I'm going to install PHP and Apache, and instructions say: "You need a respectable ANSI-C compiler and build system,two items that are available through all of the major distributions' package managers", so I checked out Ubuntu's synaptic package manager, but I'm not sure whether these two are enabled by default.
If you know this little about the build process, I wouldn't go compiling Apache and PHP.
Instead, install Ubuntu's precompiled packages like this:
sudo apt-get install apache2 php5
If you still want to go ahead with compilation, the other answers are what you're looking for.
In Ubuntu the meta package that will install the tools you need is called
build-essential. It will install
make, and some header files.
As far as I know, this should be as simple as sudo apt-get install gcc to install the GNU C compiler which should work for your purposes.
You may also need build-essential.
Well, you will need