Andrew Bennett is Professor of Mathematics at Kansas State University.
Despite being based on C syntax, PHP is fairly easy to use. Part of the ease of use is because it is an interpreted language, i.e. you just type the code directly into the web page. You don't need to provide any headers or other control codes for your program -- you can include just a single line of code if you want. So, while PHP provides a full programming language, you can use as little of the language as you want. In addition, you update your program just by updating your web page. Since the output of PHP is just standard HTML, PHP works with any browser without any plug-ins. PHP provides easy hooks to access other programming languages, including the GD library for images and numerous database systems. You can also link to general processes running on the server -- though doing so can open security holes.
Published June, 2002
© 2002 by Andrew G. Bennett