The Gutenberg WordPress Editor is Here
Gutenberg is finally here and you’ll no doubt have some questions that you want to ask about it. Well, so do lots of other people, which is exactly what FAQs were invented for…
Just what is Gutenberg?
Gutenberg is the project that’s brought a whole new editing experience to WordPress. It’ll help you to create and edit posts that look rich and yet are still easy on the UI.
The creation experience will be pretty much effortless – instead of writing and inserting shortcodes or custom HTML, you’ll be able to use Gutenberg “blocks”.
Being able to put down amazing layouts with lots of features and embeds is one of WPs biggest features, and blocks will allow you to do away with HTML, shortcodes and c&p-ing URLs. With blocks, you can use the same sort of process for adding all sorts of content.
What are these “blocks”?
The current WordPress editor is an open text window—it’s always been a wonderful blank canvas for writing, but when it comes to building posts and pages with images, multimedia, embedded content from social media, polls, and other elements, it required a mix of different approaches that were not always intuitive:
The previous WP editor was an open text window, which is brilliant for writing, of course. When it comes to inserting images, embeds, polls and so on, you’d have to stop, think about what you were doing and embrace another process. Swapping between processes and platforms tended to slow most people down, so blocks offers a consistent way to add different sorts of media without breaking off and “shifting gear” several times.
All you need to do is choose your block and get going!
What’s the writing like?
With Gutenberg, it’s not all about the mixed media and the add-ons. The writing experience should be seamless as well, with paragraphs becoming blocks in their own right. Hopefully you’ll find writing that little bit easier too (although Gutenberg can’t put down that tricky first sentence for you…).
Which browsers will Gutenberg work on?
Gutenberg will work with all major browsers, as long as you’re using the current or the previous two versions.
Can I design my own blocks?
Yes – the API is all there and over time there’ll be more tutorials and how-tos.
Can you drag and drop to move the blocks?
You can just drag and drop to change orders and layouts!
Will Gutenberg make my plug-in obsolete?
The idea behind Gutenberg is to make WP more agile, easier to use and to make businesses more successful. Think of it as modernisation rather than obsolescence and try to embrace the change. You can find out more about it before making the update so that you hit the ground running.
What if I don’t want to make the move?
There’s the Classic block, which is the same as the old editor, but it comes as a block. There’s also the Classic Editor plug-in so you can restore the older editor and this version will be supported until December 2121, giving you more time to transition.
Is Gutenberg fully-accessible?
It will be eventually. Not every feature is at present, but it’s certainly being worked on. You can help with this process too, if you can test and code.
Do I need to start using Gutenberg now?
Of course you don’t have to, but the sooner you dip your toes in, the sooner you’ll be able to use all the new widgets. The chances are that your rivals are going to jump on board pretty quickly, so don’t get left behind.