“If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.” But let's try.
3rd party plugin support
One of the biggest challenges for VersionPress, and the reason why it's still in the Early Access phase, is WordPress plugins that store custom data in the database. In v3, we have the vanilla WordPress tables covered pretty well (README) but external plugins currently have no easy way to plug into this mechanism.
That will be changing in v4 and you if you're a plugin author, please join the discussion in ticket #1036. This will cover not only data schemata but also the general architecture for describing changes which will become significantly more flexible in v4.
Core versioning improvements
Shockingly, we're still not done! The next release will focus on these areas:
- Media. Currently, images and other large files are committed into the Git repository which is generally problematic. We're looking for ways to at least avoid putting all the “thumbnails” into the repo, or to employ something like Git LFS to help with this. #492
- Composer workflows. Advanced WordPress users and stacks like Bedrock use Composer already and we're going to support it very well in v4 – actually, @JanVoracek has done most of the work on it already and it looks really cool. #1037
- Then, there are some things that need to improve like customizable entity ignoring (#1032), LF line endings for our INI files (#728) and other internal but important stuff.
Overall, the goal is to have the internal formats and versioning mechanisms as stable as possible, and basically production-ready by the time v4 is released. I'm not sure we'll be able to remove the “Early Access” badge by then and it's still more likely to happen with v5 but generally, v4 should be a really solid release.
UI and usability improvements
As with every release, we'll be improving usability of VersionPress – adding new features and polishing the existing ones. This is what is currently scheduled for v4:
- Branching and merging visualization (#1043)
- Integration with various admin screens (#1026)
- Search improvements – autocomplete (#805), negative search (#813), search by ID (#808), “find similar” (#1025)
- Notification system (#215)
- Diff improvements (#1024)
Last but not least, we'd like to spend some time setting up Continuous Integration server for our extensive test suite, create a Docker dev environment etc. This should make everyone a tad more productive.
Overall, v4 is about preparing VersionPress for the real world. It should be available later this summer and we encourage everyone, especially plugin developers, to join us during this release to work out the formats that will be used in the years to come. Again, ticket #1036 is where to go and discuss things.