The Jazz Musicians of WordPress

May 11, 2010 | 1 Comment

Carmen McRae

All the major WordPress releases are named after famous jazz musicians. For example, pictured above is Carmen McRae, who was celebrated in WordPress version 2.9. Want to know more about all the artists WordPress honored over time? WPMU.org has a great tip: music discovery engine Last.fm actually has a tag for that, called wordpress-release-jazz.

  • 1.0 Miles Davis
  • 1.2 Charles Mingus
  • 1.5 Billy Strayhorn
  • 2.0 Duke Ellington
  • 2.1 Ella Fitzgerald
  • 2.2 Stan Getz
  • 2.3 Dexter Gordon
  • 2.5 Michael Brecker
  • 2.6 McCoy Tyner
  • 2.7 John Coltrane
  • 2.8 Chet Baker
  • 2.9 Carmen McRae

This means you can listen to these musicians’ songs, watch videos, and check out similar artists with on that site. It’s a great fusion of geekiness and music that the WordPress developers, especially Matt Mullenweg, established, and that aficionados of either or both can enjoy.

See the WordPress Roadmap for a complete list of the jazz musicians honored per release. I wonder whose music we’ll be enjoying when WordPress 3.0 drops.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , ,

WordPress 2.9.2

February 16, 2010 | 1 Comment

WordPress 2.9.2 fixes a bug that lets logged in users see trashed posts created by other authors. It’s not a very urgent update, only to whose who find the Trash bug an inconvenience, but it’s still wise to download the latest version whenever you can. This should give you ample time to backup first.

Haven’t used the new Trash feature before? Here’s a walkthrough on it and here’s how to customize it.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , ,

New in WP 2.9: Transform URLs to embed codes

January 28, 2010 | No Comments Yet

A very useful new feature in WordPress 2.9 is oEmbed support, which lets you display video and other embed objects with less hassle: all you need to do paste the URL and you’re all set.

First, make sure this feature is enabled under Settings > Media > Attempt to automatically embed all plain text URLs. There’s also an option to set a maximum width and height for the embed objects. Next, create or edit posts like you normally would, and enter the URL in its own line. Save your post and hit the Preview button to check if it’s working.

For example, pasting a YouTube URL (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mKtdTJP_GUI) automatically generates this:

If you don’t want WordPress to create embed codes from URLs automatically, use the shortcode.

WordPress has a list of sites you can do this with, which includes sites like YouTube, Flickr, and WordPress.tv. More information about adding support can be found at the Codex page.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , ,

WordPress 2.9.1

January 5, 2010 | No Comments Yet

A beta and release candidate later, WordPress 2.9.1 is finally out. It addresses several issues including errors with cron, pingbacks, and scheduled posts. The entire list of fixes can be viewed here.

If you still have reservations about moving up to WP 2.9, this release should stabilize the upgrade now.

Download WordPress 2.9.1 or upgrade from within your admin panel. Interesting fact: WP 2.9 has passed one million downloads already!

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

How to use the WP.me URL shortener for self-hosted WordPress

December 21, 2009 | No Comments Yet

WordPress.com users have enjoyed the WP.me URL shortener since August, but here’s a neat discovery for self-hosted WordPress users, courtesy of the folks at WP Tavern: if you upgrade to WordPress 2.9 and install the WordPress.com Stats plugin, you can get to use WP.me too. Once you type in a post title, a “Get Shortlink” button will appear right beside the “Edit” button for the post permalink. For example, the clicking on said button gives us the shortlink http://wp.me/pely2-Aq.

What do you think of the requirements? Stats buffs probably won’t mind grabbing yet another analytics plugin if they haven’t already. But upgrading to WordPress 2.9 this early might still be discouraging.

What exactly is more attractive about choosing to use WP.me over, say, native post ID-based permalinks instead? Probably the number of characters you can save with a much shorter URL.

But take note that both Google and Facebook have just rolled out their own URL shorteners in goo.gl and fb.me. Seems like the URL shortening arena is getting more serious competition than ever.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

WordPress 2.9

December 19, 2009 | No Comments Yet

WordPress 2.9 is finally here! Just days after the first release candidate comes out, the final version of the much-awaited WordPress upgrade has arrived. Looks like Christmas came early this year.

WP 2.9 been dubbed “Carmen” after jazz vocalist Carmen McRae, and is the most feature-packed upgrade to date. The most popular mentioned are: the Trash, a built-in image editor, batch plugin updating and compatibility checking, and easier video embeds using oEmbed. The whole list is detailed in the Trac, of course.

Backup and upgrade now!

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , , ,

WordPress 2.9 Release Candidate 1

December 17, 2009 | No Comments Yet

WordPres 2.9 RC 1 is out. And you know what that means: it’s only a matter of time before the final version comes out. The dev team tells us that there are a couple of things we can do to get ready when 2.9 finally drops: check out the latest features as listed in the Codex, and contribute to the plugin compatibility checker.

Changes since the beta releases are listed here.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , ,

WordPress 2.9 Beta 2

December 3, 2009 | No Comments Yet

Round two of the WordPress 2.9 betas is out. Grab it here, and check out the changes at the Trac. As usual, download and install only if you’re fine with potentially unstable software.

If you’re running beta 1 already, just auto-upgrade from with your WP admin panel.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , ,

WordPress 2.9 Beta 1

November 17, 2009 | No Comments Yet

And the road to WordPress 2.9 begins. WP 2.9 beta 1 is out.

It’s also the best way to check out what’s new, but if you can’t be bothered with a mere beta version yet, at least take this as an early heads up that you’ll be upgrading soon enough. So get ready!

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , ,

10 things coming in WordPress 2.9

November 12, 2009 | 1 Comment

We’ve talked about WordPress 2.9 quite a bit already, but Aaron Brazell of Technosailor has a comprehensive list of new features and things to expect when that upgrade notice arrives on your dashboard. He classifies each item according area: themes, plugins, users, and system.

Another important thing to note is that in WordPress 3.0, running PHP 5 will be a requirement. That’s not until a several months from now, but it’s good to be ready.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , ,

“Hello world!” post gets a makeover in WordPress 2.9

November 9, 2009 | No Comments Yet

Weblog Tools Collection reports on the recently agreed upon move to modify the default blog post that comes with every new WordPress installation, the one entitled “Hello world!” People on the WordPress Hackers mailing list thought it would be better to add more meaningful information and links on the starting post, which serves as a welcome mat to every new WordPress user.

A draft of the post’s contents can be viewed here, and will be integrated come WordPress version 2.9. Super convenient!

Leave a Comment | Tags: , ,

Upgrade multiple plugins at once in WordPress 2.9

October 31, 2009 | No Comments Yet

Here’s another new feature coming in WordPress 2.9 that will make maintaining your blog a lot easier. You can now upgrade multiple plugins that have updates available all at once. No need to go through them one at a time. A welcome improvement for WordPress sites of all sizes. Visit WP Engineer for a screenshot of the feature.

There are few details yet but it’s great that we’re getting news about all these new improvements to WordPress before it comes out, so we know what to expect.

(Via Weblog Tools Collection)

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , ,

Embed media using only URLs in WordPress 2.9

October 16, 2009 | No Comments Yet

Here’s another great feature coming up in WordPress 2.9: easy media embedding using just the URL of the photo or video you want to place in your blog posts.

The catch is the URLs must be enclosed in shortcodes, and that the media must come from one of the predefined media providers: YouTube, Blip.tv, Flickr, Hulu, Viddler, Qik.com, Revision3, Google Video, PollDaddy, DailyMotion.

Of course, there are methods for adding more providers: using (a) wp_oembed_addprovider() function for oEmbed-compatible website and (b) defining a handler/callback function that checks the URL and generates the necessary embed code in its place.

Finally, wp_expand_dimensions() lets you resize the media to the largest dimensions possible given an example width-height ratio.

Read more about these in Viper007Bond’s post.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

the_post_image() in WordPress 2.9

October 15, 2009 | No Comments Yet

In WordPress 2.9, users will now be able to set a representative image per post, one of the most popular features found in advanced or premium WP themes.

The image can be added via the function the_post_image(), with possible parameters 'medium' and 'thumbnail' to indicate the size.

I’m still on the fence about this. On the one hand it’s one of the biggest things that’s missing in in the WordPress core for anybody who wants to transform their websites to more than just a blog. But on the other hand other smart solutions, like the Get the Image plugin, exist. I would love to see the_post_image() expand its feature set to extract the first uploaded image within the post automatically, and provide the option of setting that as the featured image for that post.

Either way, we’re seeing a huge focus on the media management aspect of WordPress in this upcoming version.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Basic image editing in WordPress 2.9

September 15, 2009 | 1 Comment

Jeff Chandler of WordPress Tavern has recorded a screencast on a major new feature coming in WordPress 2.9, which he discovered in one of the nightly builds. This was the third most popular feature voted on in the WP 2.9 media manager survey from a few months ago.

I fired up my local server today and installed the latest version of WordPress 2.9 and was surprised to see the basic image editing tools already available in the media library. I decided that the best way to display them in action was through video which also gave me another reason to open up CamtasiaStudio. In the video, I show off each individual tool as well as provide feedback on the crop tool as at this stage, does not appear to be user friendly. But, it’s very early in the development stage so it will most likely be better once it hits the public’s hands. Check out the video.

Functions include crop, rotate, flip, undo/redo, and scaled resizing. You can also apply the changes made to all the images in the library in one go—now that’s the most useful feature of all.

Jeff comments that the interface still needs polishing but the features work well. Can’t wait to see what else WP 2.9 has in store for us.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , , ,

WordPress 2.9 media features survey results

August 3, 2009 | 2 Comments

Results of the WordPress 2.9 media features survey are out. Aside from the detailed breakdown of votes for each feature, what’s interesting is the list of alternative plugins you can use right now while these proposed new features have not been implemented natively.

But rest assured that the development team is attending to the WordPress community’s requests:

The top-voted feature, standalone photo albums, is being worked on as a Google Summer of Code project by Rudolf Lai, under the mentorship of WordPress Lead Developer Mark Jaquith. The “pencils down” date for GSOC is in less than two weeks, at which point we’ll be assessing the state of Rudolf’s project. Hopefully, we’ll be able to incorporate it with 2.9 development, do some testing, amend the code and/or UI as needed, and have this launch with the 2.9 release (in core or as plugin TBD). Undoubtedly, additional functionality will be contributed by core contributors who have also been working on media plugins.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , ,

WordPress 2.8.1 Release Candidate 1 & WordPress 2.9 Media features poll

July 9, 2009 | No Comments Yet

WordPress 2.8.1 is almost good to go with Release Candidate 1. Check out the changes since the last revision (which is beta 2).

On the WordPress 2.9 front, Automattic is holding another community poll, this time with regard to the media manager.

Last Wednesday, the core development team and a number of contributing developers met in the IRC #wordpress-dev channel to talk about which features should be included in version 2.9, which is now entering the development phase. We’ve been planning to focus on media features in 2.9 for some time, and unsurprisingly, it was media features that dominated the discussion.* A large percentage of the requests we get from users are for more/better media features, so we’ve decided to focus 2.9 on building an infrastructure for improved media handling that we can continue to build on in versions to come. In that vein, we need your input to determine which features to prioritize and build sooner rather than later.

There are a whole lot of suggested new features, so choose wisely! WordPress is well on its way to becoming a heavy-duty media management machine, and it’s all up to you. Poll permalink is here. Voting ends on July 10 at midnight, UTC time.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Important announcements from the #wordpress-dev IRC meetup

June 4, 2009 | No Comments Yet

A few heads-up announcements regarding the future of WordPress development at the #wordpress-dev IRC meetup:

  • WordPress 2.8 target release date is June 10, next week.
  • WordPress 2.9 will require MySQL 4.1.2. (Might be good to start contacting your webhost this early to see if yours is compatible, or can be made compatible within the coming months.)
  • Upgrading to PHP 5 from PHP 4 is highly recommended and will pushed for in the future WordPress upgrader. (Another thing to ask your webhost about.)
  • In case you want to check out the IRC meetup, they’re held weekly every Wednesday at 9 pm UTC.

Very useful information to help you prepare for future versions of WordPress. Although WP is pretty easy to deal with when it comes to web hosting requirements, it doesn’t hurt to know about these things even if you’re an ordinary blogger.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

WordCamp SF State of the Word and Q&A with Matt Mullenweg

June 3, 2009 | No Comments Yet

Aside from the merging of WordPress.org and WordPress MU, many other announcements were made during WordCamp San Francisco’s State of the Word, delivered of course by Matt Mullenweg. Check out the summary posted by The WordCamp Report, including this Q&A.

Some highlights:

  • Lots of changes that caused “minor revolutions”: return of Quick Post, threaded comments, 1-click upgrades, etc.
  • WordPress core focuses on speed and simplicity, then “let the people do whatever they want”
  • WordPress themes and the GPL still a big issue
  • WordPress is the fastest growing skill on Elance
  • WordPress.tv
  • WordPress 2.8: coming soon! New features: rewritten Widgets, theme directory built into admin, CodePress syntax editor, multiple galleries per page, per page options for plugins, improved language support
  • WordPress 2.9 to focus on under-the-hood improvements

For more links, catch this round up by Weblog Tools Collection.

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

WordPress 2.9 Media Manager wireframes

April 15, 2009 | No Comments Yet

Shane Froebel has posted a PDF of wireframes for the WordPress 2.9 Media Manager via the WP-Hackers mailing list. You can read all about it here.

Once the 2.8.x development started I went AWOL for pretty much 4 months of clear cut no programing. So fast forward to today. The release of my proposed Media Management System for the 2.9.x line. I spent many months without talking or what the status was and talked to a few developer privaily on the direction I was taking it. But after a while I got a pretty good picture on how I envisioned a very updated a slick Media Management System for WordPress.

This feature is set to release in October this year. There’s been barely any talk about the next version of WordPress (which is 2.8), and yet here we are already skipping into WP 2.9. It’s always good to look forward to these things though.

(Via WPLover)

Leave a Comment | Tags: , , , ,