We're happy to announce that this afternoon we released Movable Type 3.1.
We're extremely excited about this new release, and also about how quickly this free update is coming on the heels of Movable Type 3.0 Developer Edition. Whereas it took more than a year between 2.6 and 3.0, we're now releasing 3.1 only three months after 3.0 Developer Edition. The release of 3.0, combined with the changes in licensing, has allowed us to recommit resources to Movable Type development, and that's a big reason why you're seeing major features in a free update released so soon after 3.0.
Here's a look at the major features in Movable Type 3.1.
The Best of Both Worlds
The most prominent new feature in Movable Type 3.1 is the dynamic page functionality, allowing you to choose between static page generation or dynamic pages on a per-template basis. This allows you to optimize the performance of your weblog, providing you the best of both worlds: you can turn on static page generation for frequently-requested pages like your site index and feeds, and use dynamic pages for your monthly, individual, and other archive pages. This allows you to create the best balance of fast rebuilds and low web server load. Dynamic pages completely eliminate the need to manually rebuild your files; when you update the design of your archive templates, for example, the design of your site will immediately be updated without requiring you to rebuild.
The new category management interface in 3.1 gives you fine-grained control over the organization and display of your posts. You can easily create new subcategories, and move a subcategory from one parent category to another using a sleek, intuitive interface. Not only that, the subcategory support is extremely powerful, because it builds upon David Raynes' SubCategories plugin and thus inherits all of the tags included in that plugin. David has done a great job helping us integrate the plugin into the core Movable Type engine.
Using post scheduling, you can set a time and date for your posts to appear, permitting automatic updates to your weblog even when you're away. Using post scheduling, you can keep your weblog community up to date and involved, even if you're not at your computer to create new posts.
Building on the new extensibility in Movable Type 3.0 are new features that developers will appreciate. The object callback interface added in 3.0 allowed developers to intercept all calls to save, remove, and update data objects in the database. This added an infinite new amount of options for developers to hook into, but in 3.1 we're adding even more.
We've added a number of new application callbacks, hooks that allow developers to associate new actions with critical pieces of the application code. Plugins can now add code to be executed to filter comments and TrackBacks before they're posted; to hook into the publishing process, filtering and modifying the list of files that will be published; etc.
The plugin pack is the result of our Plugin to Movable Type 3.0 Developer's Contest. We got some great entries and both the winners of the contest and some notable finalists are included in the pack. Many of these plugins are still in active development (and enhancement stages) so consider them pretty cool works in progress. Included in the pack is information about all the developers and where to find more information on their plugins and projects.
So, be sure to check the Movable Type homepage to get the new release and for more information about the new features. When you're ready to get the new version of Movable Type just login to your administration area using your TypeKey and the download will be available on your account page.
Finally, we're devoting employee number three, Anil Dash, to the Six Apart Professional Network. Anil, in his new role as VP of the Professional Network will work to make available the sort of benefits needed to enrich the platform and our weblogging ecosystem. There are a number of benefits starting today, including a revamped Movable Type plugin directory, a members-only mailing list monitored by our team here at Six Apart, and a new site featuring links and updates on what's going on in our community.
If you're interested in making money with weblogs, making cool tools, or just making your work with weblogs easier, the Professional Network is designed for you. So, if you're interested in joining the network (it's free), be sure to visit sixapart.com/pronet for more information.