numerous such
functions, called up by way of various tags in the PHP language.

PHP is thus ideal for creating database interactivity and dynamic
web content, while HTML is more for static pages.

I hope this satisfies your inquiry. If not, feel free to ask
for clarification.


Additional information may be found from an exploration of
the links resulting from the Google searches outlined below.

Searches done, via Google:

PHP tutorial

fieldlily-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars
Bummer. :) I don't control my server. Thanks for your high-quality research.

Subject: Re: HTML/PHP code
From: sublime1-ga on 15 May 2006 12:43 PDT
Thanks very much for the 5 stars!

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