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Flash and PHP Bible Paperback – May 5 2008
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From the Back Cover
Quickly develop dynamic Flash applications with PHP
The demand for rich Internet applications (RIAs) such as complete storefronts and interactive surveys is skyrocketing, as is the pressure to create these dynamic apps overnight and at low cost. This in-depth Bible provides the step-by-step instructions you need to quickly create RIAs in Flash using cost-effective, open-source PHP programming tools. You'll learn how PHP works, when you should use it in Flash, and above all, vital security techniques for keeping your interactive sites secure.
Install, configure, and explore the basics of PHP
Connect Flash to PHP and PHP to MySQL
Create contact forms and search capabilities
Clean, store, and check your interactive data
Apply advanced security techniques
Develop an RSS reader or banner tracking with PHP
Extend Flash and PHP with third-party libraries
Learn best practices for backing up and updating your server
Companion Web Site
On the book's Web site you can see real-world examples of Flash applications and how they were developed. The Web site also includes all the source files associated with the examples. Visit www.wiley.com/go/flashandphpbible.
About the Author
Matthew Keefe is a new-media designer and developer with a strong background in application development for the Web as well as offline. He has worked with companies such as Delphi, PhotoshopCafe, and Organi Studios, to name a few. Examples of his work can be found on xm411.com (XM Satellite Radio Fan site).
Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I've waited for this book for a while, and I put off sharpening my PHP skills until I received it. I wish instead I had more experience building MySQL databases with PHP first. It's odd, there is some introduction to PHP and MySQL, but it doesn't really prep you enough if you're a newbie...
The title "Bible" is misleading; rather, it's more a cookbook. There is a lot of great info in here- lots of code and explanation of it, but the scope of the explanation is only how it pertains to the example given. For example, while explaining an example to output dynamic XML from a database, the author only focuses on the PHP script to retrieve the data, then parsing it into XML. I would have liked to have seen the XML as a file and how the MySQL database was structured. It would be repetitive, but that's what makes a good teaching book- or at least a "Bible" book.
The other drawback for Mac PHP newbs will be: the author does a good job of explaining installation of Apache and PHP on Windows and Unix, but NOT Mac. I contacted the author as he promptly replied:
"The reason for no OS X install notes was due to OS X shipping with a version of PHP which would cause issues without a large amount of editing and modifying.. which I felt was beyond the scope of the book."
He did tho, create a forum on his website for readers to post questions. He quickly replies. On this forum I posted a walkthrough (with pictures) on how to quickly get PHP and MySQL running on your mac.
On the whole, it's full of excellent code and various examples, but the scope is narrow and explanation is right to the point. Experienced users will welcome it, others may feel discouraged and have to look to other sources to fill in the gaps.
But the book has an absolutely unacceptable flaw. Many, many of the examples do not work. And be aware, the publisher and author have not taken the time to post any errata. So you are on your own in identifying and fixing the glitches you will encounter in many of the examples! It is very clear the book's publisher went to print without validating its contents (or maybe knew about the issues but published anway). It is also clear the author, Mathew Keefe, could not be bothered to check his own work. Otherwise, he could not have considered the book to be finished!
Here is just one example, in chapter 14 the author has a "Poll Application" example. Everything in the example should work, but the author seems to have apparently got tired of this one and did not complete the actionscript that is needed in his Flash for it to work. You can build the code following the book or download the code for this example from the publisher's site. Either way, you will see the author simply stopped before the example was done. There is no way the author could have thought they had finished the example. That is totally exexcusable.
I do agree with an earlier review that the title "Bible" would be better changed to "Cookbook" but having read the editorial review I already had the impression that's what it would be and was not disappointed.
Overall a very solid reference book with lots of useful examples and code that will fall into the "keep it handy" section of my bookshelf.
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