A Review of “PHP Programming Solutions”

I recently got the opportunity to be a tech reviewer for a book from McGraw-Hill by Vikram Vaswani (the CEO and founder of melonfire) titled PHP Programming Solutions. Needless to day, I’m a bit partial to it, but I still want to recommend it as a good, valuable addition to any developer’s library.

The book takes the “cookbook” approach rather than the how-to process of learning PHP. It assumes that you know a bit about what you’re doing, but are just looking for that helpful hint on that one chunk of code that’s evading you. It’s broken up into sections based on subject matter:

  • Working with Strings
  • Working with Numbers
  • Working with Dates and Times
  • Working with Arrays
  • Working with Functions and Classes
  • Working with Files and Directories
  • Working with HTML and Web Pages
  • Working with Databases
  • Working with XML
  • Working with Different File Formats and Network Protocols
  • Working with Exceptions and Other Miscellanea

As you can see, it just about leaves no stone unturned. One of my favorite parts about the book, though, was the way that it used what PEAR has to offer whenever it could. Several of the more complex examples revolve around the use of PEAR components (either on their own or linked together) to accomplish a goal. I think this approach is enough to set this book apart from some of the other “cookbook” style publications out there.

If you’re a PEAR developer, you’d do well to pick up a copy of this one and check it out. Even if you’re not, there’s some great tips in there that can help out in a pinch.

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