Access a JavaScript variable from PHP


Question

I need to access a JavaScript variable with PHP. Here's a stripped-down version of the code I'm currently trying, which isn't working:

<script type="text/javascript" charset="utf-8">
    var test = "tester";
</script>

<?php
    echo $_GET['test'];
?>

I'm a completely new to both JavaScript and PHP, so I would really appreciate any advice.

UPDATE: OK, I guess I simplified that too much. What I'm trying to do is create a form that will update a Twitter status when submitted. I've got the form working OK, but I want to also add geolocation data. Since I'm using Javascript (specifically, the Google Geolocation API) to get the location, how do I access that information with PHP when I'm submitting the form?

1
27
4/11/2011 10:24:16 PM

Accepted Answer

The short answer is you can't.

I don't know any PHP syntax, but what I can tell you is that PHP is executed on the server and JavaScript is executed on the client (on the browser).

You're doing a $_GET, which is used to retrieve form values:

The built-in $_GET function is used to collect values in a form with method="get".

In other words, if on your page you had:

<form method="get" action="blah.php">
    <input name="test"></input>
</form>

Your $_GET call would retrieve the value in that input field.

So how to retrieve a value from JavaScript?

Well, you could stick the javascript value in a hidden form field...

<script type="text/javascript" charset="utf-8">
    var test = "tester";
    // find the 'test' input element and set its value to the above variable
    document.getElementByID("test").value = test;
</script>

... elsewhere on your page ...

<form method="get" action="blah.php">
    <input id="test" name="test" visibility="hidden"></input>
    <input type="submit" value="Click me!"></input>
</form>

Then, when the user clicks your submit button, he/she will be issuing a "GET" request to blah.php, sending along the value in 'test'.

34
2/26/2010 1:36:37 AM

As JavaScript is a client-side language and PHP is a server-side language you would need to physically push the variable to the PHP script, by either including the variable on the page load of the PHP script (script.php?var=test), which really has nothing to do with JavaScript, or by passing the variable to the PHP via an AJAX/AHAH call each time the variable is changed.

If you did want to go down the second path, you'd be looking at XMLHttpRequest, or my preference, jQuerys Ajax calls: http://docs.jquery.com/Ajax


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