The first public beta of WordPress 2.7 is here at last. Join the thousands of people already testing 2.7 by downloading 2.7 Beta 1. As previously mentioned on this blog, 2.7 is bringing a new visual design. This design is almost completely implemented, but there are still a few areas that aren’t quite finished in Beta 1. There are also several glitches in certain browsers. Beta 1 provides the best experience in Firefox and Safari. Don’t worry, we are working on IE and Opera and will have those looking good in time for the final release.
Speaking of the final release, it will not be available on November 10th as originally scheduled. We are two weeks behind schedule at the moment. We need a little more time to finish the visual design, do a round of user testing against that finished design, and do a proper round of public beta testing. Our plan is to keep working as if Nov. 10 is still the release date. However, instead of releasing the final 2.7 on the 10th, we will make a release candidate available instead. The release candidate is intended to be a high-quality, almost-finished release that we are comfortable recommending for broad use. After Nov. 10, the focus will be on fixing high impact bugs turned up by those of you testing the release candidate. I suspect 2.7 will be ready for final release by the end of November. A specific date will be set as we progress through the public beta cycle and get a feel for how solid the release is.