To say the least, “learning to code” can be an extremely daunting task. The amount of languages out there, the syntax, and the overall process of thinking can be very overwhelming at first. While every language has it’s pros and cons, if you’re looking to learn you’re first programming language or making the jump from front-end to back-end, PHP is the language for you.
Being “loosely typed” is PHP’s biggest strength and weakness. While it does limit performance, it makes it extremely easy on the developer to not have to worry about data types. Therefore, you will spend most of you’re mastering programming concepts like loops, if/else statements, and much more. The language also comes with many built-in features that make it much easier on the developer. Foreach loops are much easier to understand than your classic for loop. It’s also comes with many built-in functions like in_array() that definitely come in handy.
If you’re trying to make a career change, PHP is one of the most popular languages in terms of available jobs. There are countless amount of companies out there looking for PHP developers, and it does not look like that is going to change anytime soon.
The biggest reason why PHP is the best language to learn is how easy it is to install/set-up. There are many superior languages to PHP, however none are as easy to put on a server/install on your local computer for a beginner. Applications like WAMP and MAMP can get you a local PHP server set up in 10 minutes, and it is extremely simple to set up on any web server. Most hosting providers even have PHP enabled by default leaving the developer with nothing to worry about but writing good code.
If you’re looking for a language that’s going to be the answer to all you’re problems, it is NOT PHP. However, if you’ve been saying for a long time that you want to learn how to code, I highly suggest you make PHP your first language.