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Computer Programming Basics  - Introduction to Computer Programming

Computer programming basics  -, introduction to computer programming, computer programming basics introduction to computer programming.

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Computer Programming Basics: Introduction to Computer Programming

Lesson 1: introduction to computer programming, introduction to programming.

Computer programming is the process of designing and writing computer programs . As a skill set, it includes a wide variety of different tasks and techniques, but our tutorials are not intended to teach you everything. Instead, they are meant to provide  basic, practical skills  to help you understand and write computer code that reflects things you see and use in the real world. 

A computer

What you need to know

Our computer programming tutorials assume that you have no programming experience whatsoever. They do, however, require basic familiarity with the use of computers and web browsers. For example, you should be comfortable downloading and opening files, and using text editing software. If you don't feel confident in those skills, consider spending some time with these tutorials first:

  • Computer Basics
  • Internet Basics

As long as you are comfortable with those basics, you should be prepared to begin learning programming. 

What these tutorials will cover

These tutorials focus on one particular type of programming:  web development . When you visit websites , whether you use a laptop, a smartphone, or anything else, you're actually looking at computer  code , which a web developer likely wrote, and which your web browser is interpreting to show you what you see on the screen. 

These tutorials will show you how to begin writing three common types of code used in web development, which combined make up the average website that you see every day: HTML , CSS , and JavaScript .

Parts of a website

Imagine that every website you visit is a person. Every person is different in how they look, act, and speak, but they're generally made up of  the same basic pieces.

If you imagine a website as a person, you can think of HTML as being the skeleton. 

A skeleton

HTML is at the center of almost everything you see on the Internet. While it doesn't look like much on its own, it forms the building blocks on top of which all the other pieces rest. The HTML for an extremely simple website might look something like this:

And if you loaded that in your browser, you'd see this:

Screenshot of a simple website

Try it yourself!

You can test some HTML yourself. Use this as a starting example:

Try entering that HTML in the input box below, then press the "View HTML" button. Make sure to  type it in exactly  as you see it.

You should see a button with the text you entered appear in the box above. It looks fairly plain, and it doesn't do anything yet, but you will learn about that later! 

Congratulations, you just wrote HTML!

If HTML is the skeleton, you can think of CSS as making up all the muscle, skin, and so on that make a person actually look like a person. 

A person

CSS doesn't do anything on its own. Instead, it takes plain HTML and styles it to look different . It can make what you see in the browser bigger or smaller, reorganize the pieces on the page, add colors, and more. Some CSS for an extremely simple website might look something like this:

If you were to apply the above CSS to the same extremely simple website you saw before, it would look like this:

Screenshot of a simple website with styling

You can test that CSS yourself. Use this as a starting example:

Try entering that snippet of CSS in the input box below, then press the "Update CSS" button. Make sure to  type it in exactly  as you see it.

You should see words in the box to the right become italicized. If you do, then congratulations! You just wrote CSS!

If HTML and CSS have combined to make a person that looks like a person, you can think of JavaScript as being the brain. Without it, a person just sits there, but with it, they are active and alive.

A person being active

JavaScript can change the HTML and CSS of a website in real time after it has loaded. It can hide things, add new things, change what things look like, and more. Any time something on a website changes while you are looking at it, there is a good chance that JavaScript is being used to do it. 

For example, imagine that you wanted the browser to create a pop-up greeting whenever somebody loaded the extremely simple website from before. One way would be to write some code that looks like this:

And when you loaded the website, you would see something like this:

Screenshot of a pop-up greeting on a simple website

You can test that JavaScript yourself. Use this code as an example:

Try entering that snippet of code in the input box below, then press the "Run Code" button. Make sure to type it in exactly as you see it.

You should see a pop-up just like in the example above, only with a different message. Congratulations, y ou just wrote JavaScript!

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Help Articles

Programming assignments, learner help center dec 5, 2022 • knowledge, article details.

Programming assignments require you to write and run a computer program to solve a problem.

Some programming assignments count toward your final course grade, while others are just for practice.

Sections of a programming assignment

Programming assignments include both assignment instructions and assignment parts.

Assignment instructions:

  • Explain the assignment.
  • May include a link to a downloadable starter package that includes starter code, detailed guidelines, and other resources.

Assignment parts:

  • Are similar to individual questions within a quiz.
  • Are each a single coding task.
  • Are each worth a certain number of points toward the overall assignment score.
  • Can be completed and submitted all at once, or one at a time.

Programming assignment grades

Programming assignments are graded automatically.

Some are graded using a built-in grading algorithm that compares your program's output to a value specified by your instructor. Others are graded using a custom grading algorithm created by your instructor.

If a programming assignment uses built-in grading:

  • Your code will run locally on your computer, and the output will be sent to Coursera's servers.
  • Your grade will be based on comparison against numeric or regular expression grading logic.
  • You'll get your grade a few seconds after submitting.

If a programming assignment uses custom grading:

  • Your code will be run on Coursera's servers.
  • Your grade will be based on custom logic provided by your instructor.
  • You'll get your grade within an hour of submitting.
  • You'll need to refresh the page to see your grade.

Submit a programming assignment

To submit a programming assignment:

  • Open the assignment page for the assignment you want to submit.
  • Read the assignment instructions and download any starter files.
  • Finish the coding tasks in your local coding environment. Check the starter files and instructions when you need to.
  • If the assignment uses script submission , submit your assignment by running the submission script in your local coding environment and entering the submission token.
  • If the assignment uses web submission , upload your files using the instructions on your screen.

Test a programming assignment

Some programming assignments let you test them before you submit them to get feedback on whether they run. You won't get grades or feedback from the instructor until you submit the assignment.

Edit or resubmit a programming assignment

You can resubmit a programming assignment if you don't pass on the first attempt or want to improve your score. You might have to wait a certain amount of time between attempts.

To resubmit a programming assignment, follow the same steps for submitting one. If your assignment uses script submission, you'll need to select the Generate new token option on the assignment page and use the new submission token.

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computer assignment programming language

How to Code – Coding for Beginners and How to Learn Programming for Free

These days, there are a lot resources out there for learning how to code. And many of them are readily available online for free – so choosing one can be overwhelming.

But there's definitely an upside: you don't need to attend a paid bootcamp or university anymore in order to learn how to code. You can teach yourself.

In this article, I will share some tips and info about how to learn to code for free as a beginner. I'll also point you to free learning platforms and resources.

What is Coding?

"Coding" is a commonly used term for computer programming. Some people use it interchangeably with programming, while others would argue they are not entirely the same.

By definition, "code" refers to a set of instructions that tells a computer what to do. Computers don't understand human language, so over time, humans have created languages that computers can understand. And developers speak to them through those languages.

Examples of coding languages include HTML, GitHub Markdown, CSS, JavaScript, and Python, among many others.

When you learn how to code, you'll be able to write instructions for computers to follow. This lets you make websites, applications, and software, and do some other cool stuff.

What is Programming?

If coding is the act of writing instructions for a computer to follow, what then is programming?

Many developers view programming as a more advanced term than coding, and a lot of others use both words interchangeably.

Programming still involves writing instructions for the computer to follow, but now data structures and algorithms are important. Some coding languages such as HTML, CSS, and Markdown don't use algorithms and data structures, while others such as JavaScript, Python, Java, and C++ use them heavily.

This brings up a distinction that many developers make. In the web development industry, many developers don't consider HTML to be a "programming language" in a strict sense, because it doesn't perform any logic. It just determines the structure of a website.

On the other hand, languages like JavaScript, Python, C++, and Java, are all "official" programming languages because they handle complex functionalities and interactivity.

Some developers refer to anyone who codes in just HTML and CSS as a coder, and those who code in JavaScript, Java, C++, and other programming languages as programmers.

So you could say that all programmers are coders, but not all coders are programmers. But not everyone feels this way, so it's important to do your own research and learn the skills before you take a side :)

You can read more about the distinction between programming and coding here .

Why Should You Learn How to Code?

The world is becoming a global village. And coding is a big reason it's happening.

There are tons of reasons why you should learn how to code, and I will touch on some of them here.

First of all, learning to code greatly enhances your analytical and problem-solving skills.

Your earning potential increases: there are senior developers who make $400,000 a year. So by learning how to code, you can live out your dreams and become financially secure.

You can work for the biggest tech companies: learning how to code open up doors for you to work at the biggest tech firms like Google, Amazon, Microsoft, and Facebook. If you're a fan of FAANG, you should definitely consider learning to code.

You can work independently: a lot of developers have years of experience in their respective industries and have never worked for any other person or company as an employee. By working for yourself, you work on your own schedule, at your own pace, and on your own terms.

How to Learn How to Code for Free

As I pointed out earlier, there are tons of resources online for learning how to code. You can find any resource you want by searching on Google, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Learn to Code on YouTube

youtube-1

YouTube has often been described as a free "university". A lot of people have become software engineers, web developers, data analysts, database engineers, and administrators by watching YouTube videos and putting what they learn into practice.

freeCodeCamp has a YouTube channel with over 1,000 videos on web development, data science, machine learning, freelancing, databases, and everything related to tech.

In addition to the freeCodeCamp channel, there are lots of other great channels such as Traversy Media , NetNinja , WebDevSimplified , Florin Pop , AmigosCode , and a lot more.

Learn to Code with freeCodeCamp

fcc

To narrow it down a little from Google searches and YouTube, freeCodeCamp is a great platform where you can learn how to code – it's one of the best in the world, actually.

And one of the best parts? You don't have to pay anything to learn to code because freeCodeCamp is a non-profit and all of its resources are completely free to use.

To get started with freeCodeCamp, you can log on to the curriculum website and sign up . Then you will get full access to the entire 3,000+ hour curriculum that can take you from zero to hero, novice to ninja, and beginner to expert in coding.

Apart from the curriculum, freeCodeCamp has a solid presence on YouTube in English and Spanish , as I mentioned above.

There is also a forum like StackOverflow where you can interact with fellow campers (that’s what freeCodeCamp users are called), ask questions, and get your coding issues resolved.

And of course there's freeCodeCamp's publication , where you are now, that contains over 7,000 tutorials on a wide range of tech topics.

Learn to Code with the MDN (Mozilla Developer Network)

mdn

MDN has one of the largest collections of documentation for web technologies and APIs such as HTML, CSS, JavaScript.

If you are the type that likes to learn by reading, MDN is a great place to learn coding and web development.

The beautiful thing about MDN is that the documentation is regularly updated and so you learn everything in a modern way.

Learn to Code with Sololearn

sololearn

Sololearn is a social and interactive platform where you can learn any programming language and many of the popular frameworks and libraries. I used the platform myself while starting out, so I can testify to how helpful it is.

The curriculum is not really the most attractive thing about Sololearn – rather, it's the community. Millions of people all around the world get to interact and brainstorm on coding, so you can ask questions openly and resolve your issues, post your projects, and get feedback.

In addition, you get the chance to compete with other people in quizzes and send them direct messages.

Sololearn is available in web and mobile versions. You can download the mobile app from the app store.

Coding is increasingly becoming an integral part of our world. Learning to code has changed a lot of lives as it can give you the skills to get a great job and earn your financial freedom. And there are tons of employment opportunities out there right now.

If you are willing to learn how to code, you don't need to worry about the cost. There are tons of free resources online available for you to explore, as we've seen in this article.

So what are you waiting for? Learn how to code today.

Web developer and technical writer focusing on frontend technologies. I also dabble in a lot of other technologies.

If you read this far, thank the author to show them you care. Say Thanks

Learn to code for free. freeCodeCamp's open source curriculum has helped more than 40,000 people get jobs as developers. Get started

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Kenneth Leroy Busbee

An assignment statement sets and/or re-sets the value stored in the storage location(s) denoted by a variable name; in other words, it copies a value into the variable. [1]

The assignment operator allows us to change the value of a modifiable data object (for beginning programmers this typically means a variable). It is associated with the concept of moving a value into the storage location (again usually a variable). Within most programming languages the symbol used for assignment is the equal symbol. But bite your tongue, when you see the = symbol you need to start thinking: assignment. The assignment operator has two operands. The one to the left of the operator is usually an identifier name for a variable. The one to the right of the operator is a value.

Simple Assignment

The value 21 is moved to the memory location for the variable named: age. Another way to say it: age is assigned the value 21.

Assignment with an Expression

The item to the right of the assignment operator is an expression. The expression will be evaluated and the answer is 14. The value 14 would be assigned to the variable named: total_cousins.

Assignment with Identifier Names in the Expression

The expression to the right of the assignment operator contains some identifier names. The program would fetch the values stored in those variables; add them together and get a value of 44; then assign the 44 to the total_students variable.

  • cnx.org: Programming Fundamentals – A Modular Structured Approach using C++
  • Wikipedia: Assignment (computer science) ↵

Programming Fundamentals Copyright © 2018 by Kenneth Leroy Busbee is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License , except where otherwise noted.

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  • Compiler Design Tutorial

Introduction

  • Introduction of Compiler Design
  • Compiler construction tools
  • Phases of a Compiler
  • Symbol Table in Compiler
  • Error detection and Recovery in Compiler
  • Error Handling in Compiler Design
  • Language Processors: Assembler, Compiler and Interpreter

Generation of Programming Languages

Lexical analysis.

  • Introduction of Lexical Analysis
  • Flex (Fast Lexical Analyzer Generator )
  • Introduction of Finite Automata
  • Ambiguous Grammar

Syntax Analysis

  • Introduction to Syntax Analysis in Compiler Design
  • Why FIRST and FOLLOW in Compiler Design?
  • FIRST Set in Syntax Analysis
  • FOLLOW Set in Syntax Analysis
  • Classification of Context Free Grammars
  • Parsing | Set 1 (Introduction, Ambiguity and Parsers)
  • Classification of Top Down Parsers
  • Bottom-up or Shift Reduce Parsers | Set 2
  • Shift Reduce Parser in Compiler
  • SLR Parser (with Examples)
  • CLR Parser (with Examples)
  • Construction of LL(1) Parsing Table
  • LALR Parser (with Examples)

Syntax Directed Translation

  • Syntax Directed Translation in Compiler Design
  • S - attributed and L - attributed SDTs in Syntax directed translation
  • Parse Tree in Compiler Design
  • Parse Tree and Syntax Tree
  • Code Generation and Optimization
  • Code Optimization in Compiler Design
  • Intermediate Code Generation in Compiler Design
  • Issues in the design of a code generator
  • Three address code in Compiler
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  • Compiler Design | Detection of a Loop in Three Address Code
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Runtime Environments

  • Static and Dynamic Scoping
  • Runtime Environments in Compiler Design
  • Loader in C/C++

Compiler Design LMN

  • Last Minute Notes - Compiler Design

Compiler Design GATE PYQ's and MCQs

  • Lexical analysis
  • Parsing and Syntax directed translation
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There are five generations of Programming languages. They are:  First-Generation Languages :   These are low-level languages like machine language.  Second-Generation Languages :   These are low-level assembly languages used in kernels and hardware drives.  Third-Generation Languages :   These are high-level languages like C, C++, Java, Visual Basic, and JavaScript.  Fourth Generation Languages :   These are languages that consist of statements that are similar to statements in the human language. These are used mainly in database programming and scripting. Examples of these languages include Perl, Python, Ruby, SQL, and MatLab(MatrixLaboratory).  Fifth Generation Languages :   These are the programming languages that have visual tools to develop a program. Examples of fifth-generation languages include Mercury, OPS5, and Prolog.  The first two generations are called low-level languages. The next three generations are called high-level languages.   

computer assignment programming language

1. First-Generation Language :

The first-generation languages are also called machine languages/ 1G language. This language is machine-dependent. The machine language statements are written in binary code (0/1 form) because the computer can understand only binary language.

Advantages :

1. Fast & efficient as statements are directly written in binary language.

2. No translator is required.

Disadvantages :

1.  Difficult to learn binary codes.

2. Difficult to understand – both programs & where the error occurred.

2. Second Generation Language :

The second-generation languages are also called assembler languages/ 2G languages. Assembly language contains human-readable notations that can be further converted to machine language using an assembler.

Assembler – converts assembly level instructions to machine-level instructions.

Programmers can write the code using symbolic instruction codes that are meaningful abbreviations of mnemonics. It is also known as low-level language.

1. It is easier to understand if compared to machine language.

2. Modifications are easy.

3. Correction & location of errors are easy.

1. Assembler is required.

2. This language is architecture /machine-dependent, with a different instruction set for different machines.

3. Third-Generation Language :

The third generation is also called procedural language /3 GL. It consists of the use of a series of English-like words that humans can understand easily, to write instructions. It’s also called High-Level Programming Language. For execution, a program in this language needs to be translated into machine language using a Compiler/ Interpreter. Examples of this type of language are C, PASCAL, FORTRAN, COBOL, etc.

1. Use of English-like words makes it a human-understandable language.

2. Lesser number of lines of code as compared to the above 2 languages.

3. Same code can be copied to another machine & executed on that machine by using compiler-specific to that machine.

1. Compiler/ interpreter is needed.

2. Different compilers are needed for different machines.

4. Fourth Generation Language :

The fourth-generation language is also called a non – procedural language/ 4GL. It enables users to access the database. Examples: SQL, Foxpro, Focus, etc.

These languages are also human-friendly to understand.

1. Easy to understand & learn.

2. Less time is required for application creation.

3. It is less prone to errors.

1. Memory consumption is high.

2. Has poor control over Hardware.

3. Less flexible.

5. Fifth Generation Language :

The fifth-generation languages are also called 5GL. It is based on the concept of artificial intelligence. It uses the concept that rather than solving a  problem algorithmically, an application can be built to solve it based on some constraints, i.e., we make computers learn to solve any problem. Parallel Processing & superconductors are used for this type of language to make real artificial intelligence.

Examples: PROLOG, LISP, etc.

1. Machines can make decisions.

2. Programmer effort reduces to solve a problem.

3. Easier than 3GL or 4GL to learn and use.

1. Complex and long code.

2. More resources are required & they are expensive too.  

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  • Assignment Statement

An Assignment statement is a statement that is used to set a value to the variable name in a program .

Assignment statement allows a variable to hold different types of values during its program lifespan. Another way of understanding an assignment statement is, it stores a value in the memory location which is denoted by a variable name.

Assignment Statement Method

The symbol used in an assignment statement is called as an operator . The symbol is ‘=’ .

Note: The Assignment Operator should never be used for Equality purpose which is double equal sign ‘==’.

The Basic Syntax of Assignment Statement in a programming language is :

variable = expression ;

variable = variable name

expression = it could be either a direct value or a math expression/formula or a function call

Few programming languages such as Java, C, C++ require data type to be specified for the variable, so that it is easy to allocate memory space and store those values during program execution.

data_type variable_name = value ;

In the above-given examples, Variable ‘a’ is assigned a value in the same statement as per its defined data type. A data type is only declared for Variable ‘b’. In the 3 rd line of code, Variable ‘a’ is reassigned the value 25. The 4 th line of code assigns the value for Variable ‘b’.

Assignment Statement Forms

This is one of the most common forms of Assignment Statements. Here the Variable name is defined, initialized, and assigned a value in the same statement. This form is generally used when we want to use the Variable quite a few times and we do not want to change its value very frequently.

Tuple Assignment

Generally, we use this form when we want to define and assign values for more than 1 variable at the same time. This saves time and is an easy method. Note that here every individual variable has a different value assigned to it.

(Code In Python)

Sequence Assignment

(Code in Python)

Multiple-target Assignment or Chain Assignment

In this format, a single value is assigned to two or more variables.

Augmented Assignment

In this format, we use the combination of mathematical expressions and values for the Variable. Other augmented Assignment forms are: &=, -=, **=, etc.

Browse more Topics Under Data Types, Variables and Constants

  • Concept of Data types
  • Built-in Data Types
  • Constants in Programing Language 
  • Access Modifier
  • Variables of Built-in-Datatypes
  • Declaration/Initialization of Variables
  • Type Modifier

Few Rules for Assignment Statement

Few Rules to be followed while writing the Assignment Statements are:

  • Variable names must begin with a letter, underscore, non-number character. Each language has its own conventions.
  • The Data type defined and the variable value must match.
  • A variable name once defined can only be used once in the program. You cannot define it again to store other types of value.
  • If you assign a new value to an existing variable, it will overwrite the previous value and assign the new value.

FAQs on Assignment Statement

Q1. Which of the following shows the syntax of an  assignment statement ?

  • variablename = expression ;
  • expression = variable ;
  • datatype = variablename ;
  • expression = datatype variable ;

Answer – Option A.

Q2. What is an expression ?

  • Same as statement
  • List of statements that make up a program
  • Combination of literals, operators, variables, math formulas used to calculate a value
  • Numbers expressed in digits

Answer – Option C.

Q3. What are the two steps that take place when an  assignment statement  is executed?

  • Evaluate the expression, store the value in the variable
  • Reserve memory, fill it with value
  • Evaluate variable, store the result
  • Store the value in the variable, evaluate the expression.

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Assignment on Computer Programming Languages

Computer Programming Language

Computer Programming languages were first developed with a series of steps with the vision to wire a desired program.  These morphed into a wide series of particular steps put into the computer to be executed.  later  on with more and more research these languages acquired  some advanced features such as logical branching and object orientation.

What Is PHP?

The World Wide Web has changed very fast in so many ways. Sometimes it seems like yesterday that a little known markup language with a strange name HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) was used by some physicists to link scientific documents at a group of CERN servers. It was wondrous to read some text somewhere in the world with just a simple program, and what is more information in the document could magically transport you to another one with related information. And this spread relatively quickly to other sciences. Text-only interfaces were the norm, and simplicity of accessing information content the most important part of the equation. Text documents with a small set of tags and a simple server setup was all you needed to inform your colleagues and share the knowledge , independently of whether the organic chemist at the other end was using his trusty Mac, or the theoretician was using her Unix box, or the impoverished graduate was using a second or third hand PC running very flaky TCP/IP software. Nowadays we expect more, much more than this. A modern web site is not just a web server; it also includes a way of storing data and querying (a SQL database perhaps), a way of processing the requests from the user and creating documents with the

appropriate information. Open source products will be your best assurance that your application that works now in the “Super-Turbo Hexium IX” machine of today, will work in the “Nanotech Cube Aleph” of tomorrow (I am exaggerating just a wee bit).

Why use php?

PHP (acronym for: PHP Hypertext Preprocessor), is a server-side embedded scripting language. This means that it works within an HTML document to confer to it the capacity of generating content on demand. You can convert your site into a web application, not just a collection of static pages with information that may not get updated quite so often, which may be alright for a “personal” web site (yes, we all have made such a beast), but not for one that is going to be used for business or for education.

You may be asking “But, why PHP? There are so many other options like ASP, Cold Fusion, Perl, Java, Python, even good old shell/awk/sed scripts?”, and the answer will be: simplicity, an almost natural way of using databases and platform independence. PHP was designed to work on the web, and in this ambit it excels; connecting and querying a database is a simple task that can be handled in 2 or 3 lines of code. The PHP scripting engine is well optimized for the response times needed on web applications, it can even be part of the web server itself improving the throughput even more. If it were only a matter of improving the speed of the scripts, then PHP will be one of many solutions .But there is more to the PHP equation than that. There is the simplicity and robustness of the language and the scripting engine. There is the connectivity to an ever increasing number of database servers, the shorter development cycles and the ease (encouraged by the syntaxes and constructs) of creating modular and reusable components .And did I mention that it is open source? There’s no more waiting until the next release for a feature to be added or a bug to get fixed. Just take the source, make your modifications and there you are, instant customization and complete control. No more guessing at whether a particular function or feature is insecure, the code does not lie. And who knows, maybe your modification gets to be so popular that others may want to use it.

Example of PHP

Echo ”I am Samar”;

The output is I am Samar.

Software Availablity

Yes php is free get from internet. You go to URL:www.php.net then you get software of php. The software name is php-tired.

Working Platforms

And you cannot beat the total price for a development environment using the combination of Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP, not only cheaper than other more proprietary environments, but also more stable and robust.

PHP also use in winxp,winme,2000.

What is JavaScript

M any of the technologies that make the World Wide Web possible have far exceeded their original visions. It’s the enormous popularity of the Web and the accessibility of the technologies to everyday folks who have intriguing ideas that has led to an unprecedented explosion in turning the World Wide Web from a bland publishing medium into a highly interactive, operating system-agnostic authoring platform. The JavaScript language is a Web-enhancing technology. When employed on the client computer, the language can help turn a static page of content into an engaging, interactive, and intelligent experience. Applications can be as subtle as welcoming a site’s visitor with the greeting “Good morning!”   when it is morning in the client computer’s time zone—even though it is dinnertime where the server is located. Or applications can be much more obvious, such as delivering the content of a slide show in one-page download while JavaScript controls the sequence of hiding, showing, and “flying slide” transitions while navigating through the presentation. Of course, JavaScript is not the only technology that can give life to drab Web content. Therefore, it is important to understand where JavaScript fits within the array of JavaScript standards, tools, and other technologies at your disposal. The alternative technologies described in this chapter are HTML, server programs, plug-ins, and Java applets. In most cases, JavaScript can work side by side with these other technologies, even though the hype around some make them sound like one-stop shopping places for all your interactive needs. That’s rarely the case. Finally, you learn about the origins of JavaScript and what role it plays in today’s advanced Web browsers.

The Software Tools

The best way to learn JavaScript is to type the HTML and scripting code into documents in a text editor. Your choice of editor is up to you, although I provide you with some guidelines for choosing a text editor in the next section.

Choosing a text editor

For the purposes of learning JavaScript in this book, avoid WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) Web page authoring tools, such as FrontPage and  Dream Weaver, for now. These tools certainly will come in handy afterward when you can productively use those facilities for molding the bulk of your content and layout. But the examples in this book focus more on script content (which you must type in anyway), so thereisn’t much HTML that you have to type. Files for all complete Web page listings (except for the tutorial chapters) also appear on the companion CD-ROM.To save the file initially as a text or / extension file requires mucking around in the Save As dialog box. This requirement is truly a nuisance. Nothing’s wrong with using bare-essentials text editors. In Windows, that includes the WordPad program or a more fully featured product such as the shareware editor called TextPad. For the MacOS, Simple Text is also fine—although the lack of a search-and-replace function may get in the way when you start managing your Web site pages. A favorite among Mac HTML authors and scripters is BBEdit (Bare Bones Software), which includes a number of useful aids for scripters, such

as optional line numbers (which help in debugging JavaScript).

Example of javascript

<HTML>

<HEAD>

<TITLE>My First Script</TITLE>

</HEAD>

<BODY>

<H1>Let’s Script…</H1>

<SCRIPT LANGUAGE=”JavaScript”>

<!– hide from old browsers

document.write(“This browser is version “ + navigator.appVersion)

document.write(“ of <B>” + navigator.appName + “</B>.”)

// end script hiding –></SCRIPT></BODY></HTML>

Javascript Software file available in own windows as like Win32 operating systems (Windows 95/98/NT/2000/ME)

Working Platform

I n you set up a productive script-writing and previewing environment on your computer, and then you write a simple script whose results you can see in your JavaScript-compatible browser. Because of differences in the way various personal computing operating systems behave, I present details of environments for two popular variants: Win32 operating systems (Windows 95/98/NT/2000/ME) and the MacOS. For the most part, your JavaScript authoring experience is the same regardless of the operating system platform you use—including Linux or UNIX. Although there may be slight differences in

font designs depending on your browser and operating system,

the information remains the same. Most illustrations of

browser output in this book are made from the Win32 version

of Internet Explorer 5. x .

What Is AJAX?

Understanding AJAX

AJAX is an acronym for Asynchronous JavaScript and XML. If you think it doesn’t say much, we agree. Simply put, AJAX can be reads “empowered JavaScript”, because it essentially offers a technique for client-side JavaScript to make background server calls and retrieve additional data as needed, updating certain portions of the page without causing full page reloads. Figure   offers a visual representation of what happens when a typical   AJAX-enabled web page is requested by a visitor:

                                                 Figure : A Typical AJAX Call

When put in perspective, AJAX is about reaching a better balance between client functionality and server functionality when executing the action requested by the user. Up until now, client-side functionality and server-side functionality were regarded as separate bits of functionality that work one at a time to respond to user’s actions. AJAX comes with the solution to balance the load between the client and the server by allowing them to communicate in the background while the user is working on the page.

 Without AJAX, there were two form validation techniques. The first was to let the user type all the required data, let him or her submit the page, and perform the validation on the server. In this scenario the user experiences a dead time while waiting for the new page to load. The alternative was to do this verification at the client, but this wasn’t always possible (or feasible) because it implied loading too much data on the client (just think if you needed to validate that the entered city and the entered country match).

Description

<html>

<head><title>Ajax foundation: JavaScript and DOM</title>

<script type=”text/javascript” src=”jsdom.js”>

            </script>

</head>

<body>

I love you!

</body>

</html>

This is  Jsdom.js  file

var date=new Date();

var hour=date.getHours();

if (hour >= 22 || hour <= 5)

document.write(“Goodnight world!”);

document.write(“HelloWorld!”);

I present details of environments for two popular variants: Win32 operating systems (Windows 95/98/NT/2000/ME) and the MacOS. For the most part, your AJAX authoring experience is the same regardless of the operating system platform you use—including Linux or UNIX.

What is ASP?

ASP is a server side scripting technology that enables scripts (embedded in web pages) to be executed by an Internet server.

  • ASP is a Microsoft Technology
  • ASP stands for Active Server Pages
  • ASP is a program that runs inside IIS
  • IIS stands for Internet Information Services
  • IIS comes as a free component with Windows 2000
  • IIS is also a part of the Windows NT 4.0 Option Pack
  • The Option Pack can be downloaded from Microsoft
  • PWS is a smaller – but fully functional – version of IIS
  • PWS can be found on your Windows 95/98 CD

What is an ASP File?

  • An ASP file is just the same as an HTML file
  • An ASP file can contain text, HTML, XML, and scripts
  • Scripts in an ASP file are executed on the server
  • An ASP file has the file extension “.asp”

How Does it Work?

  • When a browser requests an HTML file, the server returns the file
  • When a browser requests an ASP file, IIS passes the request to the ASP engine on the server
  • The ASP engine reads the file, line by line, and executes the scripts in the file
  • Finally, the ASP file is returned to the browser as plain HTML

What is ASP+?

ASP+ is the same as ASP.NET.

ASP+ is just an early name used by Microsoft when they developed ASP.NET.

What is ASP.NET?

ASP 3.0 is the latest version of ASP, but there will never be an ASP 4.0 version.

ASP.NET is the next generation ASP, but it’s not an upgraded version of ASP. ASP.NET is an entirely new paradigm for server-side ASP scripting.

ASP.NET is a part of the .NET Framework. Microsoft spent three years rewriting ASP.NET from the ground up, and ASP.NET is not fully backward compatible with ASP 3.0.

You can read more about the differences between ASP and ASP.NET in the next chapter of this tutorial.

Differences between ASP and ASP .NET

New in ASP .NET

  • Better language support
  • Programmable controls
  • Event-driven programming
  • XML-based components
  • User authentication, with accounts and roles
  • Higher scalability
  • Increased performance – Compiled code
  • Easier configuration and deployment
  • Not fully ASP compatible

Language Support

ASP .NET uses the new ADO .NET.

ASP .NET supports full Visual Basic, not VBScript.

ASP .NET supports C# (C sharp) and C++.

ASP .NET supports JScript as before.

ASP .NET Components

ASP .NET components are heavily based on XML. Like the new AD Rotator, that uses XML to store advertisement information and configuration.

Compiled Code

The first request for an ASP .NET page on the server will compile the ASP .NET code and keep a cached copy in memory. The result of this is greatly increased performance.

Easy Configuration

Configuration of ASP .NET is done with plain text files.

Configuration files can be uploaded or changed while the application is running. No need to restart the server. No more metabase or registry puzzle.

Compatibility

ASP .NET is not fully compatible with earlier versions of ASP, so most of the old ASP code will need some changes to run under ASP .NET.

To overcome this problem, ASP .NET uses a new file extension “.aspx”. This will make ASP .NET applications able to run side by side with standard ASP applications on the same server.

Dynamic Page in Classic ASP

Service Packs and Updates

Before ASP.NET can be installed on your computer, it is necessary to have all relevant service packs and security updates installed.

The easiest way to do this is to activate your Windows Internet Update. When you access the Windows Update page, you will be instructed to install the latest service packs and all critical security updates. For Windows 2000, make sure you install Service Pack 2. I will also recommend that you install Internet Explorer 6.

Read the note about connection speed and download time at the bottom of this page.

Remove Your Beta Version

If you have a Beta version of ASP.NET installed, we recommend that you completely uninstall it. Or even better: start with a fresh Windows 2000 or XP installation.

Install .NET

From your Windows Update you can now select to install the Microsoft .NET Framework.

After download, the .NET framework will install itself on your computer – there are no options to select for installation.

Working  Platforms

A Windows Computer

ASP.NET is a Microsoft technology. To run ASP.NET you need a computer capable of running Windows.

Windows 2000 or XP

If you are serious about developing ASP.NET applications you should install Windows 2000 Professional or Windows XP Professional.

In both cases, make sure you install the Internet Information Services (IIS) from the Add/Remove Windows components dialog.

What is XML?

  • XML stands for E x tensible M arkup L anguage
  • XML is a markup language much like HTML
  • XML was designed to describe data
  • XML tags are not predefined. You must define your own tags
  • XML uses a Document Type Definition (DTD) or an XML Schema to describe the data
  • XML with a DTD or XML Schema is designed to be self-descriptive
  • XML is a W3C Recommendation

The Main Difference Between XML and HTML

XML was designed to carry data.

XML is not a replacement for HTML. XML and HTML were designed with different goals:

XML was designed to describe data and to focus on what data is. HTML was designed to display data and to focus on how data looks.

HTML is about displaying information, while XML is about describing information.

Example of XML

The output is:

Hello              my name is Tove,

will be displayed like this:

Hello my name is Tove,

XML is Text-based

XML is a text-based markup language.

One great thing about XML is that XML files can be created and edited using a simple text-editor like Notepad.

However, when you start working with XML, you will soon find that it is better to edit XML documents using a professional XML editor.

Why Not Notepad?

Many web developers use Notepad to edit both HTML and XML documents because Notepad is included with the most common OS and it is simple to use. Personally I often use Notepad for quick editing of simple HTML, CSS, and XML files.

But, if you use Notepad for XML editing, you will soon run into problems.

Notepad does not know that you are writing XML, so it will not be able to assist you.

Why an XML Editor?

Today XML is an important technology, and development projects use XML-based technologies like:

  • XML Schema to define XML structures and data types
  • XSLT to transform XML data
  • SOAP to exchange XML data between applications
  • WSDL to describe web services
  • RDF to describe web resources
  • XPath and XQuery to access XML data
  • SMIL to define graphics

To be able to write error-free XML documents, you will need an intelligent XML editor!

XML Editors

Professional XML editors will help you to write error-free XML documents, validate your XML against a DTD or a schema, and force you to stick to a valid XML structure.

An XML editor should be able to:

  • Add closing tags to your opening tags automatically
  • Force you to write valid XML
  • Verify your XML against a DTD
  • Verify your XML against a Schema
  • Color code your XML syntax

Nearly all major browsers have support for XML and XSLT.

Mozilla Firefox

As of version 1.0.2, Firefox has support for XML and XSLT (and CSS).

Mozilla includes Expat for XML parsing and has support to display XML + CSS. Mozilla also has some support for Namespaces.

Mozilla is available with an XSLT implementation.

As of version 8, Netscape uses the Mozilla engine, and therefore it has the same XML / XSLT support as Mozilla.

Internet Explorer

As of version 6, Internet Explorer supports XML, Namespaces, CSS, XSLT, and XPath.

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