Skip to main content

How does CMS Create Dynamic Pages

Content Management System (CMS) gives you an easier way to manage sites. It gives you a nice front-end to write, publish and manage content while hiding the technical details like FTP, HTML and other coding work. Most of the CMSs have a web based front-end that means you can manage the whole site from within the browser. Some examples of popular CMS are Joomla, Wordpress etc.

One major characteristic of CMS is the fact that it creates the whole site dynamically, it means most (if not all) of the pages that the site has, are created dynamically. Conventional way of creating site was to create different HTML pages for each article (page) the site has. Contrary to that most CMS don’t create different files for pages. They store the content in the Database and create the pages from the Database. That means the content don’t reside in pages or files but rather in the Database.

In this post we’re going to create a simple system that will help you understand how pages are created from the content of the Database this way. Please note that we’ll not create an example of CMS but just a part of it.

Database in simple terms is something that is used for storing and retrieving data. Since we haven’t discussed it yet we’ll not be using it rather we’ll be using arrays. While arrays and databases have very things in common, they both can store data, the only feature of the database we need for this example.

Have a look at the following code:


  <?php
  //these arrays contain title of the articles
  $content_title[0]="Hello world";
  $content_title[1]="How does it look";
  $content_title[2]="PHP is great";
  $content_title[3]="Content Management System";
  $content_title[4]="CMS work this way!";

  //these contain the actual content
  $content_main[0]="First article of this site. 
    blah blah.";
  $content_main[1]="It looks great. blah blah.";
  $content_main[2]="Yeah sure PHP is very useful.
     blah blah.";
  $content_main[3]="Yeah CMS is good and very useful
     for managing sites without much technical knowledge.";
  $content_main[4]="Yeah, it teaches you how a single 
    script can be used to create multi-page site.";

  //the function count returns the number 
  //of elements (strings) in the array (5 in this case)
  $num_pages=count($content_title);

  //catch the data being passed
  $page=$_GET['p'];

  //isset function returns true if the 
  //variable has been assigned a value
  if(!isset($page)) //if page is requested without any GET data
  {//show the homepage
    echo "<h1>My Site: Homepage</h1>";
    echo "Welcome to my Web site. Below are the 
      links to pages to this site:</p>";
    echo "<p><b>LINKS</b></p>";

    //show the links to all the pages with
    //title of contant as anchor text
    //< br /> is used to break line or goto next line.
    for($i=0;$i<$num_pages;$i++)
    {
      echo "<a href=\"cms.php?p=".$i."\">".
        $content_title[$i]."</a> <br />";
    }
  }
  else//if any page is requested
  {
    echo "<h1>My Site</h1>";
    //show title of article 
    echo "<h2>".$content_title[$page]."</h2>";
    //show the main content
    echo "<p>".$content_main[$page]."</p>";
    echo "<p><b>LINKS</b></p>";

    //put the links
    for($i=0;$i<$num_pages;$i++)
    {
      echo "<a href=\"cms.php?p=".$i."\">".
        $content_title[$i]."</a> <br />";
    }
  }
  ?>

This article is to be continued in the next post where we’ll be discussing about the working of this code.

[Update: Read the next part of this post How does CMS Create Dynamic Pages II]

Related Articles:

Popular posts from this blog

Fix For Toshiba Satellite "RTC Battery is Low" Error (with Pictures)

RTC Battery is Low Error on a Toshiba Satellite laptop "RTC Battery is Low..." An error message flashing while you try to boot your laptop is enough to panic many people. But worry not! "RTC Battery" stands for Real-Time Clock battery which almost all laptops and PCs have on their motherboard to power the clock and sometimes to also keep the CMOS settings from getting erased while the system is switched off.  It is not uncommon for these batteries to last for years before requiring a replacement as the clock consumes very less power. And contrary to what some people tell you - they are not rechargeable or getting charged while your computer or laptop is running. In this article, we'll learn everything about RTC batteries and how to fix the error on your Toshiba Satellite laptop. What is an RTC Battery? RTC or CMOS batteries are small coin-shaped lithium batteries with a 3-volts output. Most laptops use

The Best Way(s) to Comment out PHP/HTML Code

PHP supports various styles of comments. Please check the following example: <?php // Single line comment code (); # Single line Comment code2 (); /* Multi Line comment code(); The code inside doesn't run */ // /* This doesn NOT start a multi-line comment block /* Multi line comment block The following line still ends the multi-line comment block //*/ The " # " comment style, though, is rarely used. Do note, in the example, that anything (even a multi-block comment /* ) after a " // " or " # " is a comment, and /* */ around any single-line comment overrides it. This information will come in handy when we learn about some neat tricks next. Comment out PHP Code Blocks Check the following code <?php //* Toggle line if ( 1 ) {      // } else {      // } //*/ //* Toggle line if ( 2 ) {      // } else {      // } //*/ Now see how easy it is to toggle a part of PHP code by just removing or adding a single " / " from th

Designing a Simple Order Form Application in PHP

Ok guys, for this post we’re going to create a simple yet complete order form page. Order forms are used on many sites to take customers order online. Order forms should have the capability to take orders from visitors regarding what items they want to purchase and store the information for further processing. For this post’s example, we are going to create an order form for a Book Seller. The form will be designed to take order of five different items (books). Our order form application should be able to take order of five different items in any separate quantities tht user wants, it should also ask for shipping address and name of the customer. It should then store the information provided in a file along with the date and time order was placed. The application should also be able to take any number of orders and store them all linearly for further human processing. For this, we need a front end of a HTML form to which the user would interact a