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Always ask - do I really understand this?

Key Features

Designed for beginners.
This book is designed for beginning programmers. Every concept is worked through one step at a time, using numerous and complete examples. Chapters preserve conceptual coherence and avoid overwhelming the student. Each end-of-chapter exercise is designed to test a specific concept.
Targeted to teach fundamentals of logic and design.
This textbook does not attempt to teach all the details of a programming language but rather keeps the focus on algorithm development, problem-solving and basic programming structures. By combining programming, markup and database languages, the book is designed to to serve students who will take subsequent courses in Computer Science, Web programming, Digital Media, Networking Technologies, Database Programming and related fields.
Minimal syntax.
By combining HTML with PHP and MySQL, students are able to focus separately on user interfaces (HTML and simple CSS style sheets) and data processing (PHP and MySQL). The overall simplicity of PHP syntax makes this language a perfect choice to learn fundamental programming concepts, and the language is similar enough to Java, C++, VB.NET and Python to prepare students for subsequent programming courses. MySQL is covered in a single chapter so this topic can be omitted if desired.
Relevant.
PHP, HTML and MySQL are widely used for dynamic Web development world-wide. Students appreciate the value of the skills they are learning. These technologies also provide a meaningful context for introducing important topics as client/server design, multi-tier applications, interconnectivity, global standards, and object-oriented programming.
Ease of use.
The required development software is freely available and can be downloaded from the textbook web site. Installation is a matter of unzipping a file - no special configuration is required. All course work can be performed with no need for Internet access, server-based solutions, or special accounts. Students can store their entire work environment on a portable disk, insert their disk into any computer and go to work!
Engaging.
The hands-on, example driven structure delivers an effective learning environment. Students are excited to have the chance to develop programs on the Web, an environment with which they are already familiar. They discover immediate personal benefit and this fosters an atmosphere of engagement in the classroom that I have not been able to achieve before. They also apply what they are learning in class to their own projects. I have never had so many students asking questions that begin "OK, so how do I..?"