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I started programming when I was in 6th grade.  I started with Apple BASIC on an Apple II and then graduated to Pascal, Visual Basic, HTML, Perl, Java, and now PHP.  For someone with no programming knowledge who wants to start learning about programming I suggest Visual Basic.  It is easy to understand since it uses a lot of English syntax and you can get a learning version of the language if you buy a Sams' Teach Yourself Visual Basic in 21 Days book.  That is how I started.


It is worth learning and you really don't need a book.  You can go to many online tutorial sights that can teach you the basics of HTML.  Check out WebMonkey's online HTML tutorial.

Perl and PHP

When you are ready to take your website to the next level you need a powerful scripting language and that is what you get with Perl and PHP.  The best book on learning Perl is Wrox's Beginning Perl.  Now I started with Perl, but I like PHP better. I learned the basics at WebMonkey.