As I write out the title of this post, I’ve gotta say it’s a bit daunting. Perhaps it’s too broad or generic but speaking from my own experience, for the 7 years (2003) WordPress has been around, I’ve been using it for almost 5 years. Not too shabby so I’m feeling confident.
Before we dive into this, there’s a few things I want to mention. First, the intention behind this post is to highlight the major changes that have happened with WordPress. With the leaps WP has taken to improve and enhance it’s platform, there’s still a majority of users that consider WordPress as a blogging platform.
I beg to differ.
I’m of the opinion that WordPress is a fully fledged CMS but that’s an entirely different discussion.
There has been huge strides in regards to the WordPress UI and functionality. From the first versions going from only having a “post” option (no pages) to even the implementation of the WooNav into the WordPress core for the 3.0 release. (“Hat tip” fellas).
Secondly, the evolution of WordPress has a direct correlation to the GIANT community behind it. A big thanks to the cornerstone resources. Here’s some peeps I’ve followed since the beginning of my WP journey and others that bring immense value to community:
- WPDesigner (To bad the new owner let it go to nothing but still HUGE Props to Small Potato!)
- Alex King
- Brian Gardner
- Jason Schuller
- Justin Tadlock
- Ian Stewart
- Chris Pearson
I know I forgot someone, so let me just say sorry now and I didn’t mean it. These are just peeps I’ve followed—so no hard feelings right? Cool.
For Starters—Here’s the Release History:
Kicking things off, let’s take a look at the first version(s) 1.0 of WordPress. As I’ve always said and stood behind, I think of WordPress as one of the most SEO sound platforms. Even back in January 3, 2004 when this version was released, you could alter the permalinks to be more SEO friendly. Thought that was worth noting. Also, as you can see, there’s the only the option to create posts.
Plugins all around jumped for joy as they found a comfy spot in the world of WordPress. Or something like that. Anyway, the addition of plugins was by far the biggest upgrade in this version.
Welcome to the wonderful world of templates. As Matt said when this was released, “templates now adapt to you, instead you adapting to them.” This of course, is when the Kubrick theme was released. Also, pages we’re unveiled which at the time, was a pretty kick-ass feature.
There were some very key features released with this version. Of course, the back end was re-designed and along with that came additional upgrades to existing features.
Skipping a few versions, (2.1, 2.2, 2.3) I’m jumping into 2.5 when another major re-design of the back end happened. This time around, WordPress teamed up with Happy Cog to deliver a fresh, new look. On top of that, this update was pretty significant in terms of functionality. Features I remember we’re the built-in Gravatars and galleries.
A collection of 6 months of work and driven mainly by the feedback of us, the WordPress users. Cool stuff.
The design interface made a huge shift in terms of design with the 2.7 release. I know personally, it took some getting used. Aside from yet another admin re-design, probably the biggest upgrade with this version release was the ability to automatically install plugins and upgrade your WP version right from the admin panel.
In my mind, the 3.0 version release seemed to be the most anticipated. Huge changes and new features that will certainly bring a whole new level of innovation.
Some key features worth noting are custom post types, integrated menu system, taxonomies, merge between WordPress and WordPress MU and of course a new default theme—Twenty Ten.
As you skim through this post, what’s your favorite feature/addition/enhancement as WordPress as evolved? I’m guessing there has to be something that sticks out to you from your own personal experience with the WordPress growth.
With 3.0 out, it should be interesting to see how things continue with premium WordPress themes, features, plugin capabilities, etc. Pretty exciting to think about what’s in store.