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Do you blog? Are you blogging on the currently popular WordPress blogging tool? If you are, then you’ve probably heard the news about the release of WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 to the public.

Now that the actual software is out, I have downloaded and taken it out for a little spin. The following photos should enlighten those who have yet downloaded the product.

Lets take a look at the main Dashboard interface first.

Really, I would have to admit, the new dashboard certainly catches my attention. It’s got a more Web 2.0 look now. Check out the menus on the left hand side. They surely beat the current menu system.

WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 Dashboard

Then, there is the screen options bar beneath the Dashboard header. This allows you to select what you see on every page in the Administrative back-end pages. Clearly a lot of tweaking has been done on the Administrative back-end area.

WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 Dashboard Screen Options

The new Dashboard now allows for creating a quick post. Just write your post in the QuickPress area and Publish or Save as Draft. No WYSIWYG Editor here. So, you better know your HTML before doing any lengthy QuickPress here.

WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 Dashboard QuickPress

One of the best new feature brought forth by the WordPress Development Team in this 2.7 Beta 1 is the Plugin Browser and Installation Module. I simply love this particular new feature in WordPress 2.7 Beta 1. Now I can search for plugins from within my own website.

WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 Plugin Search

Once you’ve found the plugin you were looking for, you can then install it from within the WordPress Administrative interface. Pretty handy eh?

WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 Plugin Install

The Create Post screen in WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 has also been revamped. Following is how the new screen looks like. How do you like it? Nothing new here except for a “Stick to frontpage” option which I have yet to try out. Just repositioning of some modules.

WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 Add New Post

Existing posts management has also been given an uplift. You can now perform a Quick Edit on existing posts via the Quick Edit feature. This feature basically allows you to edit only certain attributes of the post like the Title, Status, Tags, Categories, etc.

WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 Post Quick Edit

If you noticed, the posts listed in the screenshot above includes excerpts from the posts. This is also an option in the new WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 Edit Posts screen. You can now view your posts with or without excerpts. Pretty handy if you need to figure out, at a glance, what exactly is the contents of any particular post. I like this feature too.

The last feature I’m about to show is also new. A large number of WordPress users have a problem when it comes too upgrading WordPress on their own, me included.  Yes, the upgrade process is pretty much straight forward – Just overwrite the old with the new except for a few configuration files, yada yada yada. Still, to those who are not really technically well versed in the entire file system in a hosting environment, it’s a pretty daunting task. Perhaps, that is the reason behind the inclusion of this new WordPress Upgrade feature in WordPress 2.7 Beta 1.

WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 Upgrade

I have yet to try this feature out as well. Don’t really know how it works. Very interested in seeing if this really does upgrade the installed WordPress without problems. I will certainly test this out very soon.

There you go. I’ve laid out a number of the new features and screen shots available in this new WordPress 2.7 Beta 1 recently released to the public.

Have you downloaded it yet? Are you running it in your public website now? I haven’t. I’m running it now in my Local WordPress Installation. Will probably only upgrade my WordPress sites to 2.7 when it is out of Beta.

So, what do you think of the new WordPress 2.7 interface? I think it’s pretty cool indeed. My hat goes off to the people behind this great piece of development and design work. Keep it up WordPress.