21 Apr New Features in WordPress 3.9

When WordPress releases a new update, there is always a bit of discussion online about the changes that have been made and how they will impact website owners. There might be some adjustments that are needed as you are getting used to the new version of WordPress, but each new version offers improvements and new features that can help to make your website even better.

Here is an overview about what you can expect when you update your website to WordPress 3.9:

wordpress-39-widget-updateCustomizing Widgets

When installing widgets, in the past you haven’t been unable to preview the changes in order to see how the widget will impact your website. With the new WordPress changes, you can see the website preview before the widget goes live.

There are two ways that widgets can now be accesses in the WordPress Admin panel: in the original location, and now you can also find widget customization in the “Theme Customizer” section. This change allows you to do the work with the widgets and see all of the changes, and then decide if you want to save those changes before they are implemented onto the main website.

No more “live editing” on your website when making widget changes, because you will be able to make all of the edits before you pull the trigger. Some of the widget changes that you can make in this previewer includes adding new widgets, rearranging widgets, and editing widgets that have already been added. To use these features, try adding the Widget Customizer plugin to your WordPress installation.

WYSIWYG Editor

The WYSIWYG editor has been updated, which allows easier functionality, such as drag-and-drop to insert photos directly from your computer desktop. Other changes in the WYSIWYG editor has made it easier to edit and write content in WordPress, and has definitely improved user experience. For example, you can now see the image galleries within the editor, with a grid that shows the images that will be displayed.

Also, it is easier to edit and crop images now. Before, you had to do the editing outside of WordPress and then upload a new version of the image. Now, you can upload the image and make those changes within the editor. The functions allow you to edit and crop images within WordPress while you are writing a post. Simply click on the image that needs to be edited, and then drag the corner handles to the size that you desire.

Another change to this editor is the fact that the “Paste from Word” button has been removed, but you don’t need to worry about this change because that button is no longer needed in the WYSIWYG editor. The editor can automatically detect if the content is coming from a Word copy-and-paste, and it will convert the content for you. This change is very beneficial, because you don’t need to worry about formatting issues anymore!

wordpress-39-new-editor

Media Gallery

Media is becoming more important in online marketing, and WordPress is making is easier for you to upload media files and to manage the files on your website. There are two new features, including “Create Playlist” and “Create Video Playlist,” which allows you to add audio and video files into a gallery. These new media features make it easy for media to be shared on pages and blog posts, and you can add text as needed to include details about the media files that you are sharing.

Each of the playlist options include specific settings, such as features to show the artist name, images, and the order in which you want the media to be displayed in the playlist. The biggest advantage to this change is the fact that it will make it easy for artists and bands to share their music with their fans, without having to worry about custom plugins or unique design elements for their website.

Just like the image galleries, the playlists can be added by using a shortcode in the location where you want the playlist to appear. When you add these galleries or playlists to a page or a page, you will be able to view them in the WYSIWYG editor because it will show the live previews with the new editor updates.

WordPress Themes

The themes screen has been updated, and it is a cleaner view of the themes that you can choose from. The new themes design has improved user experience, so that you can see a clear preview of the theme appearance without having to click on each of the featured themes.

Additionally, there are now tabs that can be clicked on, which will allow you to move between popular filters and tags, and you can search for themes with the search box at the top.

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