What’s New in WordPress 3.5

WordPress 3.5 is out – I know this is stale news – and there are reams of posts written and rewritten on what’s new and what’s better in this new version. But as I was exploring the new WordPress 3.5 interface, I couldn’t stop myself from documenting this and sharing what I found useful and exciting about this new version.

User friendly interface

Making changes to a website and then shuttling between the two windows to see the changes was really annoying, but seemed necessary. Now WordPress 3.5 has found an answer to that problem. The new 2-column layout, which shows preview in the same window, works really great and most of the changes are dynamic – you don’t need to update anything. Just make the changes in the left column and you can see the result in the preview.

WordPress 3.5 Customize

As you can see in the left column, WordPress 3.5 has also bunched together all appearance related features in this column, which are otherwise distributed across different menus. The number of options, however, change from theme to theme.

Common Tasks and Actions

Another interesting addition to the Welcome screen or the Dashboard section is one-click menu for most common tasks that users will want to do, such as adding an About page or writing your first blog post.

Wordpress 3.5 Dashboard

It also brings out the most frequently discussed option that was buried under Discussion Settings – Turn Comments on or off – to the Dashboard.

Better Media Management

Now this is one area that has a lot of changes. One question that always bugged me in the early days was how to create an image gallery. But WordPress 3.5 now makes it really easy to find and create different image galleries so that you can bundle images in one gallery and use that for a slideshow.

WordPress 3.5 Create Gallery

This new window opens when you are inserting an image in a post. You have all the image options now available from this one window.

Image Editing

Another change related to images is the Image Editing interface. The Edit Media page has a more cleaner look. You can see a bigger image size than in the earlier versions of WordPress. The new interface shows a post-type of layout with the Title option at the top, and the Permalink replaces the File URL field.

Wordpress 3.5 Image Permalink

The Description box gets a facelift in WordPress 3.5. I am not an SEO Ninja or Expert, but I think the ability to make your text bold or italic and also add a hyperlink can help in your page discovery.

Plugin Management

If you have a WordPress account and prefer to browse for plugins on the WordPress.org website, you don’t need to make a separate list of plugins you like while browsing the wordpress.org website anymore. You can now favorite the plugins you like on the WordPress website and see the list on your Install Plugins screen under Favorites.

WordPress 3.5 Mark Plugins Favorite

Once you have marked the plugins you like on the WordPress website, you can then see the list on your Install Plugins page after you enter your WordPress username.

WordPress 3.5 Favorite Plugins List

What changes and new features do you like most in WordPress 3.5 ? Have you updated your WordPress installation or are you still waiting for others to try and upgrade a little later. We would like to hear about your concerns and things you hope to see in future WordPress releases. Join our LinkedIn group to discuss this and other blogging related subjects.



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