At the time I was less interested in PHP than I was interested in reading the manual to my printer, but I was charged by a buddy of mine to learn it. He had taught himself what he needed to know in order to build his site, which was by and large much more than I knew. The entry into PHP was indeed a pain, lots of functions to call and very little known about how or why web applications worked, but it was clear to me that I was going to do well after I made my first blog for swallowbush.com.
It is a very simple idea – Create a system that would allow me to login, use an html form to submit my information, and then have that information output to the page of my site that I choose. My first steps into PHPdom were absolutely terrible. I made my first blog out of a text file, and when things got crazy, large posts or if I put a new line into the form before submitting, everything went to shit. It was, however, a really good learning experience. Using PHP to build pages that I had been using raw HTML to take care of previously was incredibly relieving, and for what it was worth, I was stuck. I wrote just about every web app I could dream up in PHP and would rarely take longer than three or four days. I worked around the clock and was having a terrible time with it; this was mainly because while I was learning PHP I was also in school, and working full time. I faired pretty well but it was quickly clear to me that I needed to get rid of the load, and devote some time to things as they needed to be done.
I began learning C in early 2001, cracking books and actually coding, getting very close to nowhere. I started schooling for it and started moving in the right direction, eventually increasing my understanding of how computers are our slaves and only do what we tell them to. By the time I undertook PHP I was already through every c programming class that my school had. Programming PHP was less about learning programming than learning the syntax, and its syntax was based on C.
Programming in PHP was difficult to get used to. Its dynamically typed and loose on the strictness that I was used to, not to mention the fact that it was an interpreted language, meaning it doesn’t get compiled into an executable. I adapted to the PHP language fairly easily, having a programming background was definitely beneficial, opening doors and what not. I had a few issues still, because I was coding PHP like a C programmer and it was causing many issues. Regardless I began building websites in PHP & HTML in the fall of 2003, and it was pretty well paying.