By Graeme Merral : Open source has brought a lot more than Linux to the computing world. It has also given us PHP and MySQL. According to Graeme, PHP and MySQL are the world’s best combination for creating data-driven sites. In the first installment of this three-lesson tutorial, our Kiwi guide covers everything you need to know to begin developing database hubs. He gives instructions for installation on both Unix and Windows, and then goes on to show some simple scripts that will insert information into a database and display that data on a Web page.

Lesson 2 covers more PHP/MySQL goodies than you could probably imagine. Graeme starts by showing while loops, then talks about the ever-useful if-else statement. But this information alone means little if you don’t continue and see how PHP can be used with HTML forms. By the time you’ve polished off this lesson, you’ll be able to add, edit, and remove information from your database.

In Lesson 3, Graeme shows some of the secrets that will turn your simple data-driven site into a useful application. As he covers validation, he’ll show how to prevent users from leaving key form fields blank and how to make sure numeric files don’t contain letters. He’ll also teach you how PHP handles includes and functions. Plus you’ll see how these two features, when deployed together, can make the coder’s life much easier. Graeme winds it all up with some tearful parting words and a bit of advice for the aspiring PHP/MySQL coder.

Lesson 1

Installation, basic scripts

Lesson 2

PHP and HTML forms

Lesson 3

Advanced tips

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