Let’s Welcome WordPress 5.2 “Jaco”

Let’s Welcome WordPress 5.2 “Jaco”

WordPress 5.2 “Jaco” is finally here and has brought major improvements with it. This is the second major release this year after WordPress 5.1 Release in February. As per the schedule, WordPress 5.2 “Jaco” was released yesterday on 7th May 2019. WordPress 5.2 is named after Jaco Pastorius in honor of renowned and revolutionary jazz bassist.

WordPress 5.2 “Jaco” is now available for download on your WordPress dashboard. There is an abundance of major improvements made for users to work with WordPress in an easier way. The features added in 5.2 will help users fix their site if something goes wrong. The new WordPress 5.2 release comes with the features that we already discussed in the Betas and Release Candidates.

The new major update includes features like Site Health Check Improvements, Block Editor Enhancements, PHP Error Protection, Accessibility Updates, New Dashboard Icons, Plugin Compatibility Checks, Developer Enhancements, and more.

Let’s have a detailed look at the major improvements in WordPress 5.2.

Site Health Check

The Site Health Check feature is here with two new pages – Status and Info under the Tools > Site Health. The Status page allows you to test your site’s health and provide the required fixes. Similarly, the Info page includes more debugging and support information. Know more about it here.

Block Editor Enhancements

A new reusable block-editor module has been introduced to expand the usage of the Block Editor in a context independent from the post editor. A bunch of new blocks including the RSS block, Amazon Kindle Embed block, Cover Focal Point Picker, and more has been added in WordPress 5.2. Also, you can now enable/disable blocks within the block inserter.

PHP Error Protection

The v.5.2 allows administrators to fix or mitigate fatal errors on their website. It was previously impossible to address without developer interference and modifying the codebase.  This includes five ways that developers can integrate with the new recovery mode features. Know more about this here.

Accessibility Updates

On the Accessibility side, you can now find improvements to markup for Admin tabs, to post formats in list tables, to Admin Bar submenu link markup, and to the Archive Widget dropdown all to help assistive technologies.

New Dashboard Icons

There are 13 new dashboard icons including Instagram, a suite of icons for BuddyPress, and rotated Earth icons for global inclusion.

Updated PHP

With the WordPress 5.2 version, there is a necessity that you update your PHP in order to run plugins smoothly. If the plugin requires a higher version of PHP than what you’re using currently, you will not be able to activate the plugin. Update your PHP version before installing 5.2!

For Developers

  • The minimum supported PHP version is now 5.6.20. As of WordPress 5.2*, themes and plugins can safely take advantage of namespaces, anonymous functions, and more!
  • A new theme page template, a conditional function, and two CSS classes make designing and customizing the Privacy Policy page easier.
  • 2 introduces a wp_body_open hook, which lets themes support injecting code right at the beginning of the <body> element.
  • With the addition of webpack and Babel configurations in the wordpress/scripts package, developers won’t have to worry about setting up complex build tools to write modern JavaScript.

The WordPress 5.2 Release was led by Matt Mullenweg, Josepha Haden Chomphosy, along with Gary Pendergast. They have done a commendable job leading the team. There are 327 volunteer contributors with props in this release.

Have you updated to WordPress 5.2 yet? Did this newest version of WordPress fulfill all your expectations? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.


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