Automattic, the maker of the popular WordPress open-source blogging software, made a big announcement last week - the release of WordPress 2.7.
As a WordPress user myself, this was exciting news because WordPress 2.7 is a major update.
If you're already familiar with prior versions of WordPress, the first thing you'll notice with WordPress 2.7 is the brand new 'Coltrane' interface. I took the time this weekend to upgrade one of the blogs I manage to WordPress 2.7 and a few words that describe the new interface - sleek, smooth, gorgeous.
But Coltrane is more than just a pretty face. Form is nice but function is even nicer and Coltrane is a huge improvement in terms of function. Navigation is much more intuitive, completing common tasks is made much more efficient and there's better use of real estate. Even better - it's highly customizable. Elements can be toggled on and off and dragged and dropped to suit your tastes.
But a snazzy interface is only one part of the WordPress 2.7 release. There are new features, including sticky posts, direct posting and commenting from the dashboard and new functionality around media uploads. There have also been some updates to the WordPress API as well as the usual bug fixes.
All in all, WordPress 2.7 is a wonderful release. My only complaint is that, in the past, releases have often contained changes that require a reworking of plug-in code and themes. Since I primarily use WordPress MU and an MU version of WordPress 2.7 has not yet been released, I have not yet been able to test the plug-ins I wrote and custom themes I created for WordPress 2.6. Given the significant changes in the interface, I suspect that some changes may be required.
But for a release like WordPress 2.7, any modifications that need to be made will be well worth the effort.
WordPress 2.7 can be downloaded from the WordPress website. If you haven't given WordPress a whirl yet, now is definitely a good time.