With in the last few years, PHP has grown to be the most widespread web platform in the world, operational in more than a third of the web servers across the globe. PHP's growth is not only quantitative but also qualitative. More and more companies, including Fortune companies, rely on PHP to run their business-critical applications, which creates new jobs and increases the demand for PHP developers. Version 5, due to be released in the very near future, holds an even greater promise. While the complexity of starting off with PHP remains unchanged and very low, the features offered by PHP today enable developers to reach far beyond simple HTML applications. The revised object model allows for largescale projects to be written efficiently, using standard object-oriented methodologies. New XML support makes PHP the best language available for processing XML and, coupled with new SOAP support, an ideal platform for creating and using Web Services. This book, written by my colleague, Andi Gutmans, and two very prominent PHP developers, Stig Bakken and Derick Rethans, holds the key to unlocking the riches of PHP 5. It thoroughly covers all of the features of the new version, and is a must-have for all PHP developers who are interested in exploring PHP 5's advanced features.