WordPress 4.9 was released a few days ago, with some new features which are likely to cause panic amongst developers and designers, and provide some fantastic new features to users and administrators.
The new version, named “Tipton” in honour of jazz musician and band leader Billy Tipton, is available for download from the WordPress site, or for update in your WordPress dashboard.
WordPress 4.9 now offers a brand-new system for saving drafts and saving your work, it also features a ‘design lock’ which locks against your changes being edited or overwritten.
The HTML Editor has been improved, with more features coming too. For coders, the editor now supports syntax highlighting and error checking. There’s also big improvements to the theme chooser and customiser.
There is even a whole load of improvements to the Widget system, now supporting images and video directly in your sidebar, and changes to the Menu creator too.
Finally, as mentioned, there is a new editor/designer called ‘Gutenberg’ coming next year. This will feature a ‘block’ system, rather than shortcodes. This will have some overlap with existing plugins, particularly Divi/Oxygen/Beaver/etc.
WordPress have been clear to point out this is not a replacement;
The goal of Gutenberg is not to put anyone out of business. It’s to evolve WordPress so there’s more business to be had in the future, for everyone.
Aside from enabling a rich post and page building experience, a meta goal is to move WordPress forward as a platform. Not only by modernizing the UI, but by modernizing the foundation.
We realize it’s a big change. We also think there will be many new opportunities for plugins. WordPress is likely to ship with a range of basic blocks, but there will be plenty of room for highly tailored premium plugins to augment existing blocks or add new blocks to the mix.
Gutenberg is scheduled to debut with WordPress 5.0 in 2018. ®
More information can be found on the links below