Normally, we include the new features in the post title, but it wasn’t possible for WPML 1.5.0, `cause there are too many of them!
So, without further delay, here are the new features in WPML:
Compatibility packages for themes and plugins
Much of WordPress‘ strength comes from the thousands of plugins folks have created for it.
Now, WPML allows people to write their own mini-plugins that make themes and plugins fully multilingual.
Right now, WPML 1.5.0 includes compatibility packages for Thematic theme, ThemeHybrid and Atahualpa theme. You’ll be able to use any of these themes to power multilingual sites without having to make a single change. And, it’s upward compatible, so even if the theme updates, the multilingual support keeps working.
Seeing is believing. Have a look at this clip showing how Thematic works with WPML 1.5.0:
Language fallback for blog posts
Most folks translate every page in their sites, but not all blog posts. Pages stay forever (the Internal forever), but posts fly by, so not everyone has the time to translate every post to every language.
WPML now allows to display the translated blog with a mix of translated and original posts.
If there’s translation for a post, it will be shown. Otherwise, you’ll get the post in the default language.
To control this, go to WPML->Languages and look for More options. It’s available only when WPML is running in Advanced mode.
A special thanks is due to Łukasz Sielski who suggested it in the first place. We didn’t quite follow that implementation, but we did get excellent ideas from it.
Language switcher customization
Remember our recent post about 3 most urgently missing functions in WPML?
Well, you can strike the first item – Butt-ugly language switchers.
As of WPML 1.5.0, you’ll be able to easily customize the language switcher to match it to your site’s look, from within WPML’s language menu. Your language switcher can still be butt ugly – but it’s not our fault anymore 😉
You can choose what to include in the language switcher (flag, native language name, current language name) and all colors in the language switcher.
All your changes appear instantly in the preview, so you can see how it looks before updating the site.
There are even three preset color schemes to choose from – white, gray and our butt ugly blue (which actually looks fine in wpml.org).
Other cool features
Besides these major new features, there’s a whole list of other, less notable new features:
Notes for translators per page or post
People who use our professional translation service, can now add notes for the translators. When you edit the page, or just before sending to translation, you can add a note.
This note will be visible to all translators, translating to different languages.
So, if you’re writing about something that the translator might not understand (like a new product), it’s a good idea to include a couple of sentences as a note.
New optional argument for breadcrumbs separator
If you don’t like WPML’s default separator between items in the breadcrumbs trail, you can now specify it. This is an additional argument in the <?php do_action(‚icl_navigation_breadcrumb‘); ?> call.
Better import and export for .po files for String Translation
When you import .po files, WPML is smart enough now to just update existing strings and not create new ones.
Export writes either a .pot file if it goes without translations or a .po file if translations are included.
Better synchronization between translated pages
WPML now synchronizes the template, comment-enable and traceback-enable between translated pages. This means, if you make a change in one language, it will be applied to all translations.
Along with new functions, we’ve also been able to fix quite a few bugs. The most famous ones are:
- Fix page parent synchronization for translation.
- Removed hard-coded flag sizes from HTML and moved to CSS and easy customization.
- Make sure that cache entries are not accumulated in the database.
- Report a 404 errors if translations don’t exist for a URL.
- Fixed professional translation interface problem for certain Windows servers.
- Allow WPML to run from non-default directories (there was a problem with the AJAX loading in that situation).
- Added some native language names to the database and fixed flags for some languages.