Beginners Guide to Learning PHP Programming (Lesson 1)

PHP is one of the most powerful and most fun programming languages to learn. Famous websites created with PHP include Facebook, Wikipedia, Mailchimp, Web9 and many others.

Instead of teaching you about different parts of PHP programming like variables, loops, arrays, functions and so on I believe the best way to learn is by working on a project so you can see how all the pieces fit together.

We’re going to start right from the beginning so even if this is your first time programming this course is for you.

We’re going to create a PHP journal application which has the following features:-

  1. Home page
  2. Registration + login
  3. Dashboard
  4. Logout
  5. View profile
  6. Edit profile
  7. Create journal entry
  8. Edit journal entry
  9. Delete journal entry
  10. Reset password

These features form the foundation for nearly all web applications so when you have these skills you will be well on your way to becoming a professional programmer.

The application which we will create will be almost like your own little version of Twitter.

We will use the following technologies:-

  • HTML
  • CSS
  • PHP
  • MySQL
  • Javascript

Ready? Let’s go!

Setting up your development environment

PHP programming is written inside files which end with .php

First you need to set up a server on your desktop or laptop which will run your PHP files. You can easily set up a PHP development server called XAMPP on your computer by doing the following:-

  1. Visit
  2. Download the installer for your operating system – Windows, OS X or Linux
  3. Run the installer

You can watch the video below to guide you through the installation.

That’s it for this lesson!

In the next lesson we’ll start using our new development server to build our PHP journal application.

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