Block 2 is WordPress itself

A few days ago WordPress released version 3.8. This version, nicknamed Parker after jazz great Charlie Parker, has some important changes. You should update as soon as possible!

Dashboard Appearance

WorePress 3.8 sports a completely updated dashboard. To be honest, after working with WordPress for years, the new dashboard came as a bit of a shock.

Here’s what the old-style dashboard home page looks like:

old style dashboard

And here’s the new one.

new style dashboard

Fortunately the menus along the left-hand side haven’t changed. Also fortunately, you can change the color scheme. My older eyes don’t handle the white type on black background very well, so right off I went looking to see how to change it.

It’s a simple fix: Click on Users / Your Profile

Select your preferred color scheme, then scroll down to the bottom of the page and click Update Profile.

new color scheme choices

You can choose one with lots of color pop,

WordPress 3.8 colors

or you can opt for one that more closely mimics the old-style dashboard colors, like this one:

new color scheme for the dashboard

Widgets

If you’ve done much with widgets you know what a pain it is to try to drag a widget from the bottom of the page to an area near the top.

We’ve gone from this:

old widget page

To this:

new WordPress 3.8 widget page

WordPress 3.8 solves that problem completely. Now, instead of dragging and dropping, you just open and click.

When you click on a widget, you immediately see a dropdown checklist. Just check off the widget area where you want your item, clidk the Add Widget button, and it’s there.

widget selection is easier

Easier to Use Across Multiple Devices

If you always sit down at your computer to work with your site, this may not affect you. If you’ve ever updated on the go, using a tablet or smart phone, you may have found the WordPress dashboard to be cumbersome and unwieldy.

Not so now.

The new WordPress dashboard works beautifully across devices.

Here’s what it looks like on a tablet:

WordPress 3.8 dashboard in a tablet

I wasn’t able to get a screenshot on my smart phone, but here’s the one from WordPress.org’s site — if you want to see the menu you’re used to seeing along the left-hand side, just click the hash lines I circled here and it’ll pop up for you.

WordPress 3.8 dashboard in a smart phone

There’s a lot to like about this latest version of WordPress! I think my favorite is that it’s now easier to use on mobile devices. What’s yours?

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