I can imagine that it is easy for some to skip over a blog post announcing the availability of a beta thinking "oh, they just fixed some bugs." But to so with this most recent release of Movable Type would be a mistake. One of the things that makes Movable Type stand out as a product is an incredibly professional, yet agile development process that allows for constant innovation in additional to a steady improvement upon stability and quality, without putting our releases at risk.
So while Movable Type 4.1 Beta 2 contains a huge number of bug fixes as it should being a beta, the development team still found time to include a some significant new features and advancements to the platform as a whole. Most notably:
AtomPub Support - Atom is something Six Apart has been very involved in since it first emerged as potentially the first Internet standard for syndication over four years ago. We released one of the first implementations of the fledgling protocol over 4 years ago and we were also among the first to support the Atom syndication format when it emerged as an official standard across all of our products. And while Movable Type has long supported the Atom Publishing Protocol in MT4.1 Beta 2 we introduce support for the official AtomPub standard, making it easier and more reliable then ever to use third party posting clients with your Movable Type installation.
Redesigned Asset Listing and Editing Screens - Beau Smith took the lead on redesigning the asset listing screen to include thumbnails of the assets you have created in your system. In addition, he designed the Edit Asset screen which includes such valuable information as a list of posts/pages in which that asset it utilized, embed information for including that asset elsewhere on the web and additional meta data about the asset. Good work Beau!
Turing Complete Templating Language - The development team checked in the last of many enhancements to our templating language that dramatically improves upon what one can possibly publish using Movable Type. MT4.1 introduces additional looping constructs, additional variable types (like hashes and arrays) and control flow structures like If-ElseIf-Else).
Beta 2 will be the last beta until the new year, but we will continue to blog through out the holidays to make sure people can continue to get their Movable Type fix. But in case you manage to tear yourself away from the computer for an extended period and you don't check in again for a while, everyone at Six Apart would like to wish you a great holiday season and a wonderful New Year.