[thelist] Recommend a Server Side Language?

John Corry webshot at neoncowboy.com
Tue Apr 10 00:55:40 CDT 2001

> I've [...]taught myself
> some CSS and
> some Javascript.

yeah..me too, just barely.>

> I'm now looking for a simple, widely used server side language
> which is easy
> to learn.  All I want to do is be able to process some forms, maybe do a
> simple auction etc.

Note: I have no had any exposure to ColdFusion, but since it is a Macromedia
product (now) I would expect that it gets a lot of resources directed to it
in the recent future.

I wouldn't really know where to start with an auction (I guess diagramming
everything that happens in the client/server transactions...sort of a flow
chart...I guess)...but I have recently started working with PHP/MySQL and am
making fast progress. Some good reasons to consider this option are:
1) its usually cheaper, both for hosting and development tools
2) MySQL is the database engine...it is fast, efficient and scalable (not to
mention cheap)
3) It's open source, the support community is HUGELY supportive
4) It's really cool and readable
5) you will eventually have to learn how to program anyway...so why not just
start with a programming language (CF gurus...please take no offense).

'I'm reading MySQL/PHP Database Applications' by Jay Greenspan and Brad
Bulger (killer job btw Jay!)...it is probably the best PHP/MySQL book I've
read, and that includes a lot of books. I would say definitely don't bother
with 'Core PHP Programming' (unless the recent edition is better than mine)
and be prepared for a steep learning curve if you go with Wrox's 'PHP
Programming'. I have both of those and refer to them from time to time, but
think the first one I listed is by far the best. I notice that I spend way
more time reading the documentation at PHP [http://www.php.net/manual/en/]
and MySQL ][http://www.mysql.com/documentation/index.html] than anything
else I have, but books are good so I buy them anyway.

There are people here who know WAY more about this stuff than I do, but this
is working for me, so I have to mention it. A month ago, I'd never built any
DB driven stuff...and now after only 10 hours work, I have a whole section
of one of my sites that can be modified/renewed and added to via simple
Excel .csv files (URL coming as soon as I can transfer the domain to a PHP
enabled host).

I have a good friend who just built his first DB driven site using UltraDev
(also a MM product) to write ASP that works with an Access DB. He had a very
positive experience learning/doing that...so I guess its something to look
into too.


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