WordPress weekly recap #21: 4.8 dev notes and more

This week saw several posts with detailed information about new features in 4.8, which are often interesting for developers.




Current state of enhanced settings API

The goal of the enhanced settings API is to replace the table layouts on multiple backend settings pages with semantic markup. Besides that, the two-column layout should be replaced with a one-column layout, and the API should be easier to use for developers.

Current development happens on GitHub as a plugin, and the team wants to finish a prototype for WordCamp Europe. More information about that in the post »Enhanced Settings API: Where we’re at« by Felix Arntz.

TinyMCE for the text widget

In WordPress 4.8, the text widget gets a few WYSIWYG options with a visual editor. With that, you can easy make text bold or italic, create lists, and insert links — plugins can insert additional buttons. The main reason that the feature did not come earlier was the problem to initiate a new TinyMCE instance after page load.

Shortcodes and embeds are not supported. Many more about the new feature can be found in the article »Addition of TinyMCE to the Text Widget« by Weston Ruter.

Tag cloud changes in 4.8

Since several years, the tag cloud widget uses the title attribute to show the number of posts. 4.8 will remove the title attribute and use aria-label instead because title is not very accessible and therefore unsuitable for storing relevant information.

There is an additional widget setting to display the post number in brackets behind the tag name. This option can be forced by plugins and themes. More details about that in the post »Tag Cloud widget changes in 4.8« by Andrea Fercia.

Widgets for images, videos, and audio

WordPress 4.8 introduces three new widgets for displaying images, videos, and audio. The widgets interface the media library JavaScript and use the existing media modal frames for selecting media and modifying the parameters.

You can read much more about that in the article »Media Widgets for Images, Video, and Audio« by Weston.


Theme review team


  • »The goal going forward«. Among other things, the theme preview should be improved, because this is one of the main problems.



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