One of the biggest reasons I love using wordpress for my websites is the constant updates and improvements. As a user of wordpress for the last 4 years or so I’ve seen a lot of changes and every time it’s always been for the better. With every update it gets easier to use with more and more cool features.
On Feb 23rd wordpress released their latest version 3.1 to the public. While this new version isn’t a total overhaul or anything, it still comes with some pretty cool features. I’ve spent most of the weekend updating my wordpress blogs and messing around with the new stuff so I wanted to take a minute to share what I’d found.
While there’s a whole list of changes and updates that you can read about on the wordpress codex, I’m just gonna go over a few of the main ones that I’ve started using or that I think you’ll find usefull.
The Admin Bar
The first and most noticeable change is the admin bar. It’s very similar to the bar on wordpress.com and anyone that’s ever blogged there will be very familiar with it. It’s handy and has a lot of quick navigation for making posts and edits. I’m personally not a big fan of it though as I’m already good at logging into the admin area and like to view my sites the way a regular visitor would. To remove it you just need to go to Users > User Profile and then check that you don’t want it.
Link to Existing Content
This is an awesome feature that I’m just now starting to use. Basicly it lets you quickly find old posts to link to when you’re writing a new post. To use it just highlight a word like you normally would when creating a link and then select “link to existing content” and the search area will drop down and you’ll be able to quickly find and link to your old posts. This can be a huge time saver when you’re trying to find a post you’ve written in the past and want to link to. It’s also great for SEO to have deep linked keywords pointing back to your older posts.
Cleaner Create Post Page
When you go to make a new post for the first time after updating to wordpress 3.1 you might notice that some of your post options and settings are missing. In this new version by default a lot of the options are hidden. In order to view and customize what options show up and where they are placed you just have to click on the top right “screen options” tab and pick what you want to display. You can then drag and drop everything into place as you see fit. This one took me a few tries to get everything in place way I wanted it but now my post page is very clean and easy to use. It shows all the things I use, none of the things I don’t and everything is in place just where I like it.
There are a lot of other updates and changes but most of them are for either developers or multisite users. Again, you can check out the full list here.