Best books for a beginning programmer

by Bugud
27 replies
I'd like to learn a little bit more about programming for my websites. Especially PHP, MySQL and internet security.

So I wondered whether anyone knew some good recent books I should pick up that are good for learning about those 3 subjects. And if anyone knows any books on other programming languages I should learn (outside of HTML, XHTML and CSS) I'd love to hear that too.

Thanks in advance,
#beginning #books #programmer
  • Profile picture of the author Amigo
    Just go to Tizag Tutorials Their tutorials are very good and will help you a lot.

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    • Profile picture of the author March Meadow
      Amazon will be your best starting point. Books are such a personal thing in that what works for one is awful for the next person.

      Amazon reviews might help a little too. You'll get a feel for the consensus of opinion.

      Another great place to look and ask the question is This is for programmers but great for newbies, too.

      For PHP and mySQL, I got hold of Visual Blueprint PHP5 - you'll find it on Amazon.

      Good luck!
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      • Profile picture of the author krainboltgreene
        If you're looking to get into general web development, with something a little more expressive than PHP, you may want to look for Poignant Guide To Ruby by _why-the-lucky-stiff or Learn Python The Hard Way by Zed Shaw.

        Both books are 0-to-developer, and easy reads. LPTHW will teach you how to use the famous Python web frameworks, but you'll need to look at the Rails Tutorial for a Ruby web framework.
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  • Profile picture of the author ussher

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  • Profile picture of the author baokhau
    2 publishers have good programming ebooks : Apress and Wrox
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  • Profile picture of the author Ken Durham
    After a bit, you will realize that there is a difference between programming and coding.
    A good programmer will not let a simple thing such as a language he doesn't know, stop him.
    A programmer designs the program flow and the logic. Coding is a matter of finding what fits and applying it.
    Some "programming languages" are more complicated than others to make fit, but that still doesn't matter. Coders are a dime a dozen. Good programmers are an entirely different issue.

    But diving in and kicking things around is always a swift way to learn.
    This might be of interest: Learning PHP, MySQL, and JavaScript<b></b> Learning PHP, MySQL, and JavaScript:...

    Also search LAMP
    LAMP (software bundle) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    yes, I am....

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  • Profile picture of the author ngseosept
    I prefer to have an online tutorial, aside from brief, it is understandable unlike in books
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    • Profile picture of the author DEaFeYe
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      • Profile picture of the author maxmalini
        If you are looking to learn PHP/MySQL I would suggest going to the following site:

        PHP Tutorial

        They have a ton of tutorials from Beginner to Advanced, including working with databases.

        I highly suggest you check it out.

        - Max
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  • Profile picture of the author try_hard_samurai
    Be sure to check out your library before dropping the cash on a book. Also, you could probably just read some tech books in a book store anyway. That way you'll know the titles that are a true help to you.
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  • Profile picture of the author reutersindia
    If you use internet frequently then W3 school site is best for beginner. it is a online tutorial site. give best material for technical students.
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    • Profile picture of the author SUPER Louie
      Originally Posted by reutersindia View Post

      If you use internet frequently then W3 school site is best for beginner. it is a online tutorial site. give best material for technical students.
      Ditto on that. I learned a lot from that site when I didn't understand my college professor
      A superhero is someone who knows how to be quiet, shed a tear for a moment, then pick up his sword, and fight again!
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  • Profile picture of the author upendraets
    Just Download PDF book and also learn with online tutor.
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  • Profile picture of the author olakh
    Beginning PHP and MySQL: From Novice to Professional, Fourth Edition
    By W. J. Gilmore
    is the best book for beginners.
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  • Profile picture of the author rosesmark
    I also want some PHP and HTML PDF file.If some one have then shared me
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  • Profile picture of the author luluxiu
    Programmers design process flow and logic. Code to find what fits, and its application problems. Some "programming language" is more complex than others to make for, but still does not matter. Encoder is a dime a dozen...
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  • Profile picture of the author Workman
    Oh man, this question is probably one of my favorite ones over at StackOverflow. Definitely check out the top answer over here: List of freely available programming books

    The list covers most major programming languages and some lesser known ones too. If you want to jump into something new and don't want to invest in a O'Reilly book or something else that actually costs money, this would be my first stop. Some of them are even under open-source licenses.

    Also be sure to check the related questions on the right-hand side as well. And if you've got some extra time to kill, check out this related and interesting question:
    What is the single most influential book every programmer should read?
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  • Profile picture of the author SarahPerez10
    Wrox provides the best programming books for any language.
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    • Profile picture of the author freehugs
      +1 To what krainboltgreene said. Zed Shaw just released an updated version of Learn Python The Hard Way, and it's a great resource.

      Also I would like to add that MIT has a free online program called Open Courseware. Go to their website and take the course 'Introduction to Computer Science and Programming'. It will teach you all the basic building blocks of programming through video lectures and exercises that you do on your own. The course uses Python (they tell you why in the first lecture), but the skills are transferable to other languages, and it will make you a better PHP programmer in the long run to start with a solid foundation rather than learn bad habits off the bat...

      Good luck in your endeavors!
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  • Profile picture of the author sickboy
    Bugud, listen to ussher recommendation. This is a really useful book!
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  • Profile picture of the author bocceman
    Just go to Tizag Tutorials Their tutorials are very good and will help you a lot.
    Agreed. Excellent site for beginners. I have read dozens of PHP books, both structured and OOP. Go to Barnes and Noble's website and buy the one with the best reviews.

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    • Profile picture of the author MagicMonkey
      I have found a couple of good PDFs on this site:
      www dot

      In particular I found the following book to be fantastic and used it to devlelop my fist PHP application.
      www dot


      (Sorry can't post links yet...)
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  • Profile picture of the author dutchguy
    For getting up and running with PHP quickly use very easy to understand and teaches the basics very quickly
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  • Profile picture of the author christiehemme
    w3schools is the best way for beginners.

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  • Profile picture of the author sandebdavid
    Hey have you heard of the "Head First" programming books ie. Head First Java, Head First XHTML, Head First Design Patterns etc.. They are the best for beginners. They make the learning so easy and fun that makes you not only understand well the programming concepts but also motivate and love programming. I have read the "Wrox" books but i find them overlay boring and need a lot of concentration unlike the "Head First" books..
    "For everyone somewhere there is a piece of heaven on earth"
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  • Profile picture of the author atikbabu
    For beginners w3school is the best learning place.
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