As specified on Notch's blog , Minecraft update 1.6 will mostly be about bug fixes. It will however include a very special addition - mapping. It's going to be fun. Honest. Read on to find out why.
Your crafted maps will centre on the area where you originally create it, and will gradually fill in as you explore your surroundings. Reach the edge of the parchment and the map will stop updating. Even more interesting is the upcoming "cloning" feature. It means that two people can hold the same map and see real-time blinking dots to indicate their position, like an old-school radar thing. Changes to the map won't update in real-time - you'll need to revisit locations to update the topography.
We predict treasure hunts. Lots of treasure hunts. And servers packed with people role-playing pirates (please).
Notch is currently working on the new feature, but specifies that it could lead to all kinds of exciting futuristic things like "books and notes written by players, and possibly even custom paintings/hand drawn signs." Imagine Tom's Minecraft Experiment if we made him craft every page individually from tree pulp. It would be twice as good.