WordPress 2.5 coming next week with hot new features like the Media Library, Automatic Upgrades, Plugin installer, Avatars, and more. WordPress going social? I thought it was already, didn’t you? More blogs hacked – update now! WordPress.com cleans out 80,000 splogs. Blogging in the Philippines. WordCamp Dallas weeks away. And more WordPress news.
New Features in WordPress 2.5 I’ve been alerting you to many new features in WordPress 2.5 like the new Media Library, automatic upgrades and improved tag features, and here are some more goodies to look forward to with next week’s release:
- Search Improved: The long requested improvements to the WordPress built-in search functions have been implemented and search now includes Pages as well as posts. Those using Plugins or search add-ons might want to try it out and compare which does the best job for your search efforts, though some search Plugins might not work with the new improvements.
- Avatars Built-in: Ryan Boren makes it official, avatars using the Gravatar Plugin is now incorporated into WordPress. Weblog Tools Collection wrote up the information on the new
get_avatar()function to help WordPress Theme developers update their Themes and those who want to write Plugins based on the new avatar function.
- Upload More Than One Image: The new Media Library will finally return back to pre-WordPress 1.5 days with multiple file uploading (the crows goes wild!).
- New Image Size Options: With the addition of a “medium” size, WordPress bloggers will now have thumbnail, medial, and full size options to resize their images on the go.
- WordPress Plugins Installer: Developers are working overtime to add an easy to use Plugin Installer, which should also include alerts and announcements of updates or advisories about the Plugin on the WordPress Administration Panels.
- Improved Embedding and Searching: WordPress 2.5 offers improved embedding without the need for Plugins to handle images, audio, video, and more from various off-site services and self-hosted. The Media Library also will feature searching, so you don’t have to flip through the numerous pages and pages of thumbnails to find the image you want to reuse.
- No More ALIGN: WordPress Theme designers are required now to include CSS classes to accommodate the new alignment options for images and video: align-left, align-right, and align-center. They also need to include padding around image and video files so the text doesn’t squish against them, and users don’t come using to the Support Forums asking how to fix this.
- Don’t Touch! I’m Editing Here: A problem many multiple bloggers blogs have had with WordPress is the inability to tell when two people are working on the same post at the same time. They’ve just added a new feature that tests for “post edit collisions” and notifies you if someone is working on the same post as you are.
- Plugin and Theme Authors Get More Hooks: A serious attempt to totally “hook up” WordPress has been underway in the last few versions, with even more in this version. Adam Brown has put together WordPress Hooks Database in an attempt to track all of the new and deprecated hooks. If you are a WordPress Plugin or Theme author, it’s time to get up close and personal with WordPress Hooks.
WordPress 2.5 Development: Last week’s WordPress Weekly Digest continues to show the hard work and changes the developers are making to get WordPress 2.5 ready for release next week. These include the addition of the avatar/Gravatar, security improvements, new hooks, improvements to future post status checks, continued work on the automated installer for Plugins, and a lot of improvements to the new Media Library Panel.
The news from the WordPress Development Updates reports a lot of cleaning up of the styles and looks, work on the Plugin updater, making sure every button does what it says it’s supposed to do, fixing post edit collision detection so you get a notice if someone is editing the same post, improvements in AJAX interaction when moderating comments, and a lot more bug fixing and feature improvements.
Webware and WordPress: The annual Webware 100 awards once again includes
WordPress as a finalist, but this year, it’s in the Photography and Publishing Category. WordPress won last year, so go vote for your favorite publishing webware – WordPress, of course.
WordPress Going Social: Matt Mullenweg and the Automattic team are now turning WordPress into a social networking source, making your blog the source of all things social rather than an accessory to other products and services, as it should be. Finally, social is coming home to roost. In that effort, they’ve assimilated BuddyPress, a Plugin that turns WordPressMU into a social network, and its creator, Andy Peatling. Recently, Rashmisinha offered tips for improving the social on WordPress.com, and now it’s the talk of the social-o-sphere.
WordPress Logo Icon Pack: Want to spread some WordPress love on your blog? AOD Design offers a WordPress logo icon pack with a variety of colorful circles with the famous W.
WordPress Podcast: WordPress Podcast: Episode 36 with Charles Stricklin and Jonathan Bailey covered licensing the WordPress Codex, the online manual for WordPress Users, preparations for WordCamp Dallas, WordPress.com news that WordPress 2.5 should be appearing soon, plagiarism and copyright theft issues, and more WordPress news, Themes, and Plugins.
WordPress Weekly with Jeffro2pt0: This week’s WordPress Weekly Episode with Jeffro2pt0 includes an interview with Brandon Rosage, webmaster of MVN.com, a WordPress sports site, and discussions on the future of web applications from the recent conference, Plugin security issues, the history of WordPress, WordPress tips, and the growing issue of WordPress Themes – paid or free.
Last Week’s WordPress Wednesday News: Last week’s WordPress Wednesday News report covered WordPress 2.5 in Two Weeks, New Hot Media Library, Instant Upgrades, Theme Designers Lack Inspiration, More Plugin Vulnerabilities Found, for those who just can’t get enough WordPress news.
WordPress Security News
Upgrade WordPress Now: Yes, WordPress 2.5 is due out next week. More importantly, there were reports this week of WordPress blogs which haven’t upgraded to WordPress 2.3.3 being hacked. It’s a choice. Wait until March 10 and your blog might be fine. Upgrade now and sleep in peace, and still be ready for the new version. It’s a quick upgrade. Is the safety of your blog worth the risk?
More WordPress Plugins Reveal Security Vulnerabilities and Flaws: Blog Security reports on a number of WordPress Plugins with security vulnerabilities and flaws. For more information, check the report and the Plugin author’s site for updated and/or how to fix the issues. Until then, it is highly recommended you deactivate the Plugins. The list and other information on WordPress Plugin security issues include:
- WP Photo Album – WPPA
- Search Unleashed
- Sniplets 1.1.2 (and possibly other versions)
- Simple Forum
- WordSpew AJAX Shoutbox
WordPress Security News: The most recent news on general WordPress security issues includes:
- According to Blog Security, the WP-no-version Plugin has been updated and now will remove the WordPress version information for non-authenticated users only.
- Ian Kallen of Tecchnorati warns that they’ve seen a number of blogs “exploited by a recently announced WordPress vulnerability” and recommend upgrading NOW not later.
- Blog Security reports on a WordPress CSRF vulnerability described as a Cross Site Request Forgery. Investigations are ongoing.
WordPress on Your Calendar
WordCamp Dallas: The WordPress Podcast has a podcast announcement about Dallas WordCamp in Texas on March 29-30, 2008. Get the news out and get registered now! If you are a WordPress fan living in Texas, they are looking for volunteers to help spread the world that WordPress is coming to Texas with an exciting line-up of speakers talking blogging and WordPress.
Blogging Summit in Philippines: iBlog4: The Fourth Philippine Blogging Summit on April 26, 2008, is a free blogging conference with speakers talking about starting a blog, problogging, student blogging, photoblogging, blog comics, vlogs, political blogging, regional blogging, advocacy blogging, and, of course, a lot of WordPress.
WordPress Meetup or WordCamp Near You? If you are putting together a WordPress event, please email me so I can publicize it here. If there is a WordCamp near you, go. If you are interested in setting up a WordCamp, stay tuned for news and information on to bring a WordCamp event near you.
- WordPress 2.5 Release – March 10, 2008
- The New York City WordPress Meeting – March 15, 2008
- The Nashville WordPress March Meeting – March 22, 2008
- WordCamp Dallas – March 29, 2008 (Registration Required)
- WordPress Denmark Meetup for WordPress 2.5 at Advice – April 6, 2008
- iBlog4: The Fourth Philippine Blogging Summit – April 26, 2008
- WordPress fans social gathering in Austin, Texas – May 13, 2008
- PodCamp Atlanta 2008 – May 17, 2008
- WordCamp 2008 in San Francisco – July 2008 (should be great)
WordPress Plugins and Themes News
WordPress as Membership Directory – A New Kind of Social: With all the talk of WordPress getting more social, WPDesigner offers “WordPress as a Membership Directory”, a step up from the WP Contact Manager WordPress Theme.
Viper007Bond’s Clean Archives Reloaded WordPress Plugin Reloaded: Viper007Bond’s Clean Archives Reloaded WordPress Plugin has been recoded to speed up interaction with the database and reduce the number of database queries, and work “into the future” with future versions of WordPress.
Is Your Plugin Ready for WordPress 2.5? Joost De Valk offers “WordPress 2.5 Plugin Settings Pages Style Guide”, with tips and information you need to know about how your Plugin’s Administration Panel menus may be changed or broken with the new WordPress Administration Panel structure and layout. See Migrating Plugins and Themes, also, in the WordPress Codex.
Are You Ready for WordPress 2.5? I recently published Are You Ready for WordPress 2.5? on the Blog Herald listing some of the new features and changes in WordPress that bloggers and WordPress Plugin and Theme authors need to be aware of so they are ready for the upcoming release of WordPress, one of the most anticipated versions in a long time.
Tracking WordPress Compatibility: It’s often difficult to track what Plugin and Theme is compatible with which WordPress version. In the WordPress Codex are two “master” pages that list all the various compatibilities: WordPress Theme Compatibilities and WordPress Plugin Compatibilities. No matter which version you are using, and in preparation for the next version of WordPress, add these to your WordPress resource list to check before you upgrade.
Plugin and Theme Compatibility Issues for Authors and Designers: If you have a WordPress Plugin or Theme, see Migrating Plugins and Themes for tips on updating your Plugin or Theme for the latest version of WordPress. Once updated, make sure to include it on the WordPress Compatibility lists so users will know which version is updated and ready to work with the latest WordPress.
Interesting WordPress Plugins: I’m constantly amazed at how many creative and useful WordPress Plugins are released each week. Aren’t you?
- SEO Friendly Images WordPress Plugin helps those who can’t remember to add the proper ALT and TITLE attributes to their images and adds them for you.
- Downloads Manager WordPress Plugin is another simply downloads manager that allows password protection and click/download controls.
- Sort By Comments WordPress Plugin allows customization of the order of post comments and the ability to add a most recently commented posts list to the front page of the WordPress blog.
- Weasel’s HTML Bios WordPress Plugin stops WordPress from automatically stripping HTML from the User Profile Panel’s bio and author description form, which allows inclusion of links, HTML tags, and CSS selectors.
WordPress Techniques and Tips
Multiple WordPress Blogs on a Single Domain: A problem many have with installing multiple WordPress blogs on a single domain is the issue of the permalink structure. Exile Designs offers tips for fixing the permalink issues.
Tumblr and Microblogging with WordPress: Tumblr Instant Post Bookmarklet for WordPress Blogs allows WordPress bloggers to publish to Tumblr. The QuickPost to Tumblr WordPress Plugin goes a step further allowing you to publish to Tumblr from the Administration Panels. For more information on integrating WordPress and Tumblr and the concept of microblogging, see Microblogging Tumblelog: Pros and Conts of Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook, and StumbleUpon.
Cache Versioned Tags: Andy Skelton talks about cache with versioned tags, a technique that caches tags for long lengths of time incrementally instead of on a regular schedule, flushing out the old with the new when necessary, which has many speed and database benefits, though it’s still in the testing phases with WordPress.
WordPress Help: If you are looking for help on using WordPress, begin by visiting the WordPress Codex, the online manual for WordPress Users, then searching the WordPress Support Forums or WordPress.com Forums, depending upon your version.
WordPress Tips and Techniques: Here are some featured articles and videos from around the WordPress Community:
- Separating comments and pings in WordPress
- Creating Two-Tiered Conditional Navigation in WordPress
- How to set up new Users
- TubeTorial – How to Increase Comments and Page Views With One Quick and Easy Plugin in WordPress Video
Want to Write a WordPress Tip and See It Here? If you would like your WordPress tip and technique included in this list, see Tips For Writing Good WordPress Tips and Writing and Publishing Code In Your WordPress Blog Posts. When its ready, contact me at [email protected].
WordPress 2.5 Changes Coming to WordPress.com: Any day now, WordPress.com users will begin to see changes in the WordPress Administration Panels, often mistakenly called the Dashboard. These will be the first implementation of the latest version of WordPress which features a new interface as well as faster access and publishing times, a new Media Library uploader for images and files, a Widgetized Dashboard panel for customizing the first panel of the Administration Panels, and much, much more.
WordPress.com Splog Cleaning: In recent discussions trying to estimate the number of splogs on the web, an interesting bit of information came out about WordPress.com. Of the recent reported number of registered WordPress.com blogs (2,523,000), Automattic’s staff recently cleared out more than 800,000 blogs, which appears to be more than Google has done with Blogger recently.
WordPress.com February Statistics: The February Wrap-up for WordPress.com is in with news that 245,329 blogs were created and 432,478 new users registered. For a look at how social WordPress.com blogs are already, 4,961,330 comments were tracked. The number of “active” blogs, an indication that there was human activity on the blog, continues to grow steadily at 726,789 active blogs in February, up from about 500,000 in November, the last Wrap-Up announcement. On the downside, news is out that WordPress.com was hit with a DOS (denial-of-service) attack which caused some unplanned downtime to deal with the criminal activity. They are working with their upstream providers to prevent future attacks.
Blognails: Take an image thumbnail and link it to your blog posts and you have Blognails, a fun navigational technique that has been around for ages but Bold Lentil decided to implement it in a WordPress.com blog. Instructions are found in Roll Your Own Blognails. Full version WordPress blogs can use a WordPress Plugin such as Post Attached Image, Excerpt Image Link, Post Thumbs. Related Post With Thumbnail, or Category Images.
What’s Going On With WordPress.com? If you want to find out more about what’s happening on WordPress.com blogs, check out the front page of the WordPress.com site and the popular WordPress.com Blogs of the Day listing where you can find thousands of blogs in dozens of languages blogging on a wide range of topics.
New To WordPress.com: If you are new to blogging on WordPress.com, check out this basic guide on What Do I Do With My New WordPress.com Blog?.
WordPress Community News
Vote for WordPress Ideas: There is still time to get your vote in for ideas on upcoming versions of WordPress in the The WordPress Ideas section. Why not take advantage of it and add your voice to the vote.
Using WordPress in Your Blog’s Name: It’s about respect. Please use WordPress names right because WordPress is a trademark and you are not allowed to use WordPress in your blog’s domain name or URL unless you have permission of Automattic and WordPress. Also, remember, it’s spelled “WordPress” not “WordPress”. Oh, and Plugin is Plugin, not plug-in (what you put into a wall electrical socket).
WordPress Installed For Free: Installing WordPress for Free (aka Install4Free WordPress) is a free, volunteer-driven service is limited to personal blogs only, and they help only with installations, not upgrades.
Even More WordPress News?
Past WordPress Wednesday News Reports
- WordPress Wednesday News: WordPress 2.5 in Two Weeks, New Hot Media Library, Instant Upgrades, Theme Designers Lack Inspiration, More Plugin Vulnerabilities Found
- WordPress Wednesday News: WordPress 2.5 News, Colleges and Schools Love WordPressMU, Viddler Meets WordPress, Theme Buyers Beware, Columns in Blog Posts, Feeds Without Plugins
- WordPress Wednesday News: WordPress 2.5 Live Reports, WWW or Not to WWW, 16,000 Post Migration, MT Does WP, WP Does Kazakhstan, and Gets Mugged
- WordPress Wednesday News: WordPress 2.3.3 Security Must Upgrade, Plugins Vulnerable, Automatic Upgrades, and More
- WordPress Wednesday News: WordCamp Hamburg Success, Automatic Upgrades Coming, $5,000 Bounty, Prologue Theme, and WordPress Wins Again
WordPress News Sources
- WordPress Planet
- WordPress Development Blog
- WordPress.com Blog
- Weblog Tools Collection
- BloggingPro’s WordPress News and Tips
- The WordPress Podcast
- Lorelle on WordPress
- Planet WordPress from Planet Ozh
- WordPress Publisher Blog
If You Are Reading This: If you are reading this blog post NOT on the Blog Herald or from within your feed reader, it is being used against the copyright policy of the copyright owners. Please report it immediately so action may be taken to break some heads and feed scraping blogs.
Each Wednesday on Blog Herald is WordPress Wednesday, featuring the news around the WordPress Community. If you have a WordPress news item or tip to suggest, please contact me at this special email address: [email protected]
Author: Lorelle VanFossen
The author of Lorelle on WordPress and the fast-selling book, Blogging Tips: What Bloggers Won’t Tell You About Blogging, as well as several other blogs, Lorelle VanFossen has been blogging for over 15 years, covering blogging, WordPress, travel, nature and travel photography, web design, web theory and development extensively as web technologies developed.