So far, the users with the current version are very happy, even if WordPress abandons a certain circle of users. Since version 2.7 users with a small web package and not enough RAM are getting in trouble. The new functionality and comfort in the new backend is fairly highly loaded, so that users with RAM smaller than 32 MB will either have some problems or have to upgrade their webspace.
Also the new year will bring many new features to WordPress. Here is a quick peek at the up and coming next steps in WordPress development. Don't forget: WordPress doesn't maintain a ToDo list, gives little information to the community and I can only speculate due to my experience what the coming changes to future versions will be.
The next versions will follow the trend of growth. Several points were not able to be implemented in version 2.7, these are expected to appear in 2.8. The user can expect improvements and refinements in the surface, increase security through OAuth, more classes for the support of microformats and integration of geo data in posts, comments and attachments. The improvement of versioning, and integration of theme depending login and OpenID are also ideas for the next version.
Thoughts to implement the depiction of hierarchies in the database, by using the MPTT, are also made. This will allow a very clean and fast access. The speed performance will improve significant to the visitors of the blog. But also for developers, hierarchies in the database have significant advantages. The administration of the tags will be more comfortable and the redundancy of tags should be avoided.
New template tags could make it easier for theme authors working with the gallery, and the Quicktags „nextpage“ and „more“ will return to more importance.
In addition thoughts about an editor for the menu in the backend, and the code editor for themes and Plugins should now finally be equipped with syntax high lightning through the Project CodePress. On this note, thinking about the versioning of the template,which would improve the security and won't stop the blog if a mistake is made in the editor.
The popular Plugin to generate the XML Sitemap might be implemented in the core, even if the last word in the discussions has not yet spoken.
Further work on documentation in the core and help in the backend should also be strengthened. When working in the editor of the backend, you can imagine that features of WordPress and PHP will automatically include a link to the documentation.
Also the administration of the widgets is going to be more comfortable and feature rich. The dashboard modules will probably also get new features, because a lot of users want more widgets, and other columns that meet the major resolutions.
The ever-present topic of the existing bugs will also employ the next versions and one is thinking whether or not it is worth implementing less functionality and to fix existing bugs. Lets see, if the users are also of this opinion and whether or not they vote for these requests to be included in version 2.8..
On the wish list of WordPress users is still an improved search with more options - maybe you will find this integration in version 2.8. Regarding the conversion of the database on hierarchies, it would certainly be feasible and consistent with this system.
Of course, I could speculate even further, as many blogs did before version 2.7. The next versions will arrive, and may rejoice with sufficient material for experimentation and discussion. A certain tension is important and I would like to end with my remarks here and wish you a lot of fun and joy with the up and coming versions of WordPress.