Last Wednesday, the core development team and a number of contributing developers met in the IRC #wordpress-dev channel to talk about which features should be included in version 2.9, which is now entering the development phase. We’ve been planning to focus on media features in 2.9 for some time, and unsurprisingly, it was media features that dominated the discussion.* A large percentage of the requests we get from users are for more/better media features, so we’ve decided to focus 2.9 on building an infrastructure for improved media handling that we can continue to build on in versions to come. In that vein, we need your input to determine which features to prioritize and build sooner rather than later.
Additional Media Filters: In the uploader, you can currently upload an image from your hard drive, link to an image from a URL, or select an image from the Media Library. This proposed feature would add links in the Media Library pane that would allow you to filter images to those that had been used most recently, used most often, and/or marked as a favorite. These filters would be available on the Media Library screen as well.
Basic Image Editing: Enable cropping, resizing and 90-degree rotation of uploaded images.
Better Media Settings: Enable the creation of more default media settings controlled in the Settings section, and allow settings to be overriddenduring the individual media upload process as needed.
Bulk Media Import API: Develop an API to allow for bulk media importing by plugins or importers.
Custom Image Sizes: Instead of hardcoded thumbnail, medium, large, etc. image sizes, custom image sizes would allow you to configure the maximum dimensions for each of the sizes.
Easier Embeds: Make it easier to embed third-party content such as YouTube videos, etc. Similar to Viper’s Video Quicktags plugin.
Media Albums: Ability to create and edit photo albums that can stand alone (as opposed to galleries being tied only to a post), including photostream functionality.
Media Metadata: Enable the use of categories and tags on media files.
Photostream: Create a Flickr-style photostream that simply displays images in a chronological stream (as opposed to grouping in galleries).
Post thumbnails: Choose an image to appear as a thumbnail with your post/article/excerpt.
Revised Media UI: Redesign the uploader UI to make uploading and editing media files a simpler, more user-friendly process.
These descriptions are repeated in the beginning of the voting survey, so if you forget what something means you’ll be able to scroll up to remind yourself. Only the first question (pick your top choice) is mandatory. This survey isn’t very long. Question two lets you assign a general high/low priority to each of the 11 feature suggestions, while question 3 asks you to rank the 11 features in order of priority from 1-11. A text box or two allow you to make additional suggestions, and that’s it. The survey is anonymous, and will be open all week, until Friday, July 10, 2009 at 11:59 PM UTC.
Results of the survey will be used to help developers decide which features to focus on for version 2.9. The 2.9 anticipated feature list will be posted here later in July, after the priority has been determined. How many contributing developers are available to code various features will play a large part in the decision-making process, so if you’ve ever thought of contributing code to WordPress development, now’s a great time to get involved. Developer chats are held each Wednesday in the IRC channel (irc.freenode.com #wordpress-dev) at 9 PM UTC (5pm Eastern, 2pm Pacific).
* – Other non-media features that were discussed either were determined to be better held for a future version for technical reasons, or were so widely desired that they were accepted for the 2.9 roadmap without requiring a vote.