Last night I upgraded ishootshows.com to WordPress 2.5, which was officially released March 30, 2008. For the uninitiated, WordPress is a content management system and blogging platform that powers your favorite site for concert photography.
This latest release boasts a host of new features, including a new, lean GUI that streamlines a lot of common tasks. Here's a quick breakdown of my first impressions.
I love the improved functionality and the ability to customize with widgets. In particular, Automattic's Stats plugin gets a new lease on life for me.
One has the option to choose the color scheme of the admin interface in WP 2.5, and “Fresh” is entirely appropriate. I'm digging the softer blues, while the rusty orange is a nice accent for creating hierarchy.
I can appreciate a lot of the interface changes to WP 2.5, which strips down the experience to concentrate on the core tasks.
The downside to some of this is that it now takes an additional click more to access some info that was previous grouped with more central features.
One example of this is that draft posts are now accessed from the Manage tab, instead of being accessible from the default Write screen.
Right from the Dashboard, the Raison d'etre for WP, blogging, is pulled the forefront, and users are immediately given the option to write a new post or page. Despite the above gripe about the separation of drafts, this accessibility is great.
Writing: Media Integration
The ability to easily drop in video and audio via the “Add Media” icons is a great addition with WP 2.5. Now that embedding YouTube just got easier, I'm definitely going to take advantage of this feature.
I dig it. While there's no real outward affect on one's blog, WordPress 2.5 does deliver some genuinely interesting backend features that have the potential for more effective content creation and management.
I'm looking forward to seeing what future WP versions bring, and especially what new Dashboard widgets will be rolled out over the next few weeks and months.