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Wicked Cool PHP: Real-World Scripts That Solve Difficult Problems Paperback – Feb 16 2008


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 216 pages
  • Publisher: No Starch Press; 1 edition (Feb. 16 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1593271735
  • ISBN-13: 978-1593271732
  • Product Dimensions: 17.5 x 22.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 408 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #294,654 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents


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By drom99 TOP 500 REVIEWER on Dec 28 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Contains many useful plug-ins that can easily be integrated to any webpage. The explanations are decent and the examples show how each plugin works ... which helps in understanding the code.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 24 reviews
30 of 35 people found the following review helpful
A great resource for PHP programmers March 26 2008
By Jay Taylor - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I saw this book on a friends desk and shamelessly took it before he had a chance to read it. I have many php books on my bookshelf, too many. I can now remove quite a few and replace them with this book.

When I first glanced through this book, I was intrigued by the way it was laid out. There are 12 chapters covering many topics that php programmers should know about their language and how browsers interact with a web server using php. Each chapter has many sections that cover a specific topic and most have very useful code examples. The extra feature is a part labeled: "What can go Wrong?". This is a great time saver on how to deal with common issues that might come up when you are working on your php script and implementing the example code. Most of the issues have really good explanations of how and why something could go wrong. What makes this book a real keeper is that they have the "why" explanations. I've always hated it when books tell you to do something a certain way, but never go into any depth on WHY you should do it one way or another. This book has the WHY covered very well for a great number of the examples.

The style of the book makes it easy to read and learn from the examples. In my case, it makes it easy to pickup, read a few pages when I get the chance and then put it down again. I find it easy to pick up right where I left off and keep reading right on to the next example. I like the humor level too. Often authors can get a little too cutesy with their wit and humor. I find that to be a real turn off. William and Brian (The authors) do a great job of keeping the humor light and laughable.

I just made some room on my busy book shelf for this book of 76 time-saving, problem-solving php scripts. I hope my friend doesn't ask for it back...
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
good start.. March 21 2010
By Stephanie Wilkinson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book is a good start to learning some cool php scripts, but I found myself spending lots of time on google and other sites to actually get any of it to work. A few apis are used that are outdated, like yahoo and google maps. Additionally, the book has quite a few spelling errors and at times can be hard to follow (ie. what function goes in what file, when did the author break code into multiple files, etc. If you don't mind looking around online, this book gives you some neat ideas for cool php scripts.
26 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Become A PHP WaRRioR!!! March 19 2008
By Dan McKinnon - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
'Wicked Cool PHP: Real-World Scripts That Solve Difficult Problems' is a fantastic PHP cookbook that is written exactly the way I like books to be written:

- it's fun to read and learn from
- content is broken up logically at the right points
- layout and design is a joy on the eyes and brain
- length is around 200 pages which is within the 2-3 (hundred) range that I like most books to be

Content is broken up over 12 chapters:

01. Basic script stuff
02. Configuring PHP
03. PHP Security
04. Form Fun
05. Text & HTML
06. Dates
07. Files
08. User and Session Tracking
09. Email Excitement
10. Image Tasks
11. Using cURL to talk to web services
12. Other Stuff

The audience for this book hits the rare area of ALL developers from the expert to the newbie to the weekend hacker. There are 76 scripts contained within that nearly anyone could find useful in any project.

I love No Starch books because they don't feel like reference materials, rather they package it in a fun way from the glossy cover to smart design. No Starch gets 'it' when it comes to what geeks want and PHPites you will WANT this book!!

***** HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Great jump start into the world of PHP May 12 2009
By GJ Caesar - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I had a background in HTML/CSS and Actionscript but had never done much with PHP. I was looking for a book with simple, real world examples that would get me moving in the right direction. This was that book. After quickly digesting several of the short, well written chapters, I was able to do a few things that I wanted to do as well as several things I never dreamed of. This book gave me enough of a start that I now feel comfortable using the vast array of free PHP resources available on the web to continue my learning. This is a not a reference manual or a tome on PHP/MySQL application development, but it's a great entry into working with PHP.
12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Save your money March 23 2010
By knrd - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is probably the first time reviews on amazon completely failed me. if you have any coding experience at all, php or otherwise, move on. if you want proper syntax/style, move on. if you have access to [...] or even Google, do so as well. there is nothing in this book that you will not get for free on any random coding related site, except it being free, updated and better. now, if you don't mind paying for crappy content you may get something out of it if you haven't moved passed the "hello world" tutorial.

[edit] Two years later and they are still selling the original edition.

The author claims they don't focus on PHP basics, but rather they provide scripts that can be implemented. Yet a large portions are pretty much function descriptions pulled from php.net:

#4 is print_r();
#5 is serialize();
#8 is phpinfo();
#10 is error_reporting(E_ALL);
#11 is error_reporting(0);
#13 is upload_max_filesize
#14 is register_globals = off
#15 magic_quotes_gpc = 1
#16 open_basedir
#34 is substr()
#35 is strtolower(), strtoupper() and ucwords()

Then they have sections on creating an array from a form via input_field[] (#27), accessing named form buttons (spoiler, $_POST['name']) or how to check if a data is in the past (wicked cool solution #31). They even provide some impressive regular expressions for validating emails and phone numbers: The former accepts complete gibberish while the latter returns any phone number with 10 digits (or 11 with leading 1) as valid.

Wicked Cool PHP is part PHP manual and part embarrassingly simple "solutions". And then there's the plain bad style such as accessing a string literal array index without quotes ($row[product_name]) or claiming that there is no security issue with the $_REQUEST array (#25 - There has been some debate on how safe $_REQUEST is, but there shouldn't be. ).

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