Wednesday, 26 August 2009

SMLP: Resource list for PHP/MySQL

I intend to explore the most important and commonly used applications of php by developing a website which will incorporate these applications.

This could include: Providing a content management system using MySQL, creating secure contact forms, image galleries, and navigation guides.

This will provide me with working practice and experience of PHP and also provide me with a showpiece website to add to my portfolio.

I intend to use online and textbook tutorial(s) to find out what applications to incorporate into the website and to learn how to write them. To this end I have looked at a number of books on php and have a personal preference for 'PHP Solutions'by David Powers.

My resource list will contain:

1: PHP version 5.3: Open source

2: Apache local server: Open source

3: MySQL: Open source

4: Microsoft Notepad

5: Online tutorials: eg:, WC3 tutorials,

6: Text book: PHP solutions, By David Powers.

7: XHTML and CSS

8: A sketchbook and Digital Imaging software will be used for the website design.

Friday, 21 August 2009

Self Managed Learning Plan: Proposal for PHP and MySQL

With a view to what my future aspirations are in terms working as web designer, I am keeping an open mind at the moment.

With the current downturn and lack of jobs I am planning on developing the most currently in-demand skills and being prepared to work as a web designer initially on a self employed basis just as a means of building up a portfolio, and also developing the necessary skills. After gaining some experience I hope to be able to work either in contracts or full time as an 'all round' web/graphic designer.

Having looked at the required skills on various online jobsites (such as totaljobs), the most commonly sought - after coding skills after html and css apears to be PHP. So it makes sense to me to develop a working knowledge of this language. As it is also an open-source language, it is widespread as web development tool and integated into the GNU project, so is likely to be around for some time.

Learning the fundamentals of php will also allow me to incorporate secure contact and booking forms into any websites I build whilst working on my own. Online purchasing and feedback forms are a common requirement of websites for small businesses and sole traders - which will be my most common source of work.

I will also learn MySQL as it works alongside php as a database management tool.

I am hopeful that with these 'core' skills I will be able to answer the requirements of most websites, and in the future may consider other coding skills such as 'Ruby on Rails' or Javascript but for now I will stick to the 'basics'.