If you are an ASP.Net developer used to working with MasterPages (or any equivalant on another framework), you may be looking for an equivalant while working with php. I was looking to do something like that with my homepage (hoolihan.net). This is a very simple site, where a full framework would have been overkill.
Here’s how I pieced it out:
First: Create a template page, I called mine master.php.
Second: Create a content piece, for example about_text.php.
<p>This is information about me.</p>
Third: Create the page with the actual name you want to use:
$page_content = 'about_text.php';
One added benefit is that the content piece is then loadable in other places if need be.
Obviously, you’ll want to add a few bells and whistles. For example, It’s a good idea to check for $page_content being null, and provide a default in that case. I left out some of those things for the sake of brevity.
For more patterns in php, check out the following books:
Basically, it’s a real simple way to cleanly break up your php pages. Hope you found this useful…
Update 2: User Ton posted a good comment below about how to setup the content variable (and simplify your url) with apache.