The WordPress Core User Interface team have been working not-so-secretly on a redesign of the widely-used WordPress Admin Dashboard. What started as flattening the icons for the 3.6 release has turned into a drastic revamp of entire look-and-feel of the user interface. Flat and responsive design have taken the industry by storm. WordPress is pushing even further with unique user interface controls and to address specific problems when it comes to publishing content.
The most jarring changes are to the admin sidebar and navigation bar, MP6‘s darker background colors, flattened icons and splashes of color that make your content the focus. By utilizing @font-face and Open Sans via Google Fonts, the interface gets more modern typography than the Arial & Helvetica of old-school ‘browser-safe’ font-families. Automattic has also put together their own icon font called Genericons, which allows for a single vector-based file format instead of numerous images for all the icons throughout the dashboard.
The MP6 style has been active on WordPress.com blogs for several weeks now and is officially slated for WordPress 3.8 planned for December. The redesign of WordPress admin along with the new default theme TwentyFourteen will be the highlights of the 3.8 release cycle. Many other features such as Featured Content, Content Blocks, Front-End Editor and Widgets UI Refresh are being developed in unison as plugins which will be integrated into core later once they have matured from alpha/beta testing.