Sorry for the nerdy post today. We’ll get back to youth ministry next week.
WordPress 2.8 released yesterday, and this upgrade addresses one of the biggest shortfalls in WordPress: the widget interface. It used to be possible to see all of your sidebars and widgets at once and drag and drop your widgets straight from one sidebar to another. I believe it’s been since version 2.3 that that functionality was lost. Since then, you had to view your sidebars one at a time, and moving a widget between one sidebar and another was very cumbersome.
WordPress 2.8 now puts all of your sidebars back on the same screen together, allowing you to easily drag and drop from one to another. There is also a new section for “Inactive Widgets” that will allow you to remove a widget from your sidebar, but keep your custom code or settings within that widget for later. You can also have an unlimited number of each widget active in your sidebar, another big plus that will help solve a few problems I’ve run into.
There’s some other good stuff in this latest version of WordPress:
- Syntax highlighting and function lookup built into plugin and theme editors – Very helpful for people who like to play around and tinker with code.
- Browse the theme directory and install themes from the admin interface – While good in theory, we’ll have to see how well this works in practice.
- Allow the dashboard widgets to be arranged in up to four columns – Not that big of a deal to me, I don’t think. I’ll have to play around and see.
- Allow configuring the number of items to show on management pages with an option in Screen Options – I do like this. On our church website, we have about 30 different pages. Now I can set that page to display all the pages at once instead of having to click through and hunt for the page I want.
- Support timezones and automatic daylight savings time adjustment – Finally.
- Faster loading of admin pages via script compression and concatenation – I’ll just take their word for it here.
WordPress just keeps getting better and better. I’ve written about using it for building your own church website, and now there’s even more reasons to switch. Check out the video below for some of the highlights.