While the Blogosopher seminar showcases WordPress and how to use it, the course is really about understanding how to build your business and search rank- along with a real comprehension of how the Internet and search work. We mix in a lot of marketing- understanding the building of relationships with your audience- and what you need to put on your site to make it work for you and your reader.
So- as everything now changes in Internet time (faster than a speeding bullet) there are a few new developments with WordPress.
On December 26, 2005 version 2.0 is supposed to be released. It offers a lot of new features and bells and whistles- the best description of them are here on Owen Winkler’s site
While many people always want to install the latest software right away- my advice is always to wait a week, to see what bugs surface. The features that interest me the most are the integrated image browser, which will eliminate the name for a plug-in hack to do this, and a revision to the users feature, where instead of a 1-10 level type hierarchy, you can now assign roles and permissions to each user.
Some changes to how pictures are handled could be good or bad- but it should eliminate the need for gallery type software to display a picture with a description easily (something that should have been really easy). A WYSIWYG text editor is now included making things like bullet lists and tabs and indents much easier.
The interface is different- which will take some getting used to- but this is always the case. A built in Spam catching system may eliminate the need for plugs ins to do the job.
There is one feature still in Beta that really interests me- a Stats panel right in the interface- no having to go to the server to see whatâ€™s what- but this may only be a feature in the hosted solution- see below.
The other big news is that you can have a free WordPress blog at WordPress.com â€“ some would say that will be the end of our hosting business– but I think it just proves that you get what you pay for. The free Blogs donâ€™t come with your own URL- that makes for a sloppy url ie. something like blogosopher.wordpress.com, and of course, Iâ€™ve reserved it- and put a little bit up. You are also limited to 12 themes with no ability to edit them.
There also will be the question of ownership- and integrity of the authors. A local newspaper reporter has asked me several times about how to figure out the owner of a site on blogspot– www.mydayton.blogspot.com to which I am unable to determine- since the url isnâ€™t a primary. There have been some stories in the blogosphere (not blogosopher) about some sites disappearing– or being deleted. This is always the possibility on a â€œFreeâ€ site.
These are big changes for WordPress- and weâ€™ll try to keep you informed of how they change things as we learn more about the changes ourselves.
WordPress news for the New Year
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