Over years of development the one thing you gain is experience. An it is from this experience that I provide the below advice. Cause like many other beginer developers I got my advice from someone who knew better.
A good tutorial or teacher.
When I first started out with PHP development I knew nothing but basic html. I approached a PHP developer and explained to him that I wanted to learn PHP, one thing he done was give me a link to an online Zend PHP tutorial. It was pretty daunting at first looking at all of the code and explanations but luckily for me it was an easy going, well planned tutorial that had an in depth explaination for every step.The perfect tutorial for a beginner. It also kept things simple and interesting at the same time with a little bit of humor. Lets face it a boring tutorial is the last thing you need when learning something new. Tip from me.. your best friend is the PHP Manual.
The PHP manual.
In all of my trails and tribulations with PHP the PHP manual has never let me down, especially the manual that includes the user inputs and notes. I dont think the contributers of these notes know exactly how much there notes mean to beginers. Also the manual has a detailed search function that always seems to find what im looking for. With the manuals detailed descriptions, explanations and examples its perfect for the beginer… you just have to know what your looking for.
A good editor.
A editor is the key to solving problems that a beginer simply cannot pick up on. I have spent hours trying to resolve simple problems where my syntax was incorrect. An editor with syntax highlighting would have shown me where the problem was. Search the net and you will find something that suites your style.
Good examples would be:
- Editplus 3
- Netbeans IDE
Anyway I hope the above helps improve your skills, the sooner they improve the better. Whether it helps you get that promotion from IT support to the development department or helps get you that knowledge upgrade from html to PHP… Good luck.