I’ve been waiting for several days to see if this story is actually true or not, but according to the WordPress IRC channel (#wordpress on irc.freenode.net) and several of the blogs on Planet WordPress, it would appear that the 2.0 release of the popular blogging software has been officially marked as stable.
To be honest I’m surprised by the lack of fanfare this release has received – even Matt, one of the main WordPress developers, hasn’t given it a mention on his blog yet (which is where I usually pick up the latest WordPress news). The official WordPress.org blog also remains silent, the last item being the announcement that Yahoo will be offering one-click WordPress installations as part of its hosting packages.
Asymptomatic has a list of what’s new in WordPress 2.0 (unfortunately there was no official list on wordpress.org at the time of writing). A lot of the changes are backend improvements, such as better caching and http://web.archive.org/web/20090106185733/http://asymptomatic.net/2005/11/29/2135/whats-new-in-wordpress-20/database abstraction, which you probably won’t notice unless you’re a developer or have a very popular site. The admin control panel has also changed, although I’m not sure if I really like the new look as things have been moved around/hidden in some places. I’m sure I’ll get used to it though, given time.
Problems and bugs
Another thing that has surprised me about the 2.0 release is the number of people that have been complaining about bugs that made it into the final “stable” version. Most of the compliants have related to file uploading, which works differently in the new version, and I’m sure the WordPress developers are working hard to resolve the other outstanding issues (actually I know that they are, as I’m subscribed to the wp-hackers mailing list). I also helped to close an issue about private posts appearing in RSS feeds, so I feel I’ve made a small contribution to the project.
Trying 2.0 without upgrading
If you want to give the latest version a whirl without upgrading your existing blogs, just sign up for a WordPress.com account. At the moment I’m using my account there to try things out and see how the new admin panel works, because I’ve got at least four blogs running on WordPress 1.5.2 at the moment and I don’t want to upgrade any of them until I know the release is ready for general use.