WordPress.org recently released Version 3.8 of WordPress, named “Parker” in honor of Charlie Parker. This update focuses primarily on improving the user interface for administrators by incorporating the work done on the “secret” MP6 Plugin into WordPress core. The update presents a cleaner and fully responsive admin area, allowing site owners to manage their site seamlessly from any device. Just as the internet is becoming more accessible for users on all devices (phones, tablets, etc.), now site owners are afforded the same benefit when managing their sites. The admin area of your customized WordPress CMS will have a more modern look with clean and crisp typography and greater contrast to increase legibility across different devices.
Minor improvements have also been made on the Dashboard and Widget areas in WordPress to better utilize the space available and allow administrators to get a better at-a-glance view of their site. These areas and others will gracefully scale to best use the available space on your screen.
This update also comes with the new Twenty Fourteen theme, which comes standard on all new WordPress installations for causal users looking to a run their own web site. This theme creates a magazine-style layout, with options for a grid or slider to display featured content on your homepage and three widget areas. There are also two unique page templates available should you want to change things up a little more from there. While the theme may not be an out of the box solution for branded sites, it offers some great ideas in a striking design and method for displaying content.
This is the second update from the WordPress community using the new plugin-first development process, which has allowed the community to roll out updates faster while also gaining better user testing and feedback. The previous version WordPress (3.7 “Basie”, named in honor of Count Basie) which facilitated automatic security updates and better global language support used the same method. With the recent updates coming out of the WordPress community, WordPress is becoming more accessible to a broader base of users, while still maintaining high levels of security. The future is looking to be an exciting time for WordPress and its users.