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on December 26, 2009
This is an excellent reference manual for PHP. I've meddled with PHP a bit in the past, but now after going through the book, I feel a lot more confident about my ability to use PHP and know that if I'm stuck there will likely be a recipe in the book that will help me out. The book, like all the O'Reilly cookbooks, is organized into problems and solutions, which are clustered into topic chapter, such as Web Basics, Database Access, et cetera. I read it front to back because from past experience I've found that doing this lets me stumble across new information I wouldn't have, and this book was no exception.

The book had well thought out examples and often showed multiple ways to solve the same problem (and commentary on the pros/cons of the various approaches). I bookmarked a dozen or more pages with recipes I want to try out to improve aspects of my website.
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on March 16, 2010
Fantastic book for advanced users, even for beginners. Lots of realistic examples. Became my new very well detailed PHP reference book. I love it. !00% recommended !
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on November 17, 2014
In my opinion, the best way to learn is look at examples and this book delivers them in droves. It's well organized by problem domain, and you can quickly look up a "best practices" way to do something and adapt it to your own needs. A lot of information is packed into this book so it makes a great reference as well. Google isn't always the best resource when you're looking for the right way to do something, so this book can be a big help.

Note: This review is for the second edition.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon December 28, 2011
Contains many useful code and examples that can easily be integrated to any web page. The explanations are decent and the examples show how each code works ... which helps in the understanding.
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