Future of WordPress: Gutenberg Editor

Author - 93digital

Posted By 93digital

Date posted 18th Sep 2017

Category Blog, WordPress


The Gutenberg Editor is officially out for Beta testing. We put it through its paces to reveal the possibilities, limitations and features of the new plugin and what it means for WordPress users and our clients in the future.

What is the Gutenberg Editor?
In a nutshell, Gutenberg is the proposed new editor for managing content in WordPress. It was created with the intention of making it easy for WordPress users to add rich content to sites by replacing its various widgets with dynamic blocks, whilst creating a smoother and more immersive content editing experience.

It’s had over 1,000 active installs to date and currently has 59 one star reviews versus 25 five star reviews. The Gutenberg project was in development for 6 months and is currently in Beta testing, so its developers don’t recommend trying it out on production sites just yet.

Why install the Gutenberg plugin?
WordPress is a universally-loved platform, but the core team behind WordPress are always looking to improve the experience of writing and editing posts and customising a site for all users. Some platforms, such as Medium, have emerged which provide an arguably unique & enjoyable creative writing experience and some within the WordPress community have been driving for a similar user experience.

Because WordPress is so heavily relied upon by private and commercial users alike, an editor like Gutenberg has the potential to benefit every part of the WordPress ecosystem.

  • It makes WordPress easier to use by removing the need to learn a range of concepts — once you’ve mastered the block editor, you’re set
  • It has the potential to surface blocks that already exist
  • It gives users more advanced layout options (check out the example post here)

The future of Gutenberg Editor
There’s a lot of potential in the successful development of a new editor tool for WordPress. Agencies will be able to create interactive templates for clients, giving them the freedom to update their sites without fear of breaking anything.

Developers will get to enjoy a standardised format for including rich layouts for posts. Gone are the days of 20-step tutorials and explainer videos—instead we’ll be guiding clients on how to fill out page templates right into the interface (which will feel faster and more responsive).

All WordPress users—including complete novices—will finally have a simple way to build the websites they envisioned. This also includes usability on mobile and touch devices. Better yet, they’ll never have to use shortcode again. This should make upkeep and renovation simpler too.

The Gutenberg editor has more recently run into a few issues though – specifically down to some complex licensing issues with React, the Javascript library created by Facebook that was used to build the interface initially. Read WordPress founder Matt Mullenweg’s post on the issue here.

In conclusion
Our thoughts? It’s exciting to see WordPress evolving in this way. The traditional WYSIWYG editor was introduced roughly 12 years ago and, since then, it hasn’t really changed much. We are looking forward to seeing the team behind Gutenberg continuing to drive forwards the WordPress editor user experience, and thank them all for their hard work so far.

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