Things may be a bit confusing at the moment with two new and different names flying around. I’ll do my best to clarify things and we can use this topic for everyone to ask questions on the subject and provide input.
For those who are interested, the first thing to do is read this post (and the articles it links to) in the blog:
That post is pretty vague about things. So let me be more specific here. First, I’d like to make it clear that bbPress is not being replaced or abandoned or drastically changing direction. As for the two new names that have been mentioned, I’ll cover them below.
bbPress has a lot of shared code with WordPress. BackPress is the name of a new project which is attempting to normalise this shared code into a set of generic files that will simply plug in to both projects (and potentially others). This allows us to leverage the testing and improvements made to this shared code without the overheads of manually merging changes. This way we can spend more time on bbPress’ unique code and extending new functionality.
It has been public for a while that Automattic intends to create a hosted forums service based on the bbPress project code. The intention is to make this work much like the existing WordPress.com hosted service for blogs. Matt Mullenweg let it slip that the working name for the project (and not necessarily the service) is TalkPress. We probably won’t talk much about it here, but I can say that the majority of the code written to create this new project will be released as open source. Regardless of the name of that service when it launches, the name of this project, “bbPress”, will not change.
As for the upcoming work for bbPress, I’m happy to elabrorate here:
Along with the inclusion of BackPress into trunk, there are other things going on. We are in the process of implementing a new taxonomy structure for tags. Improving bbPress’ object cache to make it compatible with various WordPress object cache plugins. Replacing the fairly ordinary “favourites” system with a much more flexible and useful topic aggregation tool, and later on we will be incorporating a set of functionality based around the XML-RPC tools available in WordPress such as pingbacks and trackbacks.
The bbPress.org website is due for a clean up. Most importantly, the extend area will be upgraded to include a plugin repository similar in functionality to the one that exists on the WordPress.org website. There is a possibility that we will also launch a theme repository based on the same system. A little later on, we plan to re-design the whole site.
I hope this clears things up a little and I’m happy to answer any questions here. I can’t think of anything, but it’s possible that there may be some things that I can’t say about the hosted service project. Feel free to ask though.