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What is PHP?

For web designers who want to make pages that catch the eye and increase page views, PHP is a must. PHP, or hypertext preprocessor, is a server-side scripting language that is used to add special features to web pages. It is perhaps one of the most popular scripting languages used today that enhances the features of the more traditional HTML.

PHP is often referred as a server-side language, because the features of the script are executed on the server that produces the web page and not on your computer. This means that the page you receive on your computer has already been configured with special features of PHP and that you aren’t required to download special programs (for instance, like JavaScript) to read it.

What Are The Features Of PHP?

Using the serving-side language PHP can allow you to add special features to your web pages that can enhance the end user experience

  • Username and password login
  • Surveys
  • User forums
  • Forms
  • Photo galleries

The simplicity of PHP allows imbedding these and other features into their web pages with relative ease. PHP is a great way to get users and visitors fully engaged in your site.

What Are the Advantages of PHP?

PHP has several many advantages for the budding or professional web designer that wants to add a new dimension to their web pages.

  • It loads quickly
  • It is relatively stable and contains few bugs
  • It offers a high level of security
  • It can run on several platforms (Linux, Mac OS, UNIX, etc.)
  • It is simple to use, even for a beginner
  • It is available for free

The convenience of PHP makes it possible for almost any website, from blogs to news sites to e-commerce sites, to use the server-side language to enhance their pages and add the features that can bring new visitors to the site.

Things To Know Before Using PHP

Before using PHP to enhance your website there are several preparations you need to make to ease the use of the language. These aren’t extensive preparations, but a few simple actions that can make your use of PHP a bit easier.

  • You should have a basic understanding of HTML and XHTML
  • You should have knowledge of JavaScript
  • You should have access to a web server that supports PHP
  • You should install Apache or IIS and MySQL if you are using your own server

Preparing to use PHP is an important step in successfully integrating the language and getting the most out of it for your site. Whether it’s selecting a web provider that has extensive experience in PHP or preparing your own server to use the language, using PHP successfully requires a few simple preparations.

PHP can be a great asset to web developers and designers who want to give their pages a visual “pop” and add the features that savvy web users have come to expect. The ease of use and wide availability of PHP makes it a must-have for website owners who want to elevate their sites above the rest.

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