Whats New in WordPress 3.3 “Sonny”?

With the release of 3.3 version of wordpress the admin user experience is going to get better. The 3.3 stats when wordpress developer team left off on 3.2. Version 3.2 dropped all support for IE6 and now at 3.3 the admin dashboard doctype changed to HTML 5. Here is some new features I will describe step by step.

1. Welcome Screen

When you first upgrade to wordpress 3.3, the first thing you will be redirect to new welcome screen for wordpress and which will show you some info about the latest version of wordpress. You can access it anytime from hover over the wordpress logo on top left of the Admin toolbar then click on About WordPress.

2. New Toolbar

Admin bar and admin header combined as single toolbar. If you are running wordpress Multisite then you will see the network admin link is now under my sites menu which was hard to find on wordpress 3.2.

3. All New Tooltip API

When you start exploring wordpress 3.3 admin interface you will see new awesome tooltips will give you instruction along the way. These tooltips are very handy for new users to find out new features. Plugin and theme developers can also use this tooltip api to add instructions to users. You might seen these on new updates of plugins and theme upcoming days :).

4. Flyout Menus

On previous version you have to click so many times when navigate to one place to another. Now the submenus will appear on hover over on the menu items so you can navigate with less clicks and less time.


5. More User Friendly Media Uploader

File Type Detection

Media uploader is now smart enough to determine between your video, images and other file formats. So there is not need for having multiple button/icons to upload media so instead of needing to click on a specific upload icon based on your file type, now there’s just one. Once your file is uploaded, the appropriate fields will be displayed for entering information based on the file type.

Drag-and-Drop Media Uploader

Uploading files was never been easier! Now media uploader supports drag and drop files. You can add single or multiple file at once to upload on your media library.

More File Formats

On WordPress 3.3 now rar and 7z file formats are added to the list of allowed file types in the uploader.

6. Content Tools

Better Co-Editing

Have you ever gone to edit a post after someone else has finished with it, only to get an alert that tells you the other person is still editing the post? From now on, you’ll only get that alert if another person is still on the editing screen — no more time lag.

Tumblr Importer

Want to import content from Tumblr to WordPress? No problem! Go to Tools → Import to get the new Tumblr Importer, which maps your Tumblog posts to the matching WordPress post formats.

Widget Improvements

Changing themes often requires widget re-configuration based on the number and position of sidebars. Now if you change back to a previous theme, the widgets will automatically go back to how you had them arranged in that theme. If you’ve added new widgets since the switch, you’ll find them on the Inactive Widgets area.

7. Under the Hood

Flexible Permalinks

Previously there was server overload problem when you choose chose the permalink only post name now you have more freedom when choosing a post permalink structure. You can skip the date information or add a category slug without a performance penalty. Now you will see a new permalink structure Post Name on permalink page.

Post Slugs

Funky characters in post titles (e.g. curly quotes from a word processor) will no longer result in garbled post slugs.

jQuery and jQuery UI

WordPress now includes the entire jQuery UI stack and the latest version of jQuery: 1.7.1.


This handy method will tell you if a WP_Query object is the main WordPress query or a secondary query. Click here for more info.

Editor API Overhaul

The new editor API automatically pulls in all the JS and CSS goodness for the editor. It even supports multiple editors on the same page. Now you can easily add tinymce editor on front page without any hack. Just use the funciton wp_editor();

In The End

WordPress 3.3 comes out with better support with iPad/tablet. Also the help tabs located in the upper corner of the dashboard screens below your name have gotten a facelift. Help content is broken into smaller sections for easier access, with links to relevant documentation and the support forums always visible.  Also there is a new Screen API for adding help documentation and adapting to screen contexts. Metadata API has also improved. Full changelog for version 3.3 can be found here.

That’s about it! Hope you all enjoy the holidays along with the latest version of wordpress :)

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About Sisir

Hello! I am a freelance graphic designer, developer and engineer based on Bangladesh. I like my PC, my coffee cup and Internet.

One Response to Whats New in WordPress 3.3 “Sonny”?

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