There are varying reasons behind one’s choice of becoming a computer programmer. There are those that simply have the skills, others are just very eager to learn more about computers, while of course, those that want to earn big. These varying reasons led to the continuous demand for computer programmers which eventually made such career to be easily attained through convenient yet beneficial online computer programming courses. Why are these courses beneficial? Just like any traditional computer programming courses, these as well cater to essential learning and exposures that definitely develop one’s skills and experience. These courses as well pave way for effective yet convenient learning mainly because these are known for being flexible. Students are given the freedom to choose their own schedule and still cater to other priorities such as other work, studies, family, and even leisure. These courses are options that people with interest in computers should definitely consider.
Arrays are what tables are to C-based programming languages and what databases are for SQL-based languages. Arrays or tables as they are sometimes called can be used to store the contents of several variables and to create one, you use the following syntax:
The array in the syntax refers to the name of the array being created, the key is the index which is set automatically to a numeric character or string if none is specified. Value is the assigned value or content of the said array which can be seen easily in the following array creation example:
This piece of code would produce an output of :
Array ( => Comedy  => Horror  => Action)
More on array functions in the next posts.
One of the great things about PHP, and other programming languages for that matter, is that it comes with built-in functions. While you can always hard code your way through any problem, using built-in functions will shorten your code and cut the time and effort you need to finish any project significantly. This will give you more time on your hands to engage in other productive activities like checking your FOREX investments or going on a date with your partner.
One easy example where in built-in functions will help you shorten your work is the use of array chunk functions. While you may always convert a string into an array by iterating on string characters, you don’t have to do that at all since there are PHP functions designed to specifically do that for you.
So use built-in functions if you want to be a more efficient programmer.
One of the weaknesses of PHP is that it isn’t doesn’t perform to well when used to develop computationally intensive tasks. Sure, its great for even the most complex of web applications, but is often skipped over in preference of another language for when it comes to computing.
An extension for PHP called QB, remedies this problem “by translating Zend opcodes and executing them through a statically typed virtual machine” resulting in a significant gain in performance even for complex tasks such as pixel-level image manipulation.
If you are new to PHP though, barely understanding the array chunk function, dabbling with PHP+QB is not advised and would be akin to handing your platinum credit card over to a teenager for use; perfect recipe for a disaster. Advanced programmers could benefit from this though it is recommended that you have a pretty fast system once you start compiling since compiling QB from source code is quite memory extensive, requiring at least 2 gigabytes of memory.
The want of becoming of a programmer all starts with taking introductory classes that cater to the study of basics in programming. These classes should help one develop two important aspects namely logic and discrete Mathematics which are essential in any programming career. The next thing to be done is understand other aspects of programming which includes its involved database, system, and languages. This should be done mainly because through understanding those things, one can identify which type of programming is fit for him or her which is actually the next step. There are varying types of programmers and these include desktop application programmer which focuses on operating systems, system programmer which deals with drivers and software, and web programmer. Lastly, when one is assured of what to pursue, one can then focus on learning the details of that chosen specialization which includes technologies and programming languages to be used.
Learning computer programming requires two important aspects namely time and effort. It is a must that before even trying to learn the basic codes, one has that willingness to sacrifice time and other priorities. This is the case because computer programming is never easy to learn. Every code has varying use, result, and applications which should be understood in detail by any programmer. Effort and initiative, on the other hand, are the secrets to one being successful in this field. These are needed since learning and mastering computer programming is a long procedure that involves the need of much practice. Practicing is not required from for instance, a professor or a school. This will only be possible if one has the initiative. It is important to known that, learning computer programming is possible to anyone even those that have the least knowledge on computers. One should simply have that willingness to sacrifice time, effort, and initiative. Success will definitely follow.
Computer programming is known for its immeasurable contribution to the online community and to the world of technologies. Users are highly dependent to such programming because it caters to several usages that appear to be of great benefit. Taking all those benefits and advantages aside, it is as well important for every user to be aware of the disadvantages that go with computer programming. First downside focuses on the increasing forms of viruses. As we all know, programmers are responsible for varying websites, systems, and programs. These are all products of their effort and definitely took much time to finish but due to prevalent viruses, these works at one instant can be infected and destroyed. Another is that computer programming must always be perfect. This pertains to the need of having completely correct codes and executing the procedure perfectly. This is important because a simple mistake or one missing code can lead to system errors and even breakdown.
The PHP development team announced 3 releases earlier this month, including the latest beta version of PHP 5.5.0. Aside fom PHP 5.5 beta 3, the other versions released this month are the PHP 5.3.24 and the PHP 5.4.14.
The PHP development team urges programmers to upgrade to the 5.4.14 version since it not only contains fixes to critical bugs, but also comes with an upgraded PCRE library. It should also be noted that while the 5.5 version is the latest version, those new to PHP programming are discouraged from using the version since it is still in beta and still contains many bugs that need to be fixed. Even experienced programmers are advised not to use the 5.5 version for projects that will go into production, unless you are ready to gamble your financial interest in your commercial project with a buggy program. If interested in trying out the beta version though it might also be wise to just wait for the next beta release of PHP 5.5.0 since it is expected to come out just a few days away on April 25.
You might be wondering why anyone would want to test their PHP code online when you can very well just run it on your own computer. Well, the fact is that there are instances when you might find yourself without your trusty PC and unable to install anything on the current computer you are using due to limited administrative rights. When this happens, and you need to test a code you wrote, you have at least know that you have the choice of testing your code online.
Some recommended sites for testing PHP code online include the following:
You can either type the code directly on the browser or type it in your text editor and copy paste it on any of the sites above. They are free and will check your code for common errors. Best of all, you can surf the internet during idle moments and do just about anything from posting on your Facebook account to checking you financial accounts.
Image via CodeRun
PHP programming is definitely not all about the coding. This is actually for programming in all kinds of languages. It is also true for any kind of PHP application you may be working on, be it a PHP-based software asset management tool, a PHP-based website, or any other software.
Of course, when programming knowing coding best practices is essential, but having an in-depth knowledge of testing tools is equally important. For PHP testing frameworks used fall under different kinds of testing such as unit testing, integration testing, functional testing, behavior-driven development tools, and generic frameworks.
Each testing tool is obviously suitable for difference scenarios although they all serve the same purpose of decreasing dependence on manual testing. This makes the testing phase go more efficiently and save a lot of resources not only in terms of time but also in manpower, with less testers needed.
As a PHP programmer, make sure you brush up on your knowledge about automated testing skills and you’ll be the one who will benefit from it in the end.
Image via SimpleTest