Gutenberg: A New WordPress Editing Experience

 

If you follow the tech community, you may have heard about Gutenberg. It is a new upgraded page editor in the new WordPress version that is coming out. Named after Johannes Gutenberg, this new content editor tries to revolutionize the way we produce media in the modern age.

Aimed at giving content editors greater control of the layout their pages take, Gutenberg promises a lot of features. These features allow developers and users with limited programming knowledge to easily design a website. Since many of our customers run their businesses on WordPress sites, we made sure to try it out!

At first glance, you will notice the page editor takes you into a visually simple and dynamic screen.

Current Gutenberg Editor

Gutenberg embraces the concept of reusable blocks to construct pages. This provides easy access to columns, buttons, and even content embeds from sources like YouTube and social media sites. As developers, this enables us to make our themes more flexible and modular. Our clients can then create pages using digital “building blocks” instead of coding layout templates for specific use cases. Better yet, the drag-and-drop ability allows you to quickly test how a page will look without constantly going back and forth between the backend editor page previews!

All this seems great, but there exist some known limitations that keep Gutenberg from being ready for prime time. Originally slated to release this summer of 2018, there have been quite a few roadblocks to push delivery back:

  • Many plugins and themes needing to adapt to using the new editor: We will be testing extensively at Buckeye Interactive as it reaches a stable version.
  • Reported issues from testers in the community that need to be fixed: For example, there were issues causing Youtube videos to embed incorrectly and even preventing saving new pages in my tests.
  • Confusion on the underlying platform being used: Gutenberg was originally built using ReactJS (owned by Facebook). However, the ReactJS license has gone back and forth between open-source and more strict licenses, causing the Gutenberg team to explore other options and delay progress.

With these factors to consider, we would expect this new editor to be available spring of 2019 at the earliest, and most likely even after that. We will continue to stay on the pulse and release updates as they arise. Reach out to us anytime with questions about how this affects your site and business. We are always here to help!