I was editing a friend’s WordPress site today and noticed he was not up to date. The call to action at the top of the page suggested I update to the 3.8.3 release. Nothing unusual there. So I asked him if I could update the site for him, and he was all for it. I clicked the link, and suddenly ‘m being asked to update to 3.9 “Smith”. Wow. I’ve never seen a WordPress release happen in near real-time. The fact that I am excited by this makes me an enormous dork, but there’s not much I can do about that.
The new “Smith” release is named after Jazz organist Jimmy Smith. The major improvements are mostly about the visual editing capabilities. Copying text from third-party editors like Word will now strip out all the junk when you paste it into the editor. Images are much easier to edit and place in the editor as well. There’s also the ability to preview widgets before you publish, and a whole lot more. Check out Matt Mullenweg’s blog post on the update here.