Get it All

Since I’ve become such a fan of developing Widgets and stuff for WordPress, I’ve decided I’d better get ahead of the curve and download the most recent release candidate for WordPress 2.1. The final product is due out by the end of the month, and that’s not very far away at all.

So, I signed up for the Testers mailing list and downloaded the most recent candidate to a Dev server to try out. The nice thing is: I’ll be able to read along as the new version (and future versions) progresses, maybe throw my two cents in, where appropriate.

For example: my primary motivation was to find out what, exactly, would change in the new version and how that would affect my JavaScript Collapsing Categories Widget. Well, the situation seems a bit confused, if you ask me. Indeed, the “Links” section of the Admin panel has been removed. However, the wp_links table in my database remains (this is a fresh installation, so it’s not a remnant of the old version). New links do not become new Posts, they go right into the exact same table they’ve always gone into.

The only thing that has changed is that they’ve dropped the wp_linkcategories table and rolled all of that into the wp_categories table. At the risk of sounding obtuse, I don’t quite get what this improves. Certainly, it makes life difficult for all of us who’ve made Plugins that affect Categories, since we now have to come up with an entirely new version that matches the new standard. I’m going to take this as an opportunity to make a new version of my plugin that affects *both* Categories and Links, in terms of the final UI. But I still don’t get what they improved by making this change.

I presume, but I don’t know, that they’ve incorporated something that will automatically import the wp_linkcategories list into the wp_categories list, but I’ve not had the pleasure of trying this out for myself. I would definitely recommend backing up your Blogroll before upgrading, that much is certain.

I’m going to get into other specifics about the new version in a sec, but for now, I just wanted to highlight this one rather important (to some of us, anyway) new change.