The main reason I migrated to PHP 5 within a month or two of its original release in July 2004 can be summed up in one word: SimpleXML. As the name suggests, it simplifies handling data stored in XML, which is frequently used for news feeds and transmitting data for web services, such as Google Maps and Amazon Web Services. Extracting data from an XML file in PHP 4 was so convoluted; my brain hurt just looking at the code. With SimpleXML, it became child's play.

In this chapter, you'll learn about:

  • What XML is and what it's used for

  • Extracting data from an XML document with SimpleXML

  • How to modify the contents ...

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