This manual does not attempt to provide instruction about general programming practices. First-time - or even just beginning - programmers may find it difficult to learn how to program in PHP using this manual exclusively. Instead, seek out a text more oriented towards beginners.
There are a number of active mailing lists for discussion on all aspects of programming with PHP. If stuck with a problem, consider using these lists. For support options, including mailing lists, view » the PHP.net support page.