WordPress September Roundup (2022): WordPress 6.1 features and beta releases, Canonical Plugins, and more

WordPress September Roundup (2022): WordPress 6.1 features and beta releases, Canonical Plugins, and more

Welcome! People of WordPress. Let’s take a look at all the exciting news and updates that took place in the month of September 2022.

Before we dive into September roundup, let’s take a quick recap of what happened in the August Roundup.  The announcement of WordPress 6.1 product walk-through, wp.org homepage design updates, Gutenberg 13.9 & 14.0 release, and much more.

It was already clear that September will be a visual treat, and boy the month brought in many announcements and releases, like, Twenty Twenty-Three Style variants, Canonical Plugins, and 6.1 beta releases. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg, there is a lot more exciting information in this September roundup. Let’s get started, what say?

WordPress drops security updates for version 3.7 to 4.0 ❗

  • Do you belong to the 0.51% of the people who run WordPress websites on 3.7/3.8/3.9/4.0? If your answer is yes, then you are on the verge of a security breach.
  • These versions of WordPress were released more than eight years ago. And there are only a few websites that run on these versions.
  • So the WordPress Security team decided to stop security updates for these versions (3.7, 3.8, 3.9, and 4.0) on December 1st, 2022.
  • By dropping the security updates for the older versions, the newer versions of WordPress will become more secure. You may wonder how? The security team will have more time to focus on identifying and releasing security patches for the newer versions.
  • So, if you’re using an older version of WordPress, log in to your dashboard and update to the most recent version.

WordPress 6.1 updates

  • WordPress 6.1 walk-through streamed on September 13th, 2022.
  • This version of WordPress contains more than 350 enhancements and bug fixes for the editor, including more than 250 tickets for the WordPress 6.1 core.
  • The walk-through was packed with so many exciting features and announcements for end users as well as developers. I’d like to highlight a few for you
  • Features for end users
    • The default theme is powered by 10 unique style variations (TT3)
    • More design tools in more blocks
    • Template experience and options refined
    • More intuitive document setting experience
    • Header and footer patterns for all themes
    • Quote and list blocks have been improved, and inner blocks are now supported
    • More robust placeholders for various blocks
    • New modal interfaces and preferences improvements
    • Easy menu management and automatic navigation block selection with fallbacks
    • Apply locking settings to all inner blocks in one click
    • Improvements to the block theme discovery experience
    • Accessibility & Performance updates
  • Features for developers
    • Select appearance tools to enhance any theme
    • Style system updated
    • Add starter patterns to any post type
    • Layout options updated, now it includes a new constrained option and ability to disable layout options
    • Content lock patterns for more curation options
    • Expanded support for query loop blocks
    • Allow the use of block-based template parts in classic themes
    • Filter the theme.json data
    • Fluid typography allows for greater responsiveness
    • Ability to style elements inside blocks like buttons, headings, or captions in theme.json
  • Ps- The features stated above are subject to change before the final release.
  • You can watch the full product walk-through, which is available on WordPress.tv

Beta 1 & Beta 2 releases for WordPress 6.1

  • September Roundup covers two beta releases of WordPress 6.1
  • Beta 1 released on September 21st, 2022. The testers identified 24 new issues and updated to GitHub.
  • Beta 2 released on September 27th, 2022. Click this link and follow the download instructions to test this version of WordPress. Beta 3 version will be dropping on October 4th, 2022.
  • Please note that these are just beta versions, so it is highly recommended that you test these versions on the test server.

Twenty Twenty-Three Theme

Video Credits – WordPress.org
  • The curated set of style variants was showcased to the public on September 7th, 2022.
  • The 10 style variations were picked from the 38 submissions received, from 19 contributors, from 8 different parts of the world. Kudos to every contributor 👏.
  • These styles will be shipped along with WordPress 6.1 as default theme (November 1st, 2022). 
  • Let me know which one appeals to you the most in the comments.

WebP in Core & Canonical Plugins Revisited

  • Matt Mullenweg posted two posts on September 12th, 2022.
  • Post 1 titled “WebP in Core for 6.1”- Long story short, there were discussions on bringing a core feature to WordPress 6.1, where it automatically converts the JPEGs to WebP when uploaded. So Matt suggested that bringing this feature as a canonical plugin would be better as it provides more space to experiment and push functionality.
  • Post 2 titled “Canonical Plugins Revisited”- This one was about expanding the WordPress plugin directory by introducing and developing more canonical plugins.. He also listed a few canonical plugin ideas for each team present in the WordPress community.
  • Interested to know more about the post and Canonical plugins? Click here.

 WordPress #WPDiversity

  • WPDiversity conducted a Speaker Workshop for Indian Women in the WordPress Community on September 24th and 25th. I believe this was a great initiative to bring out more speakers to the WordPress community. What do you think?
  • Just like the previous workshop, WPDiversity is conducting another workshop on October 29th, 2022 (10:00 AM-06:00 PM CST) taking place in the Hilton La Sabana hotel in San Jose.
  • Read in detail about the event and register using this link.

Openverse

  • Openverse 3.4.8 frontend released on September 7th, 2022. The Openverse team is looking for an expert to test the accessibility of the component.
  • If you are someone who can test accessibility, click here.
  • There’s even more audio in Openverse now! Over 800,000 songs, samples, and other openly licensed audio files are available for use or remixing in any project.

WordCamp Updates

  • To all the WordCamp enthusiasts in India, Nagpur city 🍊 is preparing to host the 4th WordCamp, which will take place on November 12th, 2022, at the Chitnavis Centre. The call for speakers is open, click here to apply.
  • Upcoming WordCamps

WordPress September Roundup – Parting Notes

What are your thoughts on the September roundup of WordPress?

Feel free to post your opinions, thoughts, and comments. You can also send your questions/insights/ideas via an electronic letter 📧 at [email protected]

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Until next time, goodbye!

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