Exciting new things in WordPress 2.8?

WordPress 2.8 is slated to be released late this month. Unfortunately, I’ve heard a lot of talk that 2.8 isn’t anything to get excited about. People are saying that it doesn’t have a lot of new features. As a matter of fact, in the WordPress Weekly PodcastEpisode 49 Were You Fooled?, David Peralty even said that it only had “stuff that should have been in WordPress already”.

While I agree that 2.8 will have fewer noticeable new features than 2.7 did, it definitely has plenty packed into it. First, more than 270 tickets have been closed for 2.8, over 240 of those were set to “fixed”. Many of the changes in WordPress 2.8 are cleaning up what was added in 2.7, as well as strengthening the foundations of the core code.

The widgets code has been completely reworked and all the core widgets have been updated to use the new WP_Widget class. Personally, I think it’s pretty exciting! Previously, writing widgets that followed the multi-widget pattern (the ones that can be used more than once, like the text widget) was a real pain. Using the old widgets methodology, the text widget was 104 lines of code, and rather confusing. The new WP_Widget class has reduced that to 39 lines of considerably simpler code. I’m looking forward to updating my WordPress Twitter Widget, Gallery Widget Pro, and Get Free Web Designs Widget. I also plan to release a few new widgets using the new framework.

Another new feature in 2.8 that I find important, is support in the Admin UI for taxonomy descriptions. Currently in the WordPress admin interface, you can add descriptions to categories, but not for tags or any custom taxonomy. Since categories, tags, and other terms are all the same now, there’s really no reason you shouldn’t be able to control the description of all of them. The patch that was committed (which I submitted), adds a description box to the tag/taxonomy forms in the admin section, adds a description column to the tag and custom taxonomy tables in the admin, and adds two new helper functions for use in your theme called tag_description and term_description.

Here are some other things I find interesting that are new in 2.8:

In the end, the changes may not be as flashy as they were in 2.5 or 2.7, but 2.8 is a solid step forward for WordPress.

About Aaron D. Campbell

Owner and lead developer at BlueDog, Aaron has 10+ years of web development experience, it a regular core contributor to the WordPress project, and has released many WordPress plugins.
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15 thoughts on “Exciting new things in WordPress 2.8?

  1. Just saw this update on Twitter and seems like wordpress is keeping up its promise by giving the best of feature with every new release.

  2. Pingback: Exciting new things in WordPress 2 8 | Joint Pain Relief

  3. I was planing to update to WordPress 2.8, but recently few of my clients reported lots of problems like
    Internal server Error
    Broken Permalinks and broken theme issue..
    So for now
    I will wait for some more reviews and issues before I will upgrade my blog to wordpress 2.8

  4. Maple says:

    thanks for you to share . it is so useful for us

  5. Well explained features of wordpress 2.8

  6. I think on v 2.8, dashboard is more impressive…
    Very excellent, all of bug were fixed….
    I love WP….

  7. Many bugs was fixed…..
    On this version, to much improved…….

  8. I like this version.
    But, with mobile phone, we can not edit the Widget…. :(

  9. Abol Joe says:

    Interesting !, I will consider to use wordpress 2.8 ..

  10. Digitalmalay says:

    It is said that downloading ver2.8 directly from wp site is better than upgrading from your wp dashboard.You may end up with fake trojan inside your system.

  11. It is said by whom? There was an issue a while back where a vulnerability was used to give a bad download link to a fake new versions of WP, but that security hole has long since been closed, and that was before the dashboard-upgrader anyway.

  12. Aaron Wall says:

    Great helpful information, Thanks for this nice post, just subscribed your feed, hope you will update new post soon.
    keep it up.


  13. John says:

    It is said that downloading ver2.8 directly from wp site is better than upgrading from your wp dashboard.You may end up with fake trojan inside your system.

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