Building a Database-Driven Web Site Using PHP and MySQL
To attract new visitors and keep them coming back, websites need to offer fresh, up-to-date content. In the past, this meant creating lots of HTML pages. One problem with this approach is that the people providing the content for the site are not necessarily the site designers; they may not even be familiar with HTML. What's more, storing all that content in hundreds of individual HTML files makes it difficult to change the site design. Server-side includes can help, but they're limited, and you're still left with all those files to manage.
A database-driven site keeps the content separate from the site design. This allows content providers to enter information without doing any HTML coding. Instead of creating an HTML page for each piece of content, you only need to design one page for each type of content display.
In the first four parts of this ten-part series, you'll learn about the advantages of database-driven site design over static HTML, and get your feet wet with MySQL and PHP. The online parts of the series include Part 1: Installation, Part 2: Getting Started with MySQL, Part 3: Getting Started with PHP, and Part 4: Using PHP to Access a MySQL Database. The remaining six parts are available only in print, and are not free.