Community Member Brad recently made me aware of a video on WordPress.TV which contained Matt Mullenwegs Keynote session at WordCamp Germany. In this keynote, Matt discusses a wide range of things such as the history of WordPress/B2, Feature requests for 2.8, confirmed features for WordPress 2.8, unveiling of P2 (Prologue 2), short glimpse of his new blog design, and the GPL. I have not read much in the way of coverage based on what Matt presented in this video so here is the cliff notes version for those interested.
Wordcamp Germany: Keynote Matt Mullenweg from Phil v. Sassen (sassen.org) on Vimeo.
Matt Mullenweg’s first blog was powered by MovableType
Matt then moved onto something called B2
B2 was the first time Matt ever got involved with an Open Source Project
Matt’s passion for typography lead him to writing a patch for B2 which was accepted into the core creating a natural high which is the fuel that keeps Matt developing for Open Source software.
Lead developer of B2 disappeared for 9 months which caused users to create forks of the software.
Matt’s favorite software at the time was TextPattern. Matt said that if TextPattern was open source, WordPress wouldn’t exist.
Mike Little is the co-founder of WordPress and his comment on a blog post Matt made about the blog software dilemma is what really fueled Matt to fork B2.
Matt mentions that WordPress.org blogs have an average of 4.96 plugins installed with the repository now over 4,000 plugins.
Matt says 2008 was big because of the move towards user-driven development. Clearly illustrated with the redesign of the back end.
Matt asks the crowd for feature requests for WordPress 2.8. Someone mentions the photoblog function as seen on Matt’s blog. CMS functions for organizing pages. And a few others.
Matt confirms what will be in WordPress 2.8.
Lots of theme support/upgrades. Entire theme directory browseable and installable from the backend like plugins. Something called CodePress theme editor to provide WYSIWYG template editing with code syntax highlighting. Any functions that are used in the theme will have links next to them which will take you to documentation pages for those functions. Theme upgrades.
Widget improvements such as management.
Custom Taxonomies. Introduced in WordPress 2.3 in the form of tags. A way to create richer semantics.
Matt then addresses using WordPress as a CMS. Matt did not expect people using WordPress as a CMS. WordPress was created as a means of being the best blog publishing tool possible but he showcases many examples of people using the software as a CMS.
Matt gives a sneak peak of his new blog design.
Matt also features the Monotone photoblog theme.
Matt makes the statement that he believe the previous 5 years have been about plugins and that the next 5 years will be about themes.
Matt thinks BuddyPress will be a big thing in 2009. He calls it Facebook in a box.
Matt then talks about Prologue and then showcases a new version code named P2. Prologue is considered to be Twitter in a box. Matt shows off prologue 1 versus prologue 2. P2 is now much wider with comments and everything else is now directly embedded onto the site. The entire site can also be managed using keyboard shortcuts. Comments are ajaxified and are inline. Also, someone who leaves a comment on the site will be able to see other comments published on the site as they are published in real-time. Almost like an ajax based chatroom. Use can use P2 as a real-time chatroom with all the benefits of a blog.
Even though Matt stated P2 would be released that week, I’ve double checked today and it is not currently available to the public. I couldn’t find it on the WordPress.com Theme SVN either.
Matt finalizes his presentation by going over the four freedoms of the GPL.
Matt says if he woke up one day with devil horns and wanted to do something evil, anyone could take the entire WordPress codebase and fork it, redistribute it, charge for it, etc. The ultimate liberty.
This is the first time I’ve heard of Matt actually bringing up the topic of the GPL in his presentations. This makes me wonder if because of the GPL debacle involved with the theme repository a few months ago if he is now trying to educate people across the world why WordPress is licensed under the GPL and the freedoms associated with the license.
One thing about Matt is that he is a great speaker and keeps the crowd entertained as well as focused on the subject at hand. Special thanks to the guys from WordCamp Germany for uploading this video to WordPress.TV.