WordPress 4.0 Now Available

Today WordPress has released it’s latest major update, “Benny”, named after the great Benny Goodman:

There are a lot of updates here, primarily to the post editing workflow. Let’s take a look at some of the bigger ones.

Expanding Editing Window

This is an update that I’ve been wanting for a long time now. The WordPress post editing window will not automatically expand as you type, which means no more internal scroll bars in the window. This seems like a small thing, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been frustrated by the wrong part of the browser scrolling when I’m trying to write a post in the back-end.

Embedded Content Now Shows in the Editor

In the past, whenever you embedded any third-party content into a WordPress post, the content itself didn’t show. Instead ,you simply got a gray box of approximately the same size. Now, content from outside website, like embedded YouTube videos, now function completely within the editing window. You can even play the video from within the editor. In addition, WordPress is also supporting a larger number of services that you can embed by default, which is always nice.

Media Library Grid View

WordPress 4.0 Updates the Media Library

The media library now offers an endlessly scrolling grid view of images, which is both attractive and makes for much faster browsing. You can switch back to the classic list view if you prefer. Within the grid view, clicking on an image will open a detail view panel in a modal window, and from there you can quickly and easily flit between images without having to exit back to the media grid.

Plugin Install Visual Overhaul

WordPress 4.0 Updates the Plugin Library

Like the media library, the Plugin screen has also had a massive visual overhaul, giving you much more information about each plugin at-a-glance, including the average review and number of downloads. This also makes better use of the thumbnail imagery for plugins, giving it a much richer look.

WordPress Install Language Options

Finally, WordPress is now offering it’s famous, five-minute install in a large variety of languages. While this might seem like a small thing to those of us who are comfortable with English, it promises to open up WordPress to an ever wider audience than it currently enjoys.

A Lots More in WordPress 4.0

Of course, these are just a few of the bigger updates with WordPress 4.0. There are hundreds of other smaller changes, bug fixes, and improvement throughout the CMS. If you’d like to learn more, check out the entry for WordPress 4.0 in the Codex.

2 Responses to “WordPress 4.0 Now Available”

  1. Evan

    Thanks…sitting here trying to figure out if I should pull the trigger on our website. This helps me feel safe knowing everything won’t get nuked in the process.

    • David

      You might notice some small regression issues – I found one on one of my sites. Usually after a major release like this, WordPress puts out a series of smaller releases that correct any issues introducted. I’d watch out for several more updates in the coming weeks.

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