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- Best way to output HTML from PHP
January 28, 2008, 4:13 pm
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When I create a website in php I may have a page called products.php.
This script will contain any code required to produce a list of
products and build them into an array of objects perhaps. At the
bottom of the script I would have the following:
This page will be the HTML with embedded PHP to output the list of
<?php foreach($arProducts as $product): ?>
<?php endforeach; ?>
This appears very similar to something like Smarty exept I prefer to
have the use of objects and their methods when using the template.
Also I read an article on it that made a point that Smarty doesnt
really do much more than PHP as a template engine (as my above example
Now XSLT is something I dont really have a lot of practical experience
in. I know how to create an XSL file but how is it best used in PHP.
Should the XSL be used to output a whole HTML page <html>...</html> or
just simple a table or something. I would have to convert my data to
XML to perform the transformation and this just seems like an extra
process required from my own technique. XSLT has been around for a bit
now and it would seem with the added support for it in PHP5 it is very
Anyway, the point of this post is just to get peoples opinions on
outputting the front end of a page. My technique of using PHP for
templating works well for me but I may be wrong in other
circumstanses. Any guidance on this area would be much appreciated
Re: Best way to output HTML from PHP
Not just Smarty - very common, even if you're not using templates. I
regularly include things like this - especially when they're being used
on multiple pages.
What do you need XSLT for, anyway? Do you have a specific need?
As for what to output - it all depends on the circumstances. If the
code is always going to be a full page, and never have anything else on
that page, go ahead and put the <html>...</html> code in there. But
that limits your reuse.
Remember - the biggest advantage of include files is reusability.
Include too much and you limit that reusability.
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