When the playtest packets first came out, I was surprised at the new spell layouts. At least as far back as 2e, spells break many key stats out into their own separate lines at the beginning of the layout: level (okay, 2e handles that in the page header, a mortal sin against information management), name, components, school or sphere of magic, range, area, duration, casting time, and saving throw. Damage values and other details of the spell effect are contained in the text block. 3e adds spell keywords and whether or not Spell Resistance applies, but otherwise the spell format is just about the same. 4e makes some big changes by converting everything to a standardized power format, though the information is mostly similar. The major change is that attack bonuses, defenses, and damage/effect expressions are broken out into clearer pieces of rules text rather than inhabiting a text block of 1-5 paragraphs. For quick-and-easy use, it's pretty much the tops; what it doesn't do as well is anything other than mystically-induced facial murder. Utility spells are a bit text-y compared to attacks, while rituals are structured very nearly like 3.x spells.
So this brings us to D&D Next, where spells have only two to four pieces of information broken out: level, school, casting time (that is, whether or not this spell has a ritual form, and whether or not it is a word of power, which functionally if not literally reduces the spell to a minor action), and any higher-slot versions of the spell that can be cast. All other relevant information is contained in the spell's description and effect blocks. I'm not too sure what this accomplishes for the designers, except that it strongly encourages them to keep it as short and to the point as they possible.
These are basics, though, if you're the sort of person to read obscure (yet oddly charming) gaming blogs like this one, I have probably not opened your eyes to the wide world. The more interesting point is that they have introduced new rules concepts to differentiate and balance spells. Words of power I've already mentioned. Concentration is another; since a spellcaster cannot (currently) maintain concentration on more than one spell at a time, the designers keep a hand-brake on the most complicated and gameplay-slowing effects. Considering that clerics do not lose concentration due to damage taken in battle while wizards do, it also acts as a very hard-line incentive for wizards to stay well in the back. Mearls has recently commented, though, that some change is coming to this mechanic:
Wizards are the best at area attacks and control effects. I have to admit that I'm really happy with how the concentration rule is reining in spell stacking and buffs. My high-level playtests have limited any balance problems to specific spells, rather than the entire concept of dropping five buffs to create a death machine character or using glitterdust/grease/stinking cloud/wall of fire at once to turn an encounter into a joke. We're looking at breaking the concentration rule into two separate rules: one rule that covers concentration and the chance that damage ends a spell, and a separate rule (tentatively called focus) that limits you to one focus spell at a time.It's a good change, because while it gets rid of the inducement for wizards to stay in the back and avoid taking damage, it means that the DM can splash area damage a bit more without constantly wrecking whatever the wizard is currently maintaining.