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For 2023 - we are now fully retired from IT training.
We have made many, many friends over 25 years of teaching about Python, Tcl, Perl, PHP, Lua, Java, C and C++ - and MySQL, Linux and Solaris/SunOS too. Our training notes are now very much out of date, but due to upward compatability most of our examples remain operational and even relevant ad you are welcome to make us if them "as seen" and at your own risk.

Lisa and I (Graham) now live in what was our training centre in Melksham - happy to meet with former delegates here - but do check ahead before coming round. We are far from inactive - rather, enjoying the times that we are retired but still healthy enough in mind and body to be active!

I am also active in many other area and still look after a lot of web sites - you can find an index ((here))
Certification schemes

Should we offer certified training courses to agendas laid down by the likes of Sun, Adobe and Zend, or should we offer courses to our own agendas? There are arguments both ways, and we reconsider from time to time. I thought you might be interested in a (slightly long) item I wrote in response to a specific enquiry a few minutes ago (relating to PHP and the Zend certification)

We have given repeated consideration over a number of years to providing "official" training and taking part in "certification schemes" for some of the products on which we train, but haven't gone with any of them. Although it might help us to sell our courses in a few cases, we believe that we can do better offering our customers training to suit their need on the ground, rather than to pass an exam or to produce a "cookie-cutter" developer. A further issue is the conflict of interest created by us running a training course on which the attendee is provided with a certificate making him more easily able to move away from the employer who has paid for his training. There's more written on this topic elsewhere on our site and the text quoted on that page is actually relating to PHP certification from Zend ....

Of course, the fact that we write our own notes and set our own agenda means that we have to take especial care to ensure that we provide both what is right for the client, and what is going to be right to see him into the future too. We do this in a number of ways. Firstly, we do read extensively - the press, online, books, etc. Secondly, we undertake contract work ourselves and actually use the subjects that we teach. Thirdly, we listen to our trainees and their requirements; some of them get pretty advanced in specialist areas, others send more junior staff to us and already have senior (and very knowledgeable) PHP gurus on their staff. Fourthly, we review other training offerings on PHP to ensure that we're reasonably in line and not missing anything - although we don't simply duplicate their offerings of course! Examples that we've looked at within the last couple of months include several London courses - see my further comments. We've also looked at other offerings such as those from First Alternative, Oracle, Academy X and Media Training. Additionally although we're not offering the certification (with the cost and other implications), we have reviewed the agenda / program for it and have a copy of the study guide ISBN number 0-672-32709-0 which is for sale at bookstores, and is now available for reference during our course. I'm confident that our course provides good training which will meet the basic requirements of the exam which I understand can be sat independently at a Prometric centre if you so wish.

I have left what is, perhaps, the most important way we keep our course up to date until last. It's vital that I (as the tutor) understand not only the mechanisms of the language, but also the application and best practice, and the intent of the authors and developers. For that reason, I take "time out" to travel and listen to the originators and active people at the "sharp end". PHP was written by Rasmus Lerdorf, who now works for Yahoo in Toronto where it remains an active part of his interest and area of influence. He stopped off in southern Europe on his way to Japan in October, and I travelled there to attend some day-and-a-half of talks he gave - the only lectures he did on what was also a holiday stopover. What did I learn? Not the language, but the intended practice, a direction for the future so that I don't lead trainees up blind alleys, and answers to some nagging "why" questions that no-one else seemed to know the answers to. And I now pass on that knowledge during our courses ....

You've already seen how we run an "Open" web site - full details of our staff, our prices are published on line. We're proud of what we can offer. However, we also respect the privacy of our clients and don't publish a customer list. Occasionally, a customer will himself publish the fact that he's Well House Consultants trained and recommend us ... Oxford University, for example.

A longish answer here - I hope it helps fill you in, and helps you decide whether our PHP training course is the one you should choose.

Postscript. . We currently offer three different PHP / related courses:
Technology for PHP
PHP Programming
Object Oriented Programming in PHP
Of these three, the PHP programming is the relevant course for most trainees. We have servers running both PHP 4 and PHP 5 available on the course; at the present time, most live servers are running PHP4, and the course is suitable for both, encouraging you to write code for your current system but ensuring that it will also run on PHP5 (there is one specific compatibility issue in core PHP4 v 5, and a number of additions you'll want to be aware of).

(written 2004-12-02, updated 2008-05-13)

Associated topics are indexed as below, or enter http://melksh.am/nnnn for individual articles
G502 - Well House Consultants - Business Practice
  [15] 90 to 10 or 80 to 20 rule - (2004-08-15)
  [27] Sales technique - (2004-08-25)
  [68] Get the strategy worked out and the tactics just fall into place. - (2004-09-30)
  [77] Telephone systems - (2004-10-07)
  [88] Getting the right level of trainer - (2004-10-14)
  [95] Five red flags - (2004-10-21)
  [108] A typical morning - (2004-11-03)
  [121] Fair and Simple - (2004-11-17)
  [125] Staff theft - (2004-11-21)
  [129] Trawling our site to prevent student copying - (2004-11-24)
  [157] Automatic service upgrades - (2004-12-19)
  [180] Skunk works - (2005-01-17)
  [188] Pink elephant and appreciation - (2005-01-24)
  [200] Tips for the top - (2005-02-03)
  [211] Look after your staff and they'll look after you. AOL. - (2005-02-12)
  [217] Use of time - (2005-02-16)
  [226] Growing our systems - (2005-02-24)
  [297] A reminder that the customer is King - (2005-05-01)
  [321] Sales - the alternative close - (2005-05-23)
  [399] simplicity hides real size - (2005-07-31)
  [438] Fair system for travel and accommodation expenses - (2005-09-07)
  [457] Do the work and take the risk - a PHP contract to avoid - (2005-10-06)
  [467] Tell them three times - (2005-10-17)
  [487] On line course booking - credit card protection - (2005-11-06)
  [491] Being atypical is typical - (2005-11-10)
  [536] Cancellations and penalties - (2005-12-21)
  [626] Not just a pretty face to answer the phone. - (2006-02-26)
  [652] Morning Post - (2006-03-20)
  [664] Ruby course - oops - it's not happening - (2006-04-01)
  [766] Discounts and approved supplier lists - (2006-06-17)
  [808] Sales call - (2006-07-19)
  [849] Staff Meeting - (2006-08-30)
  [869] UNABLE TO ATTEND - (2006-09-16)
  [883] Age discrimination law - (2006-10-01)
  [906] A commitment we won't be making - (2006-10-27)
  [1057] Selling by phone and Skype - our policy - (2007-01-30)
  [1084] Writing terms and conditions for conferences and other events - (2007-02-17)
  [1133] B-2-B Networking, 20th April. Useful for YOUR business? - (2007-04-03)
  [1157] Speed Networking - a great evening and how we arranged it - (2007-04-21)
  [1165] Extended Credit request - train in June and be paid in September - (2007-04-27)
  [1243] Heavy duty hole punch - (2007-06-24)
  [1260] An inspirational business talk from one of our prospective MPs - (2007-07-06)
  [1263] 0800 043 8225 - a new phone number for Well House - (2007-07-10)
  [1319] Customer feedback - lifeblood of a business - (2007-08-25)
  [1342] Google, wwmdirectory, Freshwater, ATP - new scam? - (2007-09-09)
  [1373] New Month, New Quarter, New Laws - (2007-10-01)
  [1394] Business to Business Networking - North and West Wilts / Melksham - (2007-10-17)
  [1453] What makes our courses special? - (2007-12-02)
  [1485] Copyright and theft of images, bandwidth and members. - (2007-12-26)
  [1626] Early May - a short chance to regroup and improve - (2008-05-01)
  [1713] Ways to accept credit cards - or not! - (2008-07-19)
  [1855] Volunteer v Employee - a skewed balance? (FSB) - (2008-10-25)
  [1913] Alastair Darling helps make paperwork and confusion - (2008-11-30)
  [2044] Please Trouble me - (2009-02-16)
  [2122] Commission Creep - (2009-04-08)
  [2126] Weeding out old phone numbers - (2009-04-11)
  [2161] Get it right ... if it goes wrong, it takes so much effort to sort out! - (2009-05-08)
  [2187] Are we IITT (Institute of IT Training) members? - (2009-05-17)
  [2190] How you are (re)presented at an exhibition - (2009-05-19)
  [2283] Everyone is in the customer relations business - (2009-07-12)
  [2331] Certification Revisted - Lua - (2009-08-09)
  [2465] Melksham Town - asleep or awake? - (2009-10-21)
  [2598] An excuse for making a sales call - (2010-01-26)
  [2788] Cost of Sales - (2010-06-01)
  [2821] Chancellor George Osborne inspires Perl Program - (2010-06-22)
  [2936] The service that customers should receive - (2010-08-27)
  [2966] Cheap Country Hotel in Melksham, Wiltshire? - (2010-09-21)
  [3073] Customer Service - the boundary - (2010-11-27)
  [3157] A new monopoly on the ferry to Northern Ireland - (2011-02-04)
  [3333] Honesty and a friendly welcome goes a long way - (2011-06-25)
  [3506] Cold call contacts - preference services and turning off spam sales approaches - (2011-11-03)
  [3613] Keeping Business Local. But is that realistic? - (2012-02-13)
  [3665] Will will smile? - (2012-03-22)
  [3750] Matching opening hours to when customers can come in and buy - (2012-06-04)
  [3755] Cruising on the Mersey Ferry? - (2012-06-07)
  [4107] Snog, Marry, Avoid - (2013-05-31)
  [4293] Certification - (2014-09-15)
  [4415] Buffet review - taking the price into account - (2015-02-05)
  [4520] No cold sales calls please - but delighted to hear from others! - (2015-09-29)

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This is a page archived from The Horse's Mouth at http://www.wellho.net/horse/ - the diary and writings of Graham Ellis. Every attempt was made to provide current information at the time the page was written, but things do move forward in our business - new software releases, price changes, new techniques. Please check back via our main site for current courses, prices, versions, etc - any mention of a price in "The Horse's Mouth" cannot be taken as an offer to supply at that price.

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