Yesterday, All Souls Day (for Catholics) I downloaded the latest WordPress update, 2.7-Beta 1 and installed it in my new site at Site Blog. The installation, just like the previous WordPress editions, took only less than 5 minutes.

The Dashboard layout has been changed, its prettier than the previous versions, however, personally, I don’t like the Sidebar layout. Most of the time, you have to scoll down your mouse to click on the Settings options. Previous versions (WordPress 2.6.3 below) used the Tab format so all Settings (notably the plugin settings) are displayed on top.

Some cool features however are something that everyone will want to see –

  • Integrated Quickpress in the main Dashboard where you can easily make a post.
  • You can now insert Media (pictures, videos, files) without creating a post – a big improvement.
  • Main Dashboard Screen Option where you can turn-off or turn-on dashboard items like recent comments, wordpress RSS feed items, plugins, incoming links, etc.
  • Ability to reply to comments from the Dashboard (so no need to install a plugin for this one).
  • Integrated comments threading/pagination settings (Alex King’s or Lezter Chan’s plugins are not needed anymore).
  • Sticky Post – you can now create a post or announcement and stick it in the front page even if you have new posts – without the need for a plugin – cool!
  • There’s the Automatic Upgrade Link at the bottom-right screen – yey!
  • Improved Drag and Drop functionality in the Dashboard and Posts, but would you use it often?
  • Now wordpress newbies (like me) can immediately see the other ‘tools’ available in wordpress, like the Import and Export functionalities. Yes, of course you can import your blogspot or other blogs into your wordpress blog – just in case you don’t know yet.
  • And my Top Favorite of all – you can now Upload and Install Plugins from within your WordPress Dashboard – yohoo! So no more downloading, extracting and uploading of plugins outside WordPress.

Still, I would have loved it more if these features were included (probably these were included but I haven’t discovered it yet).

  • Threaded/paginated page options, not just for comments
  • Integrated Polls
  • Automatic post excerpt
  • Automatic post tags/keywords
  • Prettier default themes
  • And how come Theme browsing and installation isn’t included? If it’s possible for Plugins, then it should be okay for Themes don’t you think?
  • Multiple media file uploader
  • And, a shell Theme where a newbie like me can easily (or visually) edit, add components like sidebar, navigation bars to allow easy creation of theme. Hmmm? Is this possible?

Over-all, any new WordPress update is always good news. What more could we ask for such a great piece of FREE blogging (and CMS) software? Thanks, WordPress Team. You can take some sleep now. 🙂