A fairly significant update to WordPress is slotted to be released today (09.24.07) with some interesting new features, including:
- Plugin Update Notification
- Improved Post and Draft Management
- Pending Review
- Advanced Visual Editor Buttons
- Pretty URLs
- Updated Default Blogroll
- Other “advanced user” stuff
More details on the features/changes are below:
Plugin Update Notification
Not only are you now notified about new versions of WordPress, you now get notified of new versions of plugins. The only caveat is that the plugins must be hosted on WordPress.org. I personally wonder how this will work in conjunction with a GREAT plugin that I use called “PlugInstaller” which lets you check for new version, activate/deactivate but also fully DELETE a plugin from your plugin directory. This is a great way to easily clean up your old plugins.
It looks like tagging is evolving. So, coupled with Categories, you can now lump in tags, specific to those categories. This assumes that you use a theme that is designed to support tags. What is nice is that it looks like this will be backwards compatible to other popular tagging plugins including: UTW (Ultimate Tag Warrior), Jerome’s Keywords, Simple Tags and Bunny’s Technorati Tags.
Improved Post and Draft Management
The back-end has been changed to help with draft and post management. You can now set multiple filter types (Post Type, Author, Month, Category…) to help you find posts more efficiently. This same change will be available on the Manage Pages section as well.
If you implement any type of workflow related to publishing, you now have the ability to set a status of a post to “Pending Review,” adding to the existing statuses of Published, Draft and Private. While this is far from a CMS (Content Management System), it is getting closer. Some day perhaps there will be workflow added that will route the drafts to various pre-defined authors/reviewers/approvers.
Advanced Visual Editor Buttons
A new graphic will appear in your editing toolbar that allows you to show/hide the Advanced Toolbar. This Advanced Toolbar has functions including: underline, justified text, shadows, clean up messy code etc. This is a well-needed addition, in my opinion
This addition will allow you to strip out WWW from your URL if you don’t require it. It is all based on your blog address and should also help with redirecting partial post URLs to the full URL. Another nice thing is that if you change a Post Slug (what usually shows as your link to the article if you configured your blog that way), a redirect will be created. This should be very helpful in eliminating 404 errors on your site. Might be good for Search Engines as well. I just installed a plugin called “Redirection” which does a lot of 404 and permalink management. It’s a good plugin!
Updated Default Blogroll
Some additions and changes to the default blogroll (the one that shows up on your dash when you log in to the administration. There are sections now for Development, Documentation, Plugins, Ideas, Support, Themes and Planet WordPress.
“Advanced User” Stuff
Briefly, some things of interests:
- Updated to jQuery 1.1.4 (which I actually just did myself to fix a navigation issue on Firefox 2 on my theme)
- Improved import from MovableType/TypePad and WordPress
- Multiple category widgets
- Cleanup of unused admin fields in db
- Work done on AtomPub and Atom 1.0 feed and publishing protocols
- SEO-friendly URL redirection
- TinyMCE updated to 184.108.40.206, Prototype to 1.5.1 and script.aculo.us at 1.7.1 beta 2
- Pluggable Dashboard feeds and Pluggable Feed Library
- Other fun stuff too
I’m looking forward to this release. However, I sure hope that it has been tested out well. As always, I recommend backing up your database (I use the plugin called “WP-DBManager” which works great for this) and back up your entire blog directory (especially wp-config.php and wp-content). Usually, a few days after a big release, there are several minor releases to fix issues and security holes so you might want to hold off. I probably won’t but I will be ready to roll-back if I need to.
HTD says: New WP 2.3 looks promising!