Learning HTML, CSS, and PHP

I can’t tell you how often I find myself wishing I could design my own web pages.  Or even tweak things like WordPress templates.  It’s a skill that I’ve wanted to work on for a long time now.

I actually started digging into this almost a year ago, when my sister and her husband visited, although things have been busy and I have abandoned it for some time now. Christian is really into web programming, and is also quite patient when it comes to sharing his knowledge. He suggested checking out a couple of books to get started:

1.  CSS: The missing manual

2.  PHP and MySQL for Dynamic Web Sites

3.  Javascript and jquery

I’ve started with the first two, just working through the examples.  I don’t think of myself as a total tech dummy, but I have to admit – I have very little knowledge of the inner workings of websites.  It’s actually a lot of fun to go through these books and see what’s going on in the background – so complicated, but so logical.

A couple of other things to mention:  Although it would be pretty awesome, I can’t actually afford the Adobe Design and Web premium (even though it’s on massive discount for students – I will have to get it before I graduate!)  In the meantime, I’m happy to explore what my options are in the land of open source.  I found what seems to be a great alternative to Dreamweaver – it’s called Aptana, and it’s totally free!  It also directly links up to Firefox’s Firebug debugger, which is handy.  Of course, never having used Dreamweaver, it’s tough for me to give a fair comparison.  But it’s working just fine for me now.

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