Gutenberg, you may have heard of the original Gutenberg. The creator of the printing press. How much that changed the world. Now we have WordPress Gutenberg.
Quite a tribute to name something after that and that’s just what the new back end editor for WordPress is called. Not yet integrated into the platform itself but it soon will be so it matters to all WordPress users, current and future users.
Of which there will be millions!
Yet they have released a WordPress Gutenberg plug in for people to try it, test it, give feedback on it, use with their own plug ins and themes, ie developers are integrating their tools with it. Getting it to work well with any plug ins and themes is important.
I am writing this post using the plug in and I still have the option to use the old editor if I don’t like it, or if I
want need to edit the post with the classic editor I can. There is an option on the “all post” link. 🙂
Seeing as WordPress is powering 30% of the internet and probably growing, it’s a huge change for a lot of people. People rarely like change. But to embrace it is to grow. WordPress has to grow too and adapt itself as it grows. This is a big step in that direction in my opinion.
What’s good about Gutenberg
- It’s very minimal and clean for a nice writing interface, after a short while you get used to it with the lack of distractions around what you are doing.
- The bigger writing screen is a massive improvement.
- The boxes layout as you write is really neat, once you understand it and it’s really not that hard to grasp. You click that plug in link above and see what it’s like.
- Each box has it’s own functions, you can add anything so simply, just a click and choose and it does it all for you. You can duplicate any box too.
- You can even save them, so you may use a certain paragraph alot or quote, or intro, whatever it is you can save it. Neat.
- Each box is an element of the post, so it can be moved up and down the post with a click. Each paragraph is it’s own little box. No more cutting and pasting.
- Writing this list you press enter and it goes to a new line, but doing it on a normal paragraph opens a new box below.
I can create the post more visually as it also shows in the editor itself what the post content will look like. Much simpler than the old preview after editing code and such. We still have the preview function.
Just adding these text columns was so simple and it’s also in place as I type giving me an idea of what it will look like, no need to worry about formatting just type and get the words down. Writers will like it.
Easy to add boxes using the small + on the top left of each box element. The formatting toolbar pops up but as you type it hides itself. Neat.
The boxes allow you to add almost anything. Images, list, gallery, shortcodes, html, widgets, so many other things and I can see that growing more functional.
A simple click and I can add the latest post from this site. . .
- Out of the comfort zone
- Plants, truth and blockchains
- Gratitude is powerful
- The internet is dying?
- Beautiful weather for a bike ride
Adding images is easier than before, no need to cling on to the old ways. 😉
Overall as I only installed it earlier in the evening and had a play around with it on a post which I just kept as a draft to test things, I am impressed by it. By it’s simplicity, it’s ease of formatting everything for you and it’s ease of moving things around. Like playing with lego blocks.
On the sidebar on the right as you type (if it’s showing) if it’s not click the “cog wheel” you have your normal list of things like feature image, cats and tags etc. I notice one of them is a new “table of contents” regarding the blog post which is an interesting idea. I like the fact you can also hide this whole sidebar and have a page wide content view.
What don’t I like about Gutenberg
To be honest I don’t find much I don’t like or find anything confusing or overwhelming. It’s feels intuitive to a point. Although I do have one puzzling thing I have noticed, there is no “url” field showing anywhere. No idea what the slug will look like until I do the title maybe. I often leave that until last. Soon find out! 😉
TO ADD : Went back up to title, yep, it’s there when you do that title but there is no obvious way to edit the url. Oddly.
Oddly when I went back to the classic editor the formatting showed bigger gaps between the paragraphs. I only went back to that to check the url was correct, which is was.
Um… yeah, that’s it for what I don’t like! 🙂 For now.
Where Gutenberg is going
Well, if this is anything to go by and I think it is a massive step in the right direction, I think it will be a game changer. Not only is it great for writing a post. Imagine when they get to stage 3 of this project and it’s changing layouts and alsorts.
Could it spell the end of themes?
Could it lead to everyone being able to build the whole site from within the Gutenberg editor? Yeah, extend it’s functionality that far. 😉
The whole thing build in boxes and making them drag-able is where it all is these days. I think they onto a winner here and I think we should embrace it.
Could be a couple of years and it’s all changed. I think it’s just WorPress doing what it does well, making it as simple and usable as possible and integrating it for long term benefits. The current editor is over a decade old.
Exciting times is what change creates. 🙂
In my mind anyway.
What about you? Have you tried this yet? Will you before it’s rolled out?
What are your thoughts on it?