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Get 50% of Web Developer Training in PHP and JavaScript!

July 10, 2015

learn web design by doing

Hi,

Get 50% off a 1 year subscription at webmentor.org!

Regular price: $99 – now only $50!

About the courses:

Webmentor.org has all the courses you need to become a web designer and developer. Quickly learn the languages of the web: HTML, CSS, JavaScript and PHP. And then build real-world apps like a shopping cart store that works with Paypal, build a full blown CMS from scratch and more.

Here is the coupon code: summerStart

Offers ends soon – take advantage!

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

Stefan Mischook
KillerSites.com

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Killerphp gets a much needed reskin.

July 6, 2015

Hi!

I just wanted to mention that we just launched the new killerphp.com skin. It had been a few years since we updated the look of the site, so it was about time.

In other news – I am still here! Just busy these days with projects, but will be back with new stuff soon. Meanwhile, if you are a programming noob, want to learn PHP or OOP … then check out the free courses.

Thanks!

Stefan
Killerphp

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Do you need advanced math to become a web developer?

March 18, 2015

Hi,

I got into a minor debate with a freshly minted nerd, who was barely out of school … and so, lacking in experience. He thought that knowing advanced math was a requirement to become a developer. Well, that is largely not the case in the real world of software development.

… At least that’s what my 20yrs of experience has taught me. Check out the video of me yapping about this:

Thanks!

Stefan Mischook
killerphp.com

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Why you should be teaching kids PHP, and not Python or Ruby

February 15, 2015

These days, Python and Ruby are popular programming languages with the tech startup crowd, and so, many of the venture capital backed ‘teach code’ startups, have ruby or python courses targeted at kids. The problem is, that these are not the best languages to teach programming with – especially in K12.

Why PHP is better?

In a nutshell:

1. PHP is easier to learn:

Python and Ruby are object oriented language at their core, so to do anything with the languages, you really have to understand object oriented theory and principles. This adds an unnecessary level of complexity to new learners.

Yes, modern software development is largely object oriented, but my 10+ years experience in teaching web development, has taught me that it is better to teach basic programming concepts and techniques before adding the OOP (object oriented programming) layer.

PHP has both an object oriented layer and a much less complex layer that is ideal for teaching programming to new learners – especially younger students.

2. With PHP, it’s easier do real things.

With PHP, because it was designed specifically for the web, you can create web apps fairly quickly. On top of that, getting PHP apps live is also trivial – just upload the files to a PHP enabled server, and you are done. Try that with Ruby or Python!

Ruby and Python were not designed with web apps in mind. They were put together more as general purpose languages and have been adapted for the web. Yes, they are both excellent languages, but there is that additional layer of complexity when it comes time to actually creating a web app and going live.

…. These days, if you are creating apps, they are most likely web apps! So this is relevant.

3. PHP is BY FAR the most used web development language – it’s not even close!

If you are looking to put practical skills into you students hands, then PHP is easily the best choice. Check out this simple stat: over 80% of dynamic websites, that is to say, websites that are also web apps, are created with PHP. Ruby and Python together may add up to 7%.

In fact, what I hear from new programmers time and time again (after they learn Python or Ruby,) they discover that they have to learn PHP, since there are so many more jobs in the PHP world.

Consider this next stat, WordPress runs about 23% of the world’s websites!! Add in Joomla and Drupal (two other popular CMS’) and we are probably close to 30% of the worlds websites being run by 3 web apps created with …. PHP!

.. There is no equivalent in the Ruby or Python world.

The point here is that there is a huge ecosystem in PHP that no other language comes close to. When selecting technologies, we all know from the Apple Appstore, that the ecosystem is hugely important. It’s a big reason why iPhone is so successful.

Conclusion

It seems clear, if you want to teach kids (adults too!) more easily and you want them to be able to easily see their code actually do something real, PHP is the obvious choice.

Add in the market viability of the language and the growing probability that Ruby will slowly fall into a micro niche (it’s already niche IMHO) … then there is really no argument. You can see why Studioweb teaches programming with PHP.

Final note:

I chose to teach programming with PHP in 2004, NOT because I was a PHP programmer zealot. I’ve written software in 8 or so languages, I am language agnostic. In fact, my favourite language for years was Java … I’ve written more lines of Java code than any other language.

No, I still chose PHP to teach programming, because it was the best choice.

I hope you find this helpful.

Stefan Mischook
studioweb.com

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Which Code Editor is Best for Teaching PHP?

February 15, 2015

There are soooooooo many choices out there these days when it comes to writing PHP code. Here are just a few popular apps:

  • Sublime Text – uber-nerds love this one!
  • Notepad++
  • Dreamweaver – yes, it has a code editor too.
  • jEdit

And there are many others, and I am not including the PHP IDE’s out there!

A PHP IDE (by the way,) is short for ‘Integrated Development Environment’. It is a code editor on steroids. They are much more powerful than standard code editors but they are also harder to learn. These days (2015) PHPStorm seems to one of the best, if not the best.

… The guys who created PHPStorm, created my favorite IDE for Java – IntelliJ IDEA. My nerd-servants are telling me PHPStorm is amazing. But, when teaching beginners how to program in PHP (or any other language,) it is best to not expose them to the added complexity of learning a full blown IDE. They can be very complex.

Back to code editors – so which is best?

In a nutshell: If I were teaching PHP, I would use either Sublime Text or Notepad++ if I was on Windows. Sublime Text works on both Mac and Windows but the license is ambiguous: it is free to demo but at some point you are supposed to pay the $70 for it. Not sure when though? I heard of some users still demoing it after 2 years!

This is a consideration for schools in terms of licensing. On the other hand, Notepad++ is free but it is Windows only.

Textwrangler is a Mac only HTML, CSS code editor but I don’t see you could use it for PHP.

Stefan Mischook
killerPHP.com

Creator of Studioweb.com

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Is PHP the redheaded stepchild of Web Development?

January 16, 2015

Hi,

In defense of poor old PHP! The language everyone loves to hate … but so many still uses!

Each language has its’ strengths and weaknesses. So the one you choose is largely a personal thing. That said, the stats don’t lie, most of the dynamic Web runs on PHP.

If any Ruby, Java or Python zealot fundamentalist attack, just mention that Facebook is PHP based. Game, set and match.

:)

Stef?

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Learn PHP with Stefan

January 6, 2015

Hi,

After a long delay (I wanted to get it right) my new subscription based training site is up and running – check out webmentor.org

Why join webmentor?

All my new videos will be there, you can ask questions right on the video pages, you have full access to the source files and my classic videos (that are still relevant) have been remastered in HD.

I’ve even written up a page on why learning PHP makes sense.

That’s all for now.

Stefan Mischook
killerPHP.com

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PHP programming in 2015

December 11, 2014

php logo

Hi,

The new year approaches and once again I will give you my assessment of where PHP will be in 2015. You might think me biased given killerphp is the name of the site … but you would be wrong. I am always ready to throw out a technology that no longer deserves my attention.

… That’s why I know 8-9 languages. And to be totally transparent, I’ve logged many more programming hours with Java than I have with PHP. That said, where goeth* our lovely PHP in 2015?

PHP in 2015

These days I hear the young nerdlings are all enamoured with Python. Yes, Python is a fine language and worthy of praise. But is it better than PHP? And what about the jobs – how much Python work is out there to be had?

Let’s start with the most important number: over 80% of dynamic sites run on PHP! Not Python, not Ruby. Nope, little old ugly PHP runs 80% of web apps in the world! From what I hear, web development firms have lots of PHP work but are finding it increasingly difficult to find PHP programmers.

… With scarcity comes higher prices.

PHP Frameworks are sooo 2015

Like all the mature languages out there, PHP has a nice selection of web frameworks to choose from, and ultimately, you as a budding web developer will have to learn at least one. In 2015 Code Igniter is out (although there are many legacy CodeIgniter apps that will have to be maintained) and Laravel is in.

… Anyway, once you learn one PHP web framework, learning another is not too hard. They are all MVC based and so they all work pretty much the same way. That said, some are better than others.

In a future article I will put my finger to the wind, and get into WHICH PHP framework is probably best in 2015.

Happy new year!

Stefan Mischook
KillerPHP.com

Goeth defined: archaic third person singular present of go.

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Which PHP Framework is best?

October 31, 2014

Hi!

I get asked a lot: which is the best PHP framework? Or, should I choose PHP framework A or should I should PHP framework B?

The short answer: it depends! See below for the deeper answer.

When considering a framework, besides checking out what the uber-nerds are talking about at the time, consider the current cutting-edge thinking about frameworks in general, and be sure your choice of a framework, is up-to-date in that regard.

The no-framework PHP framework

For example, the move these days, is towards the ‘no-framework framework’ style of framework – that’s a tongue-twister! Basically, the more advanced a framework is, the more open it is.

You should be able to drop in components as you need then from any source. So for instance, if you don’t like the ORM layer in a framework you happen to be using, you should be able to easily plugin some other ORM.

At the end of the day, learning one framework or another should not be considered the end of the path – you should expect to have to learn a new framework from time to time … as things mature. The good news is that once you’ve learned your first MVC framework, the rest will come pretty easily since they are all based on the same basic concepts and patterns.

So, choose whichever framework you feel like!

Stefan Mischook
KillerPHP.com

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What are PHP Web Frameworks?

October 25, 2014

Hi,

This is a video (see below) targeted at those who understand basic PHP and are ready to explore the web development world a little further. You see, when you get into PHP, you will also have to learn about the client-side frameworks out there, things like jQuery and Bootstrap.

… PHP afterall, is typically used to create dynamic web pages filled with HTML, HTML5, CSS, CSS3 and JavaScript. So that means you need to learn how to code in those languages as well. Fortunately if you know PHP, it shouldn’t be too hard to wrap your head around them.

What are Web Frameworks?

Think of a framework for a house, scaffolding … or cookie cutters! Web frameworks are just libraries of code (could be code in any language) that speed up the process of doing all kinds of common web design and development tasks.

Anyway, watch my video to learn more:

Thanks!
Stefan Mischook
killerPHP.com

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