The Wordpress platform has matured into a remarkably powerful
content management platform, and a free one at that. And it just got
better.

Matt Mullenweg today announced the release of the latest version of Wordpress, version 2.8.

Codenamed ‘Baker’ (a nod to trumpeter Chet), WordPress 2.8 includes more than 180 improvements, upgrades and new features. Almost 800 bugs in the last version have been identified and fixed.

So what’s new? It’s faster, for starters, and the widgets interface has been revamped, allowing users to “edit widgets on the fly, have multiple copies of the same widget, drag and drop widgets between sidebars, and save inactive widgets so you don’t lose all their settings”.

There’s an explanatory video here, which explains more:

And what of the future? Mullenweg explains a bit about the view inside his crystal ball:

We’re already thinking hard about the next versions, 2.9 and 3.0. Keep an eye out for improved media handling, better dependency checking, versioning of templates and themes, and of course the fabled merging of WordPress and MU announced at WordCamp San Francisco two weeks ago.”

Gotta love WordPress.