What is PHP?

what is the php scripting language?PHP is here in 2014 the most popular and used scripting language on the Internet. It got a large number of uses such as being able to create login forms,varify form details, running forms, image galleries, reading or writting data to your database and many other things. Often it’s used to give additional functionallity to a webpage or updating server side data. A good way to spot if a website is running a php script i to look at the URL. If it ends with .php such as www.mydomain.com/test-script.php then it’s very likely a php script you are running ofte embedded in an HTML page.

PHP is what you call a server-sided language. This means that all the code runs on the server and nothing are installed on your own computer (like with .exe files). It processes the data on the page and then display the results to you in your browser.

There is a bit of confusion about what PHP stands for, so far the most popular explanation would be that PHP stands for “Hypertext Pre-processor”. But if that was the case, why not just call it HPP? An alternative explanation to this would be that is is the initials from the earliest version of the program way back in the 80’s, when it was simply called Personal Home Page Tools. That would make a little more sense as why it’s called PHP.

If you are running your own website and needs more than graphics and text then you will almost certainly need to learn some kind of scripting language such as Perl, javascript or PHP. PHP is a very easy system to learn and you can do almost anything you need with it which is why it’s such as popular system. But just how powerful are this scripting language? Well PHP can perform any task that any CGI program can do. However its main strength lies in its compatibility with many different types of databases. In addition to this PHP can talk across networks using IMAP, SNMP, NNTP, POP3, or HTTP which means that you can easily pull data from other servers should you need so.

PHP was created early in 1994 by programmer Rasmus Lerdorf. During 1997, PHP development was being enhanced and improved by other contributors too which help it grow to the huge system it is today. Two of them, Zeev Suraski and Andi Gutmans, rewrote the parser from scratch to create PHP version 3 which all the later versions are based on. The latest version today is PHP 6.

A simple PHP print example could look something like this:

<title>Simple PHP Example</title>
<font color="black">The following text is made by PHP:</font>
print ("This is PHP text!");

What is a scripting language

scripting-languagesA scripting language is basically a high level programming language that is interpreted by another program at runtime rather than compiled by the computer’s processor as other programming languages for instance C++.
Often Scripting languages are embedded in HTML in order to add additional functionality to webpages such as adding dynamic styles or user interaction with the page. Many of these scripting languages are client side scripting languages which mean that they affect the data on the users end (usually through the webbrowser). But many scripting languages are running server side and are used to read, write or modify data like a server hosted database for instance. Most of these languages has grown due to the growing demand of the Internet users and with more and more users joining the Internet every year. If you are planning on running your own website and need additional functions beside displaying text and images you will most likely need to learn some kind of scriping language.
Some of the most popular scripting languages today are Perl, Javascript, ASP, PHP, JSP, Tlc and Python.
When it comes to scripting languages running on a server there are 2 different types. We got Javascript which is a client-side scripting language and we got a server side scripting language such as PHP.