Head First PHP & MySQL

  • ISBN13: 9780596006303
  • Condition: USED – VERY GOOD
  • Notes:

Product Description
If you’re ready to create web pages more complex than those you can build with HTML and CSS, Head First PHP & MySQL is the ultimate learning guide to building dynamic, database-driven websites using PHP and MySQL. Packed with real-world examples, this book teaches you all the essentials of server-side programming, from the fundamentals of PHP and MySQL coding to advanced topics such as form validation, session IDs, cookies, database queries and joins, file I/O opera… More >>

Head First PHP & MySQL


  1. The reason I bought this book was because I breezed through the Head First HTML with CSS & XHTML in less than a week and found it to be a superb tutorial. I soon found out that NOT ALL HEAD FIRST BOOKS ARE NOT CREATED EQUAL however. Head First PHP & MySQL has a horrible format for training someone. You’re reading along and it’s telling you about various concepts and you’re thinking ok, am I supposed to code this now? But instead of spelling out exactly how the code should be written in PHP they never get that detailed. They just keep using hypothetical labels, as if you’re having a conversation with someone who has no intention of actually making such a page. Then after covering about 5 new concepts they finally tell you to stop and create a page that displays this, moves that, inputs this, calculates that (as if you’ve been doing this long enough to already know all the details by memory). Even if you do manage to piece together what they want you to do, it always has errors because they intend for it to be that way! After agonizing for hours about what I could have done wrong, I finally just gave up and decided to read past it where I encountered “So… such and such didn’t work right? Here’s what you need to do to fix it,” followed by “better, but we still need to change blah blah blah for it to work,” followed by “we’re getting there, but you should have done blah blah blah,” each time telling you to upload the page and test it out again. You may get some general concepts or techniques out of just reading through the book, but don’t expect to be able to follow along and get any real hands-on experience.
    Rating: 1 / 5

  2. I’ve been a big fan of the Heads First series for a long time. The format of the Head First books is unique, engaging and effective. One could consider the Head First series to be comic book like. This is one of the series’ great virtues. The interactive layout and thoughtful way illustrations are integrated to text in order to explain ‘hard to get concepts’ really works.

    I use the series to learn and teach advanced programming topics. All the exciting things about the Heads First series shines through in PHP & MySQL.

    Heads First PHP & MySQL is for beginners. There is little prerequisite knowledge required to get benefit from the book. I have learned from years of teaching and mentoring that beginners learn best when presented with information in a way that is fun and hands on. Heads First PHP & MySQL meets this requirement with no problem.

    The book covers the range of topics that is standard for having a good foundation in programming in general and programming in PHP in particular. After finishing this book the reader will be able to create a data driven web site in PHP, leveraging that special relationship between the PHP programming language and the MySQL database. The reader will know why and how PHP and MySQL go hand in hand.

    The book throws in some extra tidbits. For example it teaches you how to make a data drive Rss Feed. It’s a good example that has real world bearing.

    Again, this is a beginners book. I caution ‘bosses’ that while giving this book to aspiring PHP developers is a good thing to do, you should not think that the book will create production ready coders. Coding in a production environment requires experience that is beyond the scope of this work.

    This being said, I look forward to reading an follow up volume to this work titled, Heads First Really Programming in PHP and MySQL in which the topics of object oriented programming in PHP and implementing the basic software design patterns are explained in a way that only a Heads First book could.

    Heads First PHP and MySQL is a great beginners book, one that should be on the bookshelf of every up and coming PHP developer.
    Rating: 5 / 5

  3. I have been trying to learn PHP and MySQL for a couple of months now. I have read (well, started) about 4 beginner’s books. I would understand a little bit of it, but then the more I got into a book, the more confused I would get. It just seemed like things were either coming at me too fast or the writing style didn’t flow, at which point I stopped learning. Not so with Head First PHP & MySQL. This book I absolutely cannot put down. The style makes learning so easy and fun that I just want to keep reading it. The funny thing is, the first time I saw a Head First book, I thought the layout would hinder my learning, not help it. Boy, was I wrong.

    Another great thing about this book is the flow. Most PHP and MySQL books start off with about 3-4 chapters of PHP, then 3-4 chapters of MySQL, then the rest of the book teaching you how to use the two programs together. But by the time I got to the chapters learning how to use them together, I had forgotten half the PHP from the first chapters! This book has you writing scripts using PHP AND MySQL in chapter two. but you don’t feel rushed.

    Let me close in describing who I think this book is good for, and who it isn’t. If you are three days away from a test in these two subjects, and just need to cram to pass the class and don’t care about learning, just passing, then get another book. There are books out there that have specific areas dedicated to each term (variable, array, etc) summed up on two pages. Once you learn something in this book, you will keep using it throughout the book, which is very helpful. I personally have to do things myself, more than once, to pick them up, and this book covers that perfectly, without making one second of this book boring.

    If you are looking for a specific PHP and MySQL reference to sit on your desk, and quickly look in the index, find a term, and use it, get another book. As the authors state, this is not a reference book. It is meant to be a learners book, read in sequence.

    If you know some HTML and CSS (didn’t seem to me like you even had to know very much), are completely new to PHP and programming in general, and want to learn in a way that allows you to retain what knowledge you pick up, BUY THIS BOOK! It is excellent. All the examples do a wonderful job of illustrating what you just went over in that chapter. Both writers are truly gifted, and have an excellent writing style. The layout is perfect. I can’t shower enough praise on this book. Brand new beginners to intermediate level programmers will all benefit from this book. Two thumbs way up!
    Rating: 5 / 5

  4. This book gets you writing database driven applications right from the start. The book makes learning PHP and MySQL interesting by getting you writing useful programs right away, adding the theory as you go. I can’t tell you how many books I’ve given up on just because they chose to tell you every possible PHP function and syntax variation before they even began to show you how all this is related to an actual database application. The Head First books are just plain fun. Get a few practical apps up and running, then go back to the reference books to learn the nuances of the language.
    Rating: 5 / 5

  5. Lynn Beighley and Michael Morrison’s HEAD FIRST PHP & MYSQL: A BRAIN-FRIENDLY GUIDE is also for web programming libraries catering to programmers: it shows how to take HTML web pages to the next level, building database-driven sites using PHP and MYSQL. Chapters cover the basics of building a range of applications, from video games to message boards, and from working with cookies to performing database queries.

    Rating: 5 / 5

Leave a comment