WordPress has released 3.9 weeks ago, now it’s time for WP 4.0
The announced 4.0 will be released August 27, 2014 according to the road-map of WordPress
Myself I’m so curious, who’s gonna be named as the official Jazz musician of the release? 3.9 was Jimmy Smith.
I know: 4.0 is no more significant than 3.9 or any other major release. It just so happens that WordPress’twenty-third major release will be labeled 4.0.
But we know — even those of us who know that 4.0 is just 4.0 — that we’ll be just a little more excited about 4.0 than a normal major release. We remember 3.0. It was huge! Multisite, custom post types and many other amazing things we now take for granted were included. But, that doesn’t mean that 4.0 will be so big.
In the stock market, the arbitrary assignment of additional importance to round numbers is called round number bias. The problem is, even though all halfway savvy investors understand this, it doesn’t stop anyone from using round numbers as points of reference and milestones, therefore giving them even further support for importance.
“With shares flirting with $500 again, is it time to buy or time to panic?”
– fool.com talking about Apple.
No matter how much we may want to ignore round numbers, we are drawn to them. They make understanding things easier. And like in the stock market, even though we know 4.0 is just another major release, we want it to be special. We want it to have flair. And I can guess the big tech headlines now. They probably won’t recognize the WordPress version numbering policy at all. They’ll cite the big release of 4.0, and weigh its greatness based on what new major features are included.
Pressure for signature features can sometimes make software management difficult. WordPress 3.7 lacked a signature feature, but it was still an incredible release. WordPress 3.8 shipped with the new admin design, so the signature feature was taken care of. But other times, the desire to ship with a signature feature can end up putting so much focus on said feature that other items that should’ve been a lock, end up not getting the attention they otherwise could have. All for the sake of releasing something “sexy”.
Every planning meeting for core development, I see folks in chat wanting to know what the signature feature is going to be.
And in 4.0, expectations will be high. Also, I’ve followed WordPress project lead Matt Mullenweg’s style of leadership for a number of years now, and I think he’ll want to see something really special in 4.0 too.
So, while it may just be another release, I think extra special attention will be given to the signature feature for 4.0.
So what will 4.0 include?
Speculation about what will be included in any release (before the time comes to decide) is poor form. However, that shouldn’t stop us from putting our two cents out there as far as what we’d like to see. Note that I view these as different things. Speculation is the likes of “What’s coming in WordPress 4.0? with a detailed feature list, well before a beta period is underway.
It’s why I do release posts when WordPress is actually released, and not before. The Post Format UI experience in WordPress 3.6 is a perfect example of why I do this. Many posts were prematurely written assuming this feature would ship with 3.6, making it confusing for later readers when the feature was (wisely) pulled from the release.
What do you think?