Thanks very much for the detailed reply. I took most of this code from Welling and 
Thomson's book 
"PHP and MySQL Development," (chpt. 25) but I'm trying to modify it to fit my 
purposes. The html is 
mostly theirs, and it's not the way I would write it, but it's working on my test 
machine. I plan to 
clean it up and do cross-browser testing once the scripts work. 

I agree completely that the problem is most likely in the foreach line of the 
following code. 

     foreach($cart as $artID => $value)
        $cart[$artID] = $$artID;

You asked about the structure of the cart, and here's another problem area. One of the 
difficulties I've had learning PHP (my first attempt at any scripting/programming 
language, in case 
you hadn't noticed), is understanding array structures.

The cart is created by the show_cart page when items are added to it. Here's the 
relevant code 
(which immediately precedes the "if($save)" snippet sent in the previous message: 


include ('article_sc_fns.php');

    //new item selected
      $cart = array();
      $article_qty = 0;
      $total_words = 0;      
      $cart[$new] = 1;

When the article is added to the shopping cart the variable is passed to the 
"show_cart" page 
through the URL ("show_cart.php?new=$artID") The original code was written to allow 
for changing 
quantities of items in the cart, which is irrelevant for me, but I've left the code as 
is because it 
doesn't seem to interfere with any other code and is necessary for adding items to the 

I'm checking the cart structure by printing the following code inserted right after 
the "if($save);" 
line (is this the best way to check on the contents of an array?)

while (list($key,$value) = each($cart)) 
      print "Cart = $key: $value<BR>";

This returns "article ID number (an integer) : 1" when new
and "article ID : yes" after the save button has been clicked. 

I tried naming the checkbox "want[$artID]" but as far as I can tell the $want array 
and the $cart 
array are two separate entities and none of the code I've tried seems to work on both, 
even when 
they have the same key ($artID). For example, when I revised the code you sent earlier 

while (list($artID,) = each ($_POST['want']))

it didn't work. Obviously, something else could be interfering.

Re: the line of code you thought odd and asked about:

   $cart[$artID] = $$artID;

I thought it was odd too, and since this is acquired code, I can't explain it. I 
assumed that it 
just resets the artID to its original value.

I'm afraid this message is way too long, and I apologize if it's too much. I hesitated 
questions in the first place because the interaction of the code seemed fairly 
complex, but I'm also 
quite desperate.

Once again, many thanks for your patience and attention.


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