PHP tags

When PHP parses a file, it looks for opening and closing tags, which are <?php and ?> which tell PHP to start and stop interpreting the code between them. Parsing in this manner allows PHP to be embedded in all sorts of different documents, as everything outside of a pair of opening and closing tags is ignored by the PHP parser.

PHP also allows for short open tags <? and ?> (which are discouraged because they are only available if enabled with short_open_tag php.ini configuration file directive, or if PHP was configured with the --enable-short-tags option.

If a file is pure PHP code, it is preferable to omit the PHP closing tag at the end of the file. This prevents accidental whitespace or new lines being added after the PHP closing tag, which may cause unwanted effects because PHP will start output buffering when there is no intention from the programmer to send any output at that point in the script.

echo "Hello world";

// ... more code

echo "Last statement";

// the script ends here with no PHP closing tag

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User Contributed Notes 5 notes

preda dot vlad at yahoo dot com
1 year ago
So here are the valid ways to open PHP tags:

<?php ?> // standard tags
<? ?> // short tags, need short_open_tag enabled in php.ini
<% %> // asp tags, need asp_tags enabled in php.ini
<script language="php"> </script> // case insensitive

PSR-1 coding standards suggest to only use <?php ?> or <?= ?> (echo short tags) - and no other variations, and PSR-2 suggests to not close the tags in PHP only files.
alisadikin008 at gmail dot com
1 month ago
<?php ?>
 //the most save basic  php tag
as basic programmer,I always use that tag,never use 3 others such as
<? ?>
<% %>
<script language="php"></script>

but i got onething strange,as contributed,
<?php ?> is colored
<script language="php"></script> is colored
check these two tag
<? ?> is not colored or black only
<% %> is not colored or black only
abdallah at meckki dot com
1 month ago
<?php ?> // standard tags is highly recommended.
manzoor_hussain739 at yahoo dot com
3 days ago
php is the best language for all kinds of website development. there are many cms which are developed in php like joomla.
and one of great joomla site is
(JB) JB_BlackBerry at live dot com
6 months ago
Hello to all of the proficient programmers.  Only the highest degree of respect intended.  I am not a programmer.  Many years ago I started to take a programming course that included C, Assembler, and COBOL. I had to move and did not continue my education.  Several years later I learned how to write bacic HTML pages.

I would like to learn a programming language or two.  Which languages would you recommend to begin with.  I have seen PHP used in some VBA programs.  I would like to write stand alone programs for my own use to build databases to keep track of various things, such as appointments, reminders to call or meet someone, pay bills on time--even pay the bill electronically if possible.

I would like to write the programs in the Windows, Linx, and Unix envrioments (need to learn Linx and Unix also) enviroments and make them compatable with 2000, XP, Win 7 and Win 8, and the new versions as they come out.

Can any of you suggest a good online place to begin, where I can download compilers, and detailed documentation is as simple to understand format as possible, and hopefully for free.
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