With WordPress 2.1 RC1 installed, I dump in my themes to see if things crash and burn. Happily all themes worked out of box (only minor changes required). Kudos to the WordPress Developers for making the transition easy. After some probing with the default theme, there are indeed some changes under the hood. While your existing theme may still work, some template tags has been deprecated in 2.1. Changes and new functions as below.

WP2.0: get_settings()
WP2.1: get_option()

Found in multiple files
get_settings() still works but has been deprecated

WP2.0: wp_list_cats()
WP2.1: wp_list_categories()

Found in archives.php, sidebar.php
wp_list_cats() still works but has been deprecated

WP2.0: wp_specialchars()
WP2.1: the_search_query()

Found in searchform.php, sidebar.php
wp_specialchars() stills works and has NOT been deprecated.

WP2.0: get_links_list()
WP2.1: wp_list_bookmarks()

Found in sidebar.php
get_links_list() still works and has NOT been deprecated. However wp_list_bookmarks() is far more powerful, accepting more parameters for customisation.

WP2.0: N.A.
WP2.1: language_attributes

Found in header.php
Add lang, xml:lang and dir attributes to the html tag. For more info, see Language and Text Direction in WP 2.1


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