I Just Want One Thing (that isn’t a wild bantha chase)

I just want one thing to show for all of this effort and studying. I’ve learned a bunch but have nothing to show for it. I don’t expect to have written a world-changing program or an app at the top of the various app stores but I would like to be able to do this one thing:

  • Create a form that updates a database

I’d be doubly thrilled to

  • Create a form that retrieves data from a database

It seems to me this should be the simplest thing in the world. I can make a form in HTML. I could even make it really pretty using CSS and downright sexy with jQuery. I can create a database, tables, and rows in MySQL using the command line and phpMyAdmin.

For the life of me, I can’t find any course or tutorial that tells me how to successfully connect the two.

I found what I thought was a great one but it had the ubiquitous “one missing thing” preventing it from working. That one, vague thing the writer tells you to do without telling you how (if that one thing is actually there and merely vague instead of never mentioned at all). No matter how many others who came before me asking, “Hey, how do you do X that you mention?” or how many asked it after me, the idiot’s response is always, “Check out my tutorial at …” and that link takes you to the exact tutorial you’re commenting on.

This brick wall is what I ran into that made me move on to other things besides PHP (which is what I first started trying to learn). If I can’t use PHP to connect a client and server, it’s useless to me. To me, a form working with a database is the most basic thing anyone should be able to create or use on the web and yet I can’t find a single tutorial that explains it.

Okay, I’ll grant I have one caveat or standard: I want to actually learn how to do it. I want to understand how it works. I don’t want to just copy and paste–or even just type–code. When I’m looking at three tutorials for the same topic and all three give completely different methods with different commands … I have no idea what I’m looking at. Later, I might find out those are “real” commands or functions but that you’re allowed to just make up your own variable … and that would be nice to know.

Everything I’m learning is useless if I can’t make the most simple data-driven website. Even just a simple contact list I could update … and then in my wildest dreams be able to sort and filter.

Then, after I’ve lived those wild dreams, being able to use an API (another item at the top of my list of frustrations) for such tasks so I can, eventually, get around to creating some dynamic data visualizations … I could die happy.

When people say “focus on one thing instead of all these languages” I say that’s impossible. Using X requires me to know Y which is dependent on Z. If I could find a limited combination of things that work so I could f***ing create a form to f***ing update a f***ing database I would, absolutely, limit my focus but I’m on one wild bantha chase after another.

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About jotascript

Aiming to please. Seeking to impress.
This entry was posted in Frustration, PHP, Web Design, Web Development. Bookmark the permalink.

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