PHP Best Practices: Some Helpful Hints for Beginners

PHP is a very interesting field offering many options and scope for growth. Following article basically highlights the best practices that give some hints to the beginners regarding how they can work with PHP to make the most of the technology.

PHP is probably the most popular language used in website development today. As more and more people begin to understand the value of PHP, the demand for PHP development too is soaring at a higher sky. If you are a newbie in the PHP world, you may find the following tips very helpful.

Pay heed to the Manual

We did not really study that hard as kids. Always believing that practical knowledge pays off much better than the theories. However, the PHP manual proves otherwise. If you really want to do a good job with PHP, whether for yourself or even for a client, never slight the manual. Pay a lot of attentive reading time to the manual, and you will see how your life becomes much easier.

Every time you hit a block, instead of hitting the panic button, try reaching the manual. Not only will you find the answer to your problems, but there is a fair chance that you will end up learning more than you knew.

Error Reporting must be turned on

Somehow I really don’t understand why anyone would turn it off in the first place. The error reporting in PHP by default is always turned on. However, in case you turned it off earlier, now it the time you turn it back on. How do you suppose you can rectify an error if you do not even know what it is? Besides, why waste time looking for the problem, when you can easily be told and pinpointed towards it.

Integrated Development Environment for PHP

Integrated Environment Development or IDE is basically a set of very useful tools for any developer. IDE can help you with:

  • Syntax highlighting
  • Code completion
  • Error warnings
  • Refactoring (reworking)

And many other features. There are many great IDEs out there that support PHP.

Use lots of White spaces and Indentations

Breathe a little and flex your muscles. Now come back to the screen. Can you read your code? If you can’t, you are doing it wrong. Leave enough of white space and use a lot of indentations, to ascertain that your code is readable. If not by everyone at least by you. Nothing today really works on the static principal so you might have to redo it in the future. Ensure that you can read it properly so that the later job is much easier.

Make layers of your code

Making layers or ‘tiers’ of your applications is more like separating the various elements involved in your code into different segments. This basically facilitates in spotting exactly what you are looking for in the code structure easily. This too helps in later phase modifications.

Make the use of Object Oriented Programming, or OOP

Object-oriented programming (OOP) employs objects to denote fragments of the application. Not only is OOP a way to segment your code into distinct, rational units, it also decreases code recurrence and makes it much easier to alter in the future.

Double quotes and Single Quotes: use them the right way

Before you get to do anything else, get well accustomed with single and double quotes and their various functions. This thing basically depends on you so as to which one you are comfortable working with. Many developers prefer using the double quotes and many swear by the single quotes. I personally prefer the single quotes because they are very efficient and search escaped characters which double quotes do not do.

Author Bio:

Jack Sutton works with VITEB-UK  – bespoke website design company based in London. He likes to share his knowledge by researching on various topics relevant to his field and also writes about them when he gets time. You can find him write-ups on different guest blogging platforms.

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  1. Beginners may find it difficult to use PHP considering the many things that they still have to learn. Your hints should always be helpful to them.

  2. Learning PHP requires technical skills. This article is a useful guide for beginners. And you were able to explain and discuss PHP in a plain and comprehensive manner. 🙂