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    Taking PHP Website to the next level


    Hi,

    I have basic php skills and im also starting to learn the OOP side of things. I have some ideas for a project of developing a site in php to help improve my knowledge of PHP.

    One of the things i am very interested in is more dynamic sites, like for example Atlassian Jira bug system recently started allowing you to edit individually fields simply by hovering over them and they turn into editable fields, Gmail recently offered an option that adds a dropdown to a calendar invite so you can say yes directly without having to open it.

    Those are what i would call non standard website features but i have some ideas that i think would work well with these type of features. Like being able to right click and instead of getting a standard windows menu with copy/paste etc, almost making it like an application rather than a webpage. Things like dragging and dropping things. These would be all ideal things for my project since i want it feel more like an application than a webpage.

    I know people will say this goes against normal practices and if you want an app build and app but i think for my project at least there is value in it.

    So my question is, if i wanted to do this type of thing within an application, that does stuff that PHP normally isnt designed to do, what would be the best language keeping in mind i would like to keep to something mainstream so there is lots of tutorials and help available. I still want to use PHP for the main design but want to use and additional language or possible two to do stuff like i mentioned above that PHP cant do or at least cant do easily.

    I know its a bit of a general question, i would really appreciate if you could refer to some sites as examples for features that are designed in a specific language. What i have found difficult when googling was finding examples of what java, python etc can actually do, would be great if someone knows a resource that points to features on websites designed with different languages to give me an idea of its capabilities.

    p.s i plan on learning more on php frameworks yet, i dont really know a whole lot about them but from what i skimmed over it sounds like there just a big collection of useful functions rather than something that could extend the capabilities of php to do some of the things im looking to do.
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    Every feature you mentioned is a user-facing or client-side feature, so I suppose you should bone up on javascript, CSS, HTML5 and related client-side technologies. But since you're essentially asking nonsensical questions like "can PHP create a drag-and-drop user interface" my guess is you aren't ready for this project yet.

    Any commonly-used server-side stack can underpin an application with those kinds of features. How well it works is largely up to you as an architect and developer, how well you understand that stack's performance, configuration, language, etc. It doesn't matter how much experience you have with the PHP+Apache stack, when it comes to delivering these sorts of features over the web you will first need to be able to create the user interface in a web browser, and that has very little to do with your server-side technology.
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    As mentioned this is primarily going to be client side using HTML5 or Javascript. HTML5 is still being adopted so Javascript is the safer bet, so maybe look towards jQuery/jQueryUI as a starting point.

    PHP-wise the only consideration is that these sorts of behaviors often involve small updates to data, whereas a conventional form might update a lot of data at once. Dragging and dropping an item from one box to another, for example, would kick off some AJAX within Javascript, telling your PHP to update a small piece of that item's data--such as its category, location, or whatever the different boxes represent.

    If you're looking at an MVC structure for your OO programming then, in those terms, it's the controllers that would change the most to accommodate the kind of visual behaviors you're describing.
    LinkedIn: Dave Mittner

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