WordPress 3.3 – What You Should Know

WordPress 3.3 Beta 1 is out in the wild and ready for testers. (download)

What You Should Know

As with almost any major version release, there are a lot of fun things to try out. In this edition of WordPress changes, here are a few of the highlights.

Fly Out Admin Menus

The menu navigation has changed from dropdowns for each section, to a menu fly out. Love it? Hate it? It’s a tough call. It’s change and almost everyone is reluctant to change, so there’s going to be some hate somewhere, but I feel it’s an overall improvement to the usability of the dashboard.

Something to note, once you are inside a primary menu header, like Posts or Links, that main section will expand so you have access to all of those items.

The main difference between 3.3 and 3.2.x with these menus is the ability to have other main sections expanded while not presently being in them.

New Media Uploader

A long-neglected area of WordPress has been the media uploader. It hasn’t really been touched in the past few major releases of WordPress and it’s an area that still had quite a few bugs.

Alas, it has been revamped and should be much easier to use. Maybe not bug-free entirely, but it offers better usability.

Improved Admin Bar

The admin bar is something people either use or don’t use. I first found myself not using it at all and still using the in-line edit links for posts and other things. But in the past six months, I’ve found myself actually using it more and more — so I leave it enabled.

The WordPress team has made a few slight improvements to it.

UPDATE on 10/24: Here’s a video of @Nacin talking about the new features of WordPress 3.3.

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