First off, I know very little about networking programming, like, I know how to use cURL from C and how to make simple socket connections.
Basically, I'm looking for a way to encapsulate a persistent command-line program, namely an interpreter, using pipes and send/receive that text via a web interface. It'd be a lot like this: MathCloud - Share Matlab / Octave scripts and data here and do your computing in the cloud. You'd see your past input/output and give new commands to a program running on the server. That site uses Java server pages and I don't want to use Java.
It sounds like it'd be a trivial task but I really have no idea where to start. It'd be dead simple if you just had to run one command in the interpreter and then exit, you could do that with PHP I believe. The trick here is keeping that interpreter open so that all your variables and stuff are persistent.
I mostly want to figure this out on my own, but a point in the right direction would be great. Thanks in advance for reading this.