PHP Pocket Reference and PHP Hacks Book Reviews

This is something that we haven’t done on the site in a while, so I thought we would do it again. A book review, and today we are going to be reviewing two books. Both are from O’Reilly, who if you have been a programmer for a while, is very popular for their programming based book series. The title’s of the books we are going to be looking at today are PHP Pocket Reference by Rasmus Lerdorf, and PHP Hacks by Jack D. Herrington.

PHP Pocket Reference

You may remember the site reviewing MySQL Pocket Reference a while ago, and this book is very similar but deals with PHP. The book is a great tool if you need to reference a PHP function either to just see how the syntax should be written or as a refresher to what the function does. The book does very little in fully explaining how to code in PHP, but again that isn’t what the book is for either. It does give you some examples, but those are few, and they are very short. Don’t expect to pick up this book and learn PHP if you haven’t been introduced to any form of programming. As with most O’Reilly
Pocket Reference series, the book seems more like an abbreviated desktop reference, or something you would carry to a meeting. If you want to preview the book for yourself, you can do so at the books official site . For 9.99 (USD) is a fair price for the book, I still tend to use PHP’s online manual more often.

PHP Hacks

This book by Jack D. Herrington is very unique. It gives you one hundred “hacks” for PHP. Each hack is basically an example of how you can create PHP code, and it explains how the code works. Most of the code is based around they dynamic aspect of PHP, including code such as creating user login scripts, creating a theme selector, or create graphs using PHP. The book is very easy to read and to follow along with the code examples. I would really recommend this for beginners to PHP because it not only gives young developers ideas of what can be done with PHP, but also how to do it. The 29.95 price tag for the book is worth it. If you think you would rather preview the book, then head over to if official site.

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