How can I learn more about server-side technologies?
My answer to How can I learn more about server-side technologies? on Quora
Get yourself a VPS, set it up from scratch and run some non-critical websites on it (nothing with private user data since you can’t be sure you’ll set it up securely). Both Slicehost and Linode offer a good set of guides to a whole host of common tasks:
Running a server “live” on the internet is the best way to learn, provided you do so responsibly. Even better, start by running virtual machine servers on your own computer using VMWare or VirtualBox.
Getting Django set up is an excellent learning project :)