WordPress 3.8 “Parker”

Many of you have already seen the new WordPress 3.8 release. With WordPress accounting for over half of the most trafficked sites in the world (see http://trends.builtwith.com/cms), these updates potentially affect nearly every single web user in the world.

Version 3.8 of WordPress, named “Parker” in honor of Charlie Parker, bebop innovator, is available for download or update in your WordPress dashboard. We hope you’ll think this is the most beautiful update yet.

More importantly, each new change directly affects webmasters and developers in the millions. Here are the main feature updates and some thoughts on them:

Aesthetic

Simplified dashboard – the dashboard has a cleaner and more simple look to it.

This will take some getting used to, but it is a good look and will make for a better cross-device experience.

Typography

Open Sans typeface – gone is the bulky, serify font of yesterday and in is the sleek and classy Open Sans. This new font is also optimized for desktop and mobile viewing, which seems to be one of the major objectives of this release.

Contrast

High Contrast Color Schemes – the new color schemes will eventually grow on me but for now they are all a little disrupting. The exception is the ‘Light’ scheme, which I prefer to the default (shown below next to the prior look of 3.7):

New WordPress Update - Parker

Responsive

Mobile friendly admin interface – Finally! Yes, this is what we’ve been waiting for. I’m actually writing this section on the iPhone app which was updated on Tuesday and is now optimized for iOS7.

This is easily my favorite aspect if the new release. The interface is finally working properly and provides an excellent experience. Tags are still cumbersome but that’ll get sorted out at some point.

Theme Management

This is a convenient feature that allows you to preview each theme in an easy fashion by tapping the arrow keys. Definitely a plus when getting new sites developed.

Twenty Fourteen

A Magazine Theme – this was a little bit of a surprise. I was not expecting a magazine layout theme for this one, but with three very good blogging/site themes a magazine/news style theme fits nicely into the mix.

All in all, this was a fantastic update. It will take some time to adjust to the new look, but all the improvements to mobile make this one of the best releases of the year!

Be sure to thank the WordPress team and Automattic in any way you can.

What do you think of the new changes?