An IT Manager's Take on PHP Page 3

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By Tobias Ratschiller


PHP scripts are often embedded in the HTML code of page, and then get parsed on the server-side - the browser seessonly plain HTML. Thus, a typical Hello-World script looks like this:


<html>s<? print("Hello World!");?> </html>

This is the method that novice developers find theseasiest to work with. Larger and more complex applications usually gosother routes, to enforce a cleaner separation of layout andsapplication logic. When embedding the script directly in HTML,saverage, HTML-literate Web designers cannot easily edit the contentssof the page without being familiar with the scripting language used.sPHP offers a variety of libraries to work with page templates, whichssolves this problem and introduces an efficient development methodologysand simplify maintenance. This way, developers focus on thesapplication logic, and designers can change the layout of a dynamicspage without involving the developer or interfering with the programslogic. This translates into faster application development, and makessmaintenance tasks easier by dividing them into content and logicstasks, which can then be handled by separate team members.s


PHP needs not be used for Web development exclusively. It can also be compiled as a stand-alone script interpreter, and it handles simple system administration tasks as well. For example,sdaily statistics can be sent from an e-commerce application using a small PHP script. In version 4.0, the language core engine, the Zend parser, has been abstracted enough to be embeddable in other technologies. Rumors has it that it is planned to integrate PHP as stored procedure language into the popular MySQL database system. Seeing the dynamic evolution of PHP, it is only logical to expect the language to grow into other scenarios - why not use PHP as a macro processor in a word processor?

This article was originally published on Sep 7, 2000

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