Last week, WordPress launched its latest update, WordPress 3.2 “Gershwin,” the fifteenth major release for the open-source software.

WordPress Logo

Rather than simply focusing on security features, this update centres on making things more streamlined and faster for users.  Named after composer George Gershwin, WordPress 3.2 “lets you take familiar elements and weave them into something entirely unique.” With over 400 improvements, Gershwin offers users some new features and upgrades that are worth checking out:

Faster
One of the key aims of the update is to speed up the user experience.  This includes faster loading time for its most commonly loaded pages and a new system that now supports faster incremental upgrades.  Speed optimisation and performance improvements have also been added throughout.

Cleaner
WordPress has removed the clutter on-screen to help people focus on their writing instead of distractions on the page.  A full screen editor puts writing at the forefront, and a lighter dashboard gives users a tighter design and code. While some tools and features are hidden, they are still easily accessible and convenient.

Smoother
The dashboard is one of the main places where WordPress has created a smoother experience.  Its redesign differs slightly enough from the current version to help users find what they need, in the most logical places, without making them learn a completely new set up.

Additionally, new features such as shortcuts, added links, and drop down menus help users navigate the site easily.

Prettier
The update also includes a new HTML5 powered “Twenty Eleven” theme and many sleek headers.  Twenty Eleven is heavily customisable and has been created to display well on several platforms, including laptops and mobile devices.

“21st Century Blog”
In order to accommodate its new design, WordPress 3.2 will not support IE6.  Its minimum requirements also include PHP 5.2.4 and MySQL 5.0.15 (which shouldn’t be much of a concern since these have been around for years, so chances are your site should be just fine).  Users can check if their web server meets minimum requirements by using WordPress’s “baked in nagging” feature which will help highlight what needs to be updated.

Cite have used WordPress to develop websites for many clients, including Pfizer and Sage. For more information on how WordPress could be right for you, give us a call.