This is exactly what I am attempting to accomplish: If I am adding or editing publish I wish to operate a function that puts publish_id, all of the custom area values and category ids with a other db table I have produced. Among the finest to understand how to execute this function and just how to obtain the values.

Place the following inside your functions.php file of the theme. It'll operate on both save in addition to well update. Since you will find the publish ID, that you can do anything you want.

function do_my_stuff($post_ID)  {
   //do my stuff here;
   return $post_ID;

add_action('save_post', 'do_my_stuff');