WordPress is a blog publishing system written in PHP and backed by a MySQL database. WordPress is the official successor of b2cafelog, developed by Michel Valdrighi. The name WordPress was suggested by Christine Selleck, a friend of lead developer Matt Mullenweg.
WordPress releases are named after well-known jazz musicians. For example, WordPress 1.2 was code named Mingus (after Charles Mingus).
WordPress 1.5 was released mid-February 2005 and code named Strayhorn. It added a range of new vital features. One such is being able to manage static pages. This allows content pages to be created and managed outside the normal blog chronology and has been the first step away from being simple blog management software to becoming a full content management system. Another is the new template/theme system, which allows users to easily activate and deactivate “skins” for their sites. WordPress was also equipped with a new default template (code named Kubrick) designed by Michael Heilemann.
WordPress 2.0 was released in December 2005 and code named Duke. This version added rich editing, better administration tools, image uploading, faster posting, an improved import system, and completely overhauled the back end. WordPress 2.0 also offered various improvements to plugin developers.
On 22 January 2007, another major upgrade, WordPress 2.1, code named Ella, was released. In addition to correcting security issues, version 2.1 featured a redesigned interface and enhanced editing tools (including integrated spell check and auto save), improved content management options, and a variety of code and database optimizations.
WordPress 2.2, code named Getz, was released on 16 May 2007. Version 2.2 featured widget support for templates, updated Atom feed support, and speed optimizations. Wordpress 2.2 was initially slated to have a revised taxonomy system for categories, as well as tags, but a proposed revision led to the feature being held back from release.
WordPress 2.3, code named Dexter, was released 24 September 2007. Version 2.3 features native tagging support, new taxonomy system for categories, easy notification of updates as well as other interface improvements. 2.3 also fully supports Atom 1.0 along with the publishing protocol. WordPress 2.3 also includes some much needed security fixes.
WordPress 2.5, code named Brecker, was released 29 March 2008. Developers skipped the release of version 2.4 so version 2.5 contained two releases worth of new code. WordPress 2.5 saw a complete overhaul of the administration interface and the WordPress website was also redesigned to match the new style.