What is the best way to handle site navigation?
When I first started learning web development I had html-files which I linked to. Later on I sent variables through the url and used a php-script with $_GET to load the appropriate content. Let's say that the url looked like this: http://www.example.com/?page=home. So the user was always located at the index page but the server were including different content depending upon the ?page variable.
Are some ways worse to handle navigation than others? Is the last mentioned way ineffective?
I've always wondered about nodes (at least I think it's called that). That saying that if I want to load a users profile page, the aforementioned way of doing it would like something like: http://www.example.com/?user=someone. But then if I have understood nodes correctly you could write http://www.example.com/someone/ and still be directed to the correct page through a script or something.
Please help me understand web navigation better and maybe teach me or post a link to a good tutorial about nodes because I can't seem to find any.