Wicked Cool PHP

Real-World Scripts That Solve Difficult Problems
by William Steinmetz with Brian Ward

February 2008, 216 pp.
ISBN: 978-1-59327-173-2

Download Chapter 4: Working with Forms

Download the code from the book

PHP is an easy-to-use scripting language perfect for quickly creating the Web features you need. Once you know the basics of how the language works, wouldn't it be great to have a collection of useful scripts that solve those tricky problems and add interesting functionality to your site? We thought so, too.

Instead of starting at "Hello World," Wicked Cool PHP assumes that you're familiar with the language and jumps right into the good stuff. After you learn the FAQs of life—the most commonly wished for PHP scripts—you'll work your way through smart configuration options and the art of forms, all the way through to complex database-backed scripts.

Wicked Cool PHP contains a wide variety of scripts to process credit cards, check the validity of email addresses, template HTML, and serve dynamic images and text. The 76 easily implemented scripts will also teach you how to:

  • Send and receive email notifications
  • Track your visitors' behavior with cookies and sessions
  • Override PHP's default settings
  • Manipulate dates, images, and text on the fly
  • Harness SOAP and other web services
  • Create an online poll, ecard delivery system, and blog

But it's not all fun and games: Security is a big concern when programming any web application. So you'll learn how to encrypt your confidential data, safeguard your passwords, and prevent common cross-site-scripting attacks. And you'll learn how to customize all of the scripts to fit your own needs.

Dynamic web content doesn't have to be difficult. Learn the secrets of the craft from two experienced PHP developers with Wicked Cool PHP.


About the Author

William Steinmetz is the author of LAN Party: Hosting the Ultimate Frag Fest (Wiley) and co-author of Paint Shop Pro for Dummies (IDG). He is the webmaster and editor of StarCityGames.com, where traffic has quadrupled as a result of the changes he designed and implemented, all using PHP.

Brian Ward is the author of How Linux Works, The Book of VMware, and The Linux Problem Solver (all from No Starch Press).


Table of Contents

Introduction: The Basics

Chapter 1: The FAQs of Life
Chapter 2: Reconfiguring PHP to Do Your Bidding
Chapter 3: PHP Security
Chapter 4: Security Measures
Chapter 5: Working with Words and HTML
Chapter 6: Working with Dates
Chapter 7: Working with Files
Chapter 8: Tracking and Controlling Users
Chapter 9: Working with Email
Chapter 10: Working with Pictures
Chapter 11: Working with Web Pages
Chapter 12: Intermediate Tricks

View the detailed Table of Contents (PDF)

View the Index (PDF)

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Reviews

"Wicked Cool PHP is a wicked cool publication for rookie and novice PHP programmers. If you're looking for a book that's less theory and more straight-to-the-point code, Wicked Cool PHP belongs on your bookshelf."
—DZone (Read More)

"As a language, PHP has its particular strengths and weaknesses. The Steinmetz and Ward book excels at presenting scripts that highlight the strengths and help you avoid the weaknesses. If you're interested in PHP, then get a copy of Wicked Cool PHP."
—Linux Magazine (Read More)

"If I had to recommend just one PHP book, it would be No Starch Press's Wicked Cool PHP. I find No Starch books to be both informative and enjoyable reads, and this book is no exception."
—Developer Connection (Read More)

"I have many PHP books on my bookshelf. I can now remove quite a few and replace them with this book."
—Jay Taylor, Twin Cities Asterisk Users Group (Read More)

Wicked Cool PHP "is very readable and the selection of recipes is very practical. If you are looking for a book of mostly short but very elegant examples this might be what you need."
—I-Programmer (Read More)

"I give the book a 5 out of 5 because not only is it a good learning tool but becomes a great reference book."
—/home/nick (Read More)

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