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October 09, 2021

Gutenberg Times: How can we make building blocks easier, New 2022 Theme, Presistent User preferences and more – Weekend Edition 188

Howdy,

I am so thrilled that I now have more time to work on community outreach, organize Live Q & As and learn more about Gutenberg development. There is also a lot going on in the WordPress community. People are sharing plenty. Last week, the edition had more a theme related focus, this week, we have a developer focus, it seems, despite we just had our Live Q & A on bock-based theme. See for yourself!

Did you see the WPPodcasts.com site by the team around the HeroPress network, Topher and Cate DeRosia! All WordPress podcasts in one spot! All because of RSS feeds. A standard published in 1999, now hardly mentioned anymore.

The six-hour shutdown of Facebook, helped many of us yet at again to appreciate the open web, and the people who keep it that way. And yes, that’s all of you, dear readers, the theme, and plugins developers, site builders, content creators and site owners using WordPress.

Keep it up and keep creating!

Yours, 💕
Birgit

Table of content

 “Keeping up with Gutenberg – Index 2021” 
A chronological list of the WordPress Make Blog posts from various teams involved in Gutenberg development: Design, Theme Review Team, Core Editor, Core JS, Core CSS, Test and Meta team from Jan. 2021 on. Updated by yours truly.

Using Gutenberg for Content Creators and site builders

Anne McCarthy collaborated with the Gutenberg developers and designers to describe the continued progress on accessibility in using the block editor for existing and future features. She has details on the Navigation block’s accessibility as well as for the Gallery Block Refactor. You’ll also find an asorted list of high impact improvements.


In his post on the Torque Magazine, Will Morris shows you how you can use the WordPress Pattern Directory. He explains first what Block patterns are and what the Directory entails. Then he walks you through how to make a block pattern from the directory usable on your site by copy/paste. Another way is adding a block pattern from the Inserter panel. Both variations are explained in a step-by-step way and should get a WordPress newbie or just someone who just switched from classic editor to the block editor, started.


Marius Jensen updated his Persistent Block Editor Settings plugin He added support for the following user settings:

  • – Block breadcrumbs
  • – Most used blocks
  • – Caret positioning

All settings are stored with the individual user profile information, and persist in between computer or browser changes.

Theme development in for Full-Site Editing

Ben Dwyer described in his post the role Universal Themes will play in WordPress ecosystem. He defined the term Universal Theme as a theme that works like a classic theme for a site that has not enabled Full-site editing, and act like a block-based Theme for those sites that do. He shares code-snippets for templates. Dwyer also stipulates, that Universal Themes are a temporary measure, as their need will diminish with Site Editor’s improvements further down the line.


Kjell Reigstad just introduced the new Twenty-Twenty-Two theme. It’s bird themed, and I truly loved the backstory of this inspiration. Reigstad tells the story that an array of birds joined his family every morning for breakfast at their bird feeder, and the theme is a mediation over what he saw. My husband and I had a similar breakfast with wildlife experience. Our birds were a bit larger: a white duck, herons, ibises, and Limpkins.

The theme will be a pure block-based theme geared towards the Full-site editing with difference color palettes exposed to the Global Styles interface and interesting block-patterns. In the post, the images are mock-ups. The Themes still needs to be built. Reigstad teamed up with Jeff Ong for the development.

WPTavern published two posts about it, too


This week’s Live Q & A recording – Going from classic to block-based Theme with Ellen Bauer, Anders Noren and Carolina Nymark – is now available on YouTube. The blog post with resources and transcript will follow next week.

“Creating a scaled and fluid type system takes a bit of creativity, especially in the context of WordPress block themes, but here’s what I’ve explored.” Rich Tabor tweeted. Using a Fluid Type Scale in WordPress Block Themes with Theme.json

The Future of Theme Switching

Anne McCarthy published the Summary from the Theme Switching Exploration in context of the FSE-outreach program and the 10th call for testing. It had some interesting insights, like the expectation that user created templates are thethered to the theme and don’t stay around after switching a theme. Or that custom block styles, font-color and type choices survive after the theme is changed.


In her post Adventures in Block Theme Switching, Channing Ritter, team member on the WordPress design team, used the comments from contributors as inspiration for three different approaches on the entrance for theme management:

  1. The first idea envisions a redesing of the Theme Live Preview to allow for switching theme after a preview with a way to apply existing styles and templates.
  2. The second idea makes theme management available via Global Styles sidebar of the the Site Editor.
  3. The third idea takes the idea of shipping more then one color schemes from the Twenty-Twenty-Two Theme and envisions a way to actually use template parts from all installed themes on a site.

It definitely is easier to understand when you watch the video and here longer explanations for each idea. Share your ideas and comment on the once before us! This is the moment you can influence where the team is taking the next phase of development.


Custom Blocks Development

Join us next week, Thursday, October 14th, 2021, for a Discussion with Helen Hou-Sandi, Mark Jaquith and Riad Benguella on How can we make building blocks easier? It’s a continuation of a discussion started by Jaquith a few weeks ago:

The tweet about an exploration from Jaquith, inspired by Hou-Sandi’s blog post, spurred a flurry of conversation around custom block development. The premise? “What if building custom blocks for the Block Editor was as easy as supplying attributes and a block of HTML? What if this produced React editing code and PHP rendering code without a build step?” All three panelists are long-time WordPress contributors who have been different approaches on tackling these ideas. We will have more links and resource for you on the Live Stream.


This week, I published a proposal for a new event series on the Make Core Blog: Proposal: Gutenberg Developer Hours series of events. It would be great if you could comment on this idea and let me know if you are interested in being part of the panel. It’s meant to be a low-effort way to help out other developers, without getting into all the administrative part of organizing those sessions. That’s what I will do.


Lee Shadle was a guest on the WPTavern Jukebox podcast on How Blocks Create New Opportunities. Podcast host, Nathan Wrigley discussed with Shadle the world of Gutenberg blocks and the new world of WordPress product business. It worth listening to the show undistracted. Shadle and Wrigley go deep into change mangement and how business owners might be able to approach building for WordPress in the classic way and slowly move into the block-based way without jeopardizing their revenue or the time they spend with their families.


Join us on October 28th at 12 pm EDT / 16:00 UTC Gutenberg Times Live Q & A: Converting classic widgets to blocks Learn from the BuddyPress team members, Mathieu Viet, David Cavins, Varun Dubey.

Using create-block script to build blocks

David Gwyer started a new site on the domain Innerblocks.com to share his experience developing for Gutenberg in tutorials and resources. The first tutorial is titled: Creating a New Block for the Gutenberg Editor.

Gwyer also curates Gutenberg Developer Resources on GitHub.


Phil Sola has experimented with the WordPress create-block script and found a way to use it also for a multi-block plugin. He published the code on GitHub: Multi blocks plugin.


In this Thursday-Twitch-Stream, Ryan Welcher also covered using create-block for a multi-block plugin in a step-by-step video tutorial. The GitHub repo is available here.

For this I only got to listened for the first 10 minutes and learned about the Dependency Extraction Plugin for webpack that replaces references to external packages to reference to WordPress global script that are already available in any WordPress instance. Because of that all your plugin doesn’t need to bundle all the packages, and be kept really small.

In previous Twitch Streams Welcher covered:

Welcher holds regular Live Twitch streams on Thursdays 10:30 am EDT / 14:30 UTC. Follow him and you will be notified when he goes live.

Need a plugin .zip from Gutenberg’s main (trunk) branch?
Gutenberg Times provides daily build for testing and review.
Have you been using it? Hit reply and let me know.

GitHub all releases

WordPress Events

Page Builder Summit

Page Builder Summit is coming back and will be happening October 18 – 22, 2021. Nathan Wrigley and Anchen Le Roux just published the schedule

Here is the list of Gutenberg / Block-editor presentations

  • Forging the Future with Full Site Editing with Anne McCarthy (10/18 – 9am EDT)
  • The Future of Building WordPress Websites with Brian Gardner (10/18 – 12pm EDT)
  • What does Full Site Editing Mean for Page Builders? with Joe Casabona (10/19/ 9am EDT)
  • Customizing WordPress Block Editor for Client Projects with Birgit Pauli-Haack (10/19/ – 10 am EDT)
  • Mastering modern WordPress with Full-site Editing & Custom Blocks with Rob Stinson (10/20/ – 5am EDT)
  • How to Build Any Page Layout Using Kadence Blocks with Jake Pfohl (10/20/ – 12pm EDT)
  • Building a Custom Blog Archive with Blocks with Mike Oliver (10/21/ 11am EDT)
  • RIP Page Builders with Chris Lubkert (10/19 – 1pm EDT)

The schedule is not out yet. Sign-up for the waitlist to receive notifications.


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by Birgit Pauli-Haack at October 09, 2021 05:47 AM under Weekend Edition

WPTavern: WPCloudDeploy Brings Site and Server Management to the WordPress Admin

WPCloudDeploy recently launched version 4.10.5 of its rapidly-maturing WordPress plugin of the same name. The project is a WordPress-native replacement for SaaS services like Cloudways, Ploi, SpinupWP, and others.

Customers still need to hook up to a cloud server provider, such as Digital Ocean, Linode, AWS, or elsewhere. However, the project seeks to cut out the middleman for developers and agencies running multiple sites. They are specifically targeting those who would routinely manage 20 or more.

“It’s a true plugin where everything you need runs on your own site (except, of course, the other servers you are provisioning and managing which reside at their respective cloud server providers),” said WPCloudDeploy owner Nigel Bahadur.

Server list screen.

Technically, WPCloudDeploy opened to the public in March 2020, but Bahadur was not ready to aggressively start letting the community know about it. He said the team is now at a point where they have a core group of users who are happy with the plugin. They have been rolling out new functionality every month for a year and a half and feel like it goes above and beyond alternatives.

“We were basically in stealth mode for most of that time — we did enough marketing to get a core group of users and then tried to make those users happy,” he said. “We even offered a heavily discounted lifetime license last year during the Black Friday sales period –- the folks that purchased then are very happy right now.”

With a mature project, it is time to branch out into the larger WordPress developer and agency market.

The plugin promises its customers that they can deploy unlimited WordPress-optimized servers and sites to any cloud or bare-metal server. It has direct integration with 10 of the most popular cloud server providers.

Server status and overview screen.

However, provider integration is limited to which pricing plan the customer decides on. The core tier, which costs $199 per year, only works with Digital Ocean. The business tier runs $499 and adds Linode, Vultr, and UpCloud to the mix. For the full range of providers, customers must upgrade to the all-access plan for $799. Both of the top tiers also have a lifetime purchase option.

Each tier of the plan is not merely limited to integration with more providers. For example, agencies can sell site and server subscriptions via WooCommerce through the business or all-access packages. White label and teams features are available at all levels.

Selling Subscriptions through WooCommerce

WPCloudDeploy allows agencies to sell subscriptions to cloud servers or WordPress sites through WooCommerce. Because of the feature’s recent interest, Bahadur said it will likely be a focus area next year for more enhancements.

“For servers, you can create subscription products where the user gets to choose the provider and location,” he said. “Or you can create them where each product represents a single provider (useful if you want to price your AWS servers differently from your DigitalOcean servers).”

They have their own separate service that builds on top of this called WPCloudPanel. The team created it with Beaver Builder, WooCommerce, WooCommerce Subscriptions, and Ninja Tables. The entire site required no additional custom code.

WooCommerce-integrated sales page.

“For sites, you can create subscriptions where the site is automatically placed on a particular server in a particular region,” said Bahadur. “Or you can create them where the site is placed on any available server from an admin-defined list of servers. It’s a great way to get a highly customizable end-user purchasing experience using a toolset you already know.”

Developers and agencies are not necessarily limited to WooCommerce. Instead, they can take the team’s code and port it to other eCommerce or membership plugins. One such customer is currently working on a MemberPress solution.

“Since the WPCloudDeploy code is just hooking into various WooCommerce actions and filters, it’s basically just finding a similar hook in their favorite membership plugin, copying the relevant parts of our WooCommerce integration code, and then ripping out and replacing the WooCommerce-specific function calls,” said Bahadur.

From Inception to the Future

Bahadur said his team started the project to meet their own needs. “We really liked the idea of being able to use our own servers for WordPress sites. But at the time, there were still a lot of security questions and other usability and support issues that we were running into from the usual pool of SaaS providers.”

He then decided that his team would build something themselves. Jokingly, he said he completely underestimated the project and how far he would take it.

“I can’t say that, back in 2019, I looked too far beyond the WP ecosystem because what I wanted was WP-specific functionality,” he said. “Cloudways was one of a number of providers I was using at the time, and they offered other services beyond WP. But the overall concept was the same whether it was WP or a server that was suitable for another ecosystem. I think I looked at every WP option there was at the time, including command-line services like WordOps.”

He said he was not necessarily sure it was important to have such a project in the WordPress space.

“I think what is important is to constantly remind folks of how much WordPress can do, how powerful it is, and to keep battling against the perception that WordPress is less secure than other options,” said Bahadur. “If you can use a WordPress plugin to run and manage all your servers and sites and/or even act as a hosting service, then we’ve pushed the WP boundaries far beyond what anyone thought of doing two years ago.”

He thinks it is even more important that WordPress professionals to be able to build products that compete against the feature depth and “sexiness” of SaaS services.

“Think about how much more capital would stay within the WP ecosystem if you had a project management plugin that was as good as, say Clickup.com or Monday.com,” said Bahadur. “Or a CRM plugin that was as good as Hubspot. But to build plugins with that level of polish requires lots and lots of capital in the first place. Even though WP is a billion-dollar ecosystem, somehow we still don’t have the ability to finance the build-out of world-class functional components with a world-class UX experience, and I think that’s a shame — and a major opportunity for VCs.”

He does not think WPCloudDeploy has quite met the smoother UIs of SaaS services yet. However, he believes it can prove that it rivals or exceeds such competitors in terms of functionality.

“So the next time someone asks, ‘can you really build that on WP?’, maybe they can point to WPCD and say, ‘Hey, if you can build this on WP, then, hell yeah, we can build that thingamajig that you want…,” said Bahadur.

The team maintains a Trello board with a public roadmap. The most-requested feature right now is support for OpenLiteSpeed, an open-source web server.

However, Bahadur said the most tantalizing possibilities for the long term come from working with the REST API.

“Unlike SaaS tools, you’ll be able to customize it using our built-in ones as a template,” he said. “Ambitious agencies will be able to add their own plugin to extend our REST API without waiting for us to add new endpoints that meet their needs.”

Eventually, the core plugin will be available on GitHub. Developers will be able to contribute new endpoints to the core product via pull requests.

by Justin Tadlock at October 09, 2021 12:26 AM under Plugins

WPTavern: Hacktoberfest Adds GitLab Support, Updates Participation Requirements to Combat Open Source Project Spam

The 8th annual Hacktoberfest is underway with a few important changes this year. Hacktoberfest, a virtual event sponsored by DigitalOcean and community partners, has traditionally encouraged open source contribution during the month of October by rewarding participants with a t-shirt for submitting pull requests. The initiative has added support for participation on GitLab this year, a highly requested expansion that will include more open source projects that aren’t hosted on GitHub.

Participation has grown from 676 people the first year to over 150,000 in recent years. In 2021, the program has been changed to be only applicable to opt-in repositories after being linked to an influx of spam for open source maintainers in previous years. Maintainers of popular projects were getting frustrated by wasting their time handling nonsense PR’s and marking them as spam during Hacktoberfest.

Starting this year, pull requests will only count towards participation if they are in a repository with the ‘hacktoberfest‘ topic and once they have been merged and approved by a maintainer or labeled as ‘hacktoberfest-accepted.’ Participants must contribute four accepted PR’s to an opted-in repo in order to qualify for the free, limited-edition Hacktoberfest t-shirt.

“Maintainers are the backbone of the open-source community and this year, we’re focused more than ever on ensuring maintainers are receiving the love they deserve,” DigitalOcean Senior Community Relations Manager Phoebe Quincy said. “Our maintainer-friendly rules include allowing repos to opt-in to Hacktoberfest, ensuring only accepted pull requests count towards participants’ Hacktoberfest goals, and for the first time ever, enabling maintainers to receive a Hacktoberfest t-shirt without having to submit pull requests.”

Open source maintainers and contributors can join anytime during the month until October 31st. If you maintain a WordPress-related open source project, you can get your project ready to receive contributions by adding the ‘Hacktoberfest’ topic to your repository, tagging issues with the ‘Hacktoberfest’ label, and adding a CONTRIBUTING.md file. Maintainers are also encouraged to select issues that have a well-defined scope and are self-contained. Merging PR’s, adding the ‘hacktoberfest-accepted’ label, and marking ‘invalid’ or ‘spam’ contributions will all count towards engaged maintenership participation.

by Sarah Gooding at October 09, 2021 12:20 AM under hacktoberfest

October 08, 2021

Post Status: Post Status Excerpt (No. 27) — CaboPress and Owning Your Own Content (For Some)

“While WordPress does democratize publishing there are people today that don’t or (perhaps worse) can't take advantage of it.”

In this episode of Post Status Excerpt, Cory comes back freshly tanned from CaboPress to share his experiences and one big takeaway point that everyone can appreciate. David brings up how Facebook's outage this week made him start to give pause before quipping on Twitter about “owning your own content.” He asks if or how WordPress and the open web can help the people for whom Facebook is the internet.

Also covered in this episode: A shout out to WordCamp US 2021 which was held virtually for the first time on October 1st — a fine virtual event after only eight weeks of planning!

Every week Post Status Excerpt will brief you on important WordPress news — in about 15 minutes or less! Learn what's new in WordPress in a flash. ⚡

You can listen to past episodes of The Excerpt, browse all our podcasts, and don’t forget to subscribe on Spotify, Amazon Music, Google Podcasts, iTunes, Castro, YouTube, Stitcher, Player.fm, Pocket Casts, Simplecast, or by RSS. 🎧

🔗 Mentioned in the show:

🙏 Sponsor: iThemes

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by David Bisset at October 08, 2021 03:59 AM under Everyone

WPTavern: Contextually Display Content With the Block Injector Plugin

Jamie Marsland, the founder of Pootlepress, reached out a few weeks ago, asking for feedback on a beta version of Block Injector. It was a commercial plugin his team at Pootlepress was gearing up to launch. Earlier this week, they released an updated version that he said he was happy with as an initial release. For a first outing, it has proved to be a handy plugin.

The concept is not new. Plugins for dynamically injecting content in various places have long existed. In the past, these plugins have allowed users to create content through settings panels, widgets, or even the customizer. Some themes provide such options too. However, Block Injector is the first I have seen that takes this concept and moves it into the block arena.

The plugin creates a new post type for creating injectable content. Essentially, users can add any blocks they want via the editor and display them at a custom location on the front end.

Adding a coupon to show at the top of a specific post.

The plugin has four different conditional rulesets that users can define:

  • Location: Which pages of the site the content appears on.
  • Position: Where on the page the content should display.
  • Exceptions: Post IDs to exclude.
  • Schedule: Date and time-based start and end dates.

Marsland published a six-minute video that breaks down how it all works:

After using Block Visibility, a dedicated plugin for contextually displaying blocks, it is hard not to see anything else as inferior. Its location-based logic provides more flexibility than most will ever need. I have become accustomed to its granular controls. Block Injector’s rules are limited in comparison but should work well for the majority of use cases. I almost want to merge them to see what I can create.

Block Injector really shines when paired with WooCommerce. The development team added several shop-specific location options. They also expanded on the positioning rules to utilize a range of WooCommerce hooks. This can create a powerful set of tools for store owners, particularly for seasonal sales. For example, users can display a coupon for the month leading up to Christmas.

Adding a coupon to show on the WooCommerce shop page.

One area where I hit a snag was with themes that had grid layouts on the homepage. When injecting content at the top or bottom, it would often get sucked into the post grid.

This issue is evident in the following screenshot when using the Flock theme:

My expectation was that it would have spanned the area above the posts. However, I am not sure how easy this would be to fix from the plugin’s end because there are only specific places where it is possible to hook into the front-end output. Attempting to correct this via CSS for all grid themes would be futile. However, as we continue to move toward 100% block themes in the future, it may open some alternative routes for injecting such content.

On the whole, I like the direction I am seeing from this first version. Having run theme and general WordPress support for over a decade, I had an untold number of users ask for similar solutions. I doubt there was a week that went by where I did not field such a question. Block Injector should save many a lot of time.

I would call the plugin necessary more so than particularly groundbreaking. The community needed someone to step up and build it for the block era.

Also, Marsland created a fake marketing video for the plugin if you are looking for a quick laugh:

That tweet is just one in a series of videos under the #WPFakes hashtag, one of my favorite things on the internet right now.

Version 1.0.1, the copy I am currently testing, does have a few PHP errors when WooCommerce is not active in specific scenarios. These are trivial to fix, and I have passed along the details to the team. However, I did want to note this to readers who might consider purchasing this for use without WooCommerce. I expect the problems will be fixed in the next release.

by Justin Tadlock at October 08, 2021 12:39 AM under Plugins

October 07, 2021

WPTavern: Default Theme Releases May Become More Frequent Following WordPress 5.9

photo credit: Matt Bango

The new Twenty Twenty-Two default theme coming in 5.9 hasn’t even been fully built yet but many WordPress enthusiasts who saw yesterday’s design reveal are already eager to use it on their sites. Contributors have just 40 days before the scheduled Beta 1 release on November 16 to get the theme ready. While that seems like an impossibly tight deadline, more frequent default theme releases may be ahead on the horizon.

In a couple of short paragraphs tucked into the end of the announcement, Kjell Reigstad commented on the future of default theme release frequency:

The community has produced a dozen best-in-class themes together, and we’ve come to look forward to a new one arriving at the close of each year. That said, themes are in a transition period today, and it seems like this may be a reasonable time to step back and to re-evaluate the annual cadence with which we build default themes. 

Innovations like theme.json, block templates, and block patterns are making theme development far simpler, and are providing new ways for users to customize their sites. There’s reason to believe that the community can leverage all this to build more frequent and diverse theme and customization solutions for our users in the coming years. 

It wasn’t clear whether Reigstad meant that the cadence of default theme releases would be slowing down or speeding up. I asked him for clarification and he confirmed that the idea is to consider the possibility of speeding up.

“I hope these new tools allow us to create and release more frequently than we’ve been able to in the past,” Reigstad said.

“The general idea came up as part of the ideation process for the default theme this year, and that part of the post is meant to give it a wider platform for conversation in the community. I’m excited to hear what other folks think since this idea is in its very early days! I really think there’s a lot of opportunity here.”

 The ideation process he referenced, which varies from year to year, included early conversations with project leadership to plan and make sure the theme is aligned with the future of WordPress.

Before the discussion officially kicks off regarding increasing default theme release frequency, contributors are focused on getting Twenty Twenty-Two out the door. Reigstad said people can jump in on testing now, as the general structure is already in place. This includes fonts, colors, and basic templates, although details like spacing and specific block styles are still in progress along with block patterns. If you want to contribute to making Twenty Twenty-Two the best it can be, check out the development happening on GitHub.

by Sarah Gooding at October 07, 2021 08:14 PM under Twenty Twenty-Two

October 06, 2021

WPTavern: The HeroPress Network Launches as a Multi-Project Portal

Husband-and-wife duo Topher and Cate DeRosia announced the launch of the The HeroPress Network earlier today. It is a collection of content from various sites they are working on in a centralized location.

“Its overarching goal is to be a hub,” said Cate DeRosia. “It will display the newest items from around the HeroPress Network, as well as news from the community (to be added in shortly). We can also post information that we think is helpful or educational.”

The “hub” will incorporate content from at least eight projects:

The team launched WP Podcasts two weeks ago, making over 7,000 current episodes from dozens of WordPress shows available in one place. Find It WP is currently in beta and will be the next project to launch on or before October 19. They will soon launch the public Slack group with dedicated channels for different types of professionals.

The HeroPress Network homepage.

“You could say it’s like the portals of yesteryear,” said DeRosia. “With HeroPress expanding into 8+ or more entities, we wanted one place for people to go and get the most current glimpse of what’s happening.”

She also teased the idea of expanding their educational offerings in the announcement post. However, news on that will have to wait until they build out the projects currently underway.

The team will open funding options on October 24. The HeroPress Network is a for-profit company, but its goal is to make all of its content available for free to the community as a whole.

The original HeroPress.com website did not hit its funding goal in 2015. It attracted 33 backers who pledged $21,855 of its $60,000 AUD goal on Kickstarter. There was some early pushback, particularly from WordPress lead developer Andrew Nacin who cited its “unambiguous hero worship” and the initial male-only lineup of speakers as problems. However, much has changed in the six years since the fundraiser.

DeRosia called the first fundraising event a test to see how the community would receive it. The project has never been funded financially since then. Hosting and resources have been provided for the project, and a few other companies have occasionally donated toward their time and tools.

Despite failing to raise their initial funds, the project continued onward. Today, HeroPress has been a success by simply providing a platform for people to share their journeys in the WordPress world.

Andrey “Rarst” Savchenko wrote the first essay in March 2015. Since then, the site has published over 200 others.

“It’s always been a challenge to figure out how to fund the project,” said DeRosia. “When the pandemic hit and sponsors had money they couldn’t use on WordCamps, they started some conversations with us. We’ve been kicking around ideas since then and feel The HeroPress Network gives us the best resource for reasonable funding. We want to be giving value back to both the community and supporters, and the diversity of what makes up the Network provides more options.”

If everything falls into place, DeRosia herself or one of their daughters could have a salaried position for the project. Her background is in English and journalism, and she described it as a “dream job.”

I asked DeRosia why she was personally vested in this project. What was it that got her up every morning to build it?

“Topher and I both grew up rural poor here in the US,” she said. “We come from communities dying because there aren’t jobs. WordPress has always been such an excellent answer to this.

“With HeroPress.com we’re able to provide a stage where people can tell their stories of how they’ve built their lives regardless of where they lived or what circumstances they were living in. That’s great, but it only goes so far.

“Now with The HeroPress Network, we can provide simplified, searchable access to practical tools that anyone can use to craft the life they want using the WordPress platform. We can also demonstrate how community and business can work together to get the best for both.

“If the option for something better is out there, I want to help people find it. Helping new people get started in WordPress brings a richness to the community that it needs to thrive. Helping established businesses connect with people and resources continues the growth.

“It’s just so incredible to have the privilege to see people build relationships that allow them to flourish. And who wouldn’t get out of bed every morning to do that?”

by Justin Tadlock at October 06, 2021 11:44 PM under heropress

WPTavern: First Look at WordPress’ Upcoming Twenty Twenty-Two Default Theme: “The Most Flexible Default Theme Ever Created for WordPress”

Twenty Twenty-Two, the new default theme coming in WordPress 5.9, was unveiled today on WordPress.org. The design goes full steam ahead in support of full site editing and new customization capabilities.

Like its predecessor, Twenty Twenty-One, the new default theme makes some bold design choices wrapped around a central theme. In this case it’s bird illustrations, complemented by Source Serif Pro for headlines, and a delicious array of patterns for limitless combinations.

Image Credit: Introducing Twenty Twenty-Two

The theme will be developed on GitHub until it’s ready to be merged into core. Kjell Reigstad, an Automattic sponsored full-time design contributor to WordPress.org, is leading the design with Jeff Ong leading development. In the announcement he sets expectations high for users to be able to make the theme their own.

“With the advent of Full Site Editing and Global Styles, themes are changing structurally and functionally to enable far more avenues for customization than users have come to expect in the past,” Reigstad said. “To take advantage of these new abilities, Twenty Twenty-Two has been designed to be the most flexible default theme ever created for WordPress.”  

In addition to the wide variety of patterns expected to ship with this theme, Twenty Twenty-Two will offer a lively selection of six pre-designed color palettes. Reigstad shared a video preview of how they instantly change the character of the theme. (see below) Combine this with the promise of being able to manipulate every aspect of the theme’s appearance through global styles, and users are in for a treat with WordPress 5.9.

“Twenty Twenty-Two will take advantage of a wide network of page templates, headers, footers, and other patterns so that users can easily make the theme their own,” Reigstad said. “In another nod to the behavior of birds everywhere, these will offer a balance between fun and utility: some are irregular and unpredictable, while others are straightforward and traditional. Together, these patterns will act as a window into all of the possibilities that the theme enables.”

The design preview for Twenty Twenty-Two has received overwhelming positive feedback on Twitter and in the comments of the announcement. Many users were excited to see a default theme that can be quickly transformed for so many applications. Too many default themes have only been applicable to a narrow set of use cases. In the past, users had little hope of being able to change things around to make the design work for their needs. Unrelenting progress on the block editor and full site editing has made it possible for Twenty Twenty-Two to become the most user-empowering default theme in WordPress’ history.

Reigstad said the theme will be “built for Full Site Editing first,” with as little CSS as possible, and all theme styles configurable through theme.json wherever possible, so users can edit them through Global Styles.

“Twenty Twenty-Two is designed with the acknowledgement that its default appearance is not most people’s endpoint,” Reigstad said. “Everyone deserves a truly unique website, built on a solid, well-designed foundation, and Twenty Twenty-Two aims to help them achieve that.”

by Sarah Gooding at October 06, 2021 08:59 PM under Twenty Twenty-Two

HeroPress: What’s Next For HeroPress?

Closeup of a woman's hands holding a double handful of dirt with a green plant growing out of it.

For years now people have been asking me “So what’s next for HeroPress?” and I didn’t have a good answer. I was content to let it just be inspirational essays forever. But as the years went by, I began to feel more and more that I wanted to go one step further, and start providing resources to those newly inspired people. Some direction, now that they’re convinced they that too can Do It.

About a year ago my wife Cate asked, “What if we were able to fund this, so I could take on the HeroPress work as my full time job? Then, we could start doing a lot more.” And thus began a series of conversations that still hasn’t ended.

We didn’t want to ask people to help financially without offering them something more in return, so we started brain storming about what we could make that people would value. We came up with MANY ideas which we didn’t follow up on, but we also came up with some GREAT ones that we did do.

Great Ideas We’ve Acted On

Last week we released WP Podcasts, which aggregates all the episodes from all the WordPress podcasts we can find, so you can search by keyword or tag and find individual episodes across all of them.  For playback and subscription we direct you back to the original site, driving traffic back to the podcaster.

You probably already know about Hallway Chats, and then there’s this site (HeroPress.com).

Soon we’ll be releasing Find It WP (think Yahoo for WordPress), a curated listing of everything in WordPress. A curated listing of everything in WordPress.  Every podcast, every email newsletter, every dev agency, every theme shop, and on forever. If it’s WordPress, it’ll be in there, assuming they choose to sign up. There are a couple more sites in the hopper as well, but I’ll tell you more about them another day.

Today’s Announcement

TODAY I’m excited to announce the next new thing for HeroPress: The HeroPress Network. This is a site that serves several purposes.

  • To aggregate everything from all of the HeroPress properties into one site, the latest essay, Hallway Chat, WordPress Podcast episode, new thing on Find It WP, etc.
  • A community news blog. Think People magazine, but less smarmy.
  • A platform for video and text tutorials and training produced by the HeroPress team. You can go see the first WordPress Tip Of The Week right here!

Future Needs

As you can see, with what we have going on now plus what we have planned, we have MORE than enough work for a full time employee.

For this reason, on October 24th 2021 we’re going to open up funding opportunities.

This isn’t an Event with a goal and a thermometer to track funds received, or balloons and a band. This is going to be more like a Patreon, where we’re looking for people who are willing to support the project long term. Don’t get me wrong, we won’t turn down one-time help, but if this is going to grow it needs long term support.

On the technical side of funding, we’re choosing to use GiveWP instead of Patreon for a few important reasons.

  1. We’re all in on the WordPress ecosystem. We want to show that it can be done, and done well, in WordPress.
  2. Another is the old story of owning your platform. We don’t want to depend on other sites if we don’t have to. We’re going to have to write some code to make GiveWP work like Patreon, but that just means we’ll have one more thing to give back to the community.

It’s been nearly seven years since HeroPress started, and I’m excited to see it blossom into something even greater.

Photo by Nikola Jovanovic on Unsplash

October 06, 2021 08:07 PM under Yahoo

WPTavern: WordCamp US 2021 Draws More Than 3600 Attendees

WordCamp US took place online last Friday. Organizers pulled off a successful one-day event with an engaging group of speakers who highlighted timely and important topics. There were 3,608 people registered for the event and the livestream had as many as 400 concurrent viewers at a time.

“Online events are notoriously difficult to get attendee stats for, particularly an event like WCUS 2021 where the audience is global and spans so many time zones,” WCUS organizer Cate DeRosia said. “Many people will watch what they can and catch the rest in their own time.

“We really love this as it makes for not only a more accessible event, but a more educational experience as it’s so easy to rewatch a session as many times as an individual needs.”

When asked on Twitter why the event’s organizers didn’t opt to use a more interactive event platform like Hopin or Veertly, organizer Jen Swisher said some of the platforms they looked into had accessibility issues or prohibitive costs.

As part of the leadership trio for WCUS, Swisher said the team had three issues they focused on when choosing a virtual venue: cost, accessibility, and time for implementation.

“We had a $30K budget,” Swisher said. “To use one of these platforms would have doubled it minimum. There was also a strong chance we would have faced additional costs from our production company for our resources through them to learn this new platform and connect it with their equipment.

“This would have resulted in additional time and resources spent on fundraising or increasing the costs of our sponsor packages. This would have forced the volunteers on the sponsors team to do twice as much work to get the sponsorship necessary to fund other platforms.”

Even with the simple setup of two YouTube livestreams, organizers provided a high energy, welcoming reception to attendees. They managed to bring some levity during these challenging times apart from one another. Swisher highlighted a few deliberate choices organizers made to give this year’s event a more lightweight feeling:

“We didn’t try to replicate the in person experience,” she said. “Making the choice to actively recognize that this isn’t like in person events in any way gave everyone permission to think about this event differently. By throwing out ‘the book,’ and starting from scratch, we were able to really ‘dream’ for the event, instead of what it could have been.”

Instead of planning a big multi-day event, organizers opted for a single day focusing on a smaller subset of topics. They also selected chat moderators and emcees that would bring enthusiasm to the event and gave them the autonomy to make decisions on the fly.

“The team agreed that a big event with multiple days and large numbers of tracks would be exhausting to plan and exhausting for attendees to sit through,” Swisher said.

After WordCamp US 2020 was cancelled due to pandemic stress and online event fatigue, the organizing team needed to make some changes to avoid the pitfalls of the previous year. Organizers were drained, spread thin, and frustrated by delayed tasks and external stressors. The WCUS 2021 team turned this around to make it a more healthy culture for volunteers.

“We fostered an atmosphere where stepping back to take care of yourself was strongly encouraged,” Swisher said. “This resulted in a team of folks that was well rested and able to handle the extra responsibility that comes with planning a WordCamp.”

“We gave the teams the autonomy necessary to get their work done. Decision making was done democratically, but decisions that didn’t impact the whole team didn’t involve the whole team, making it possible to move more agilely.”

The speaker selection was outstanding this year and the recorded sessions will soon be available on WordPress.tv after the production team finishes uploading them. In the meantime, if you are eager to watch or re-watch sessions now, one attendee, Marcus Burnette, has published a post with direct links to session recordings from the livestream.

by Sarah Gooding at October 06, 2021 03:29 PM under wordcamp us

WPTavern: #8 – Lee Shadle on How Blocks Create New Opportunities

About this episode.

On the podcast today we have Lee Shadle.

Lee is a WordPress developer at WP Draft, and by his own admission is obsessed with building block based themes, plugins and websites. He’s been using WordPress for many years and as soon as the Gutenberg project was announced, he decided he was going to explore it and learn how it worked.

He runs a small agency building sites with blocks as well as with 3rd party page builders.

I first saw Lee when he presented at WordCamp Europe earlier in 2021, and his passion for working with blocks and React was obvious. It’s pretty clear that, right from the start, he’s embraced the possibilities that blocks offer, both now and in the future.

At the time of recording this podcast, many are still unsure about what blocks are for, and what they will be able to do down the road, but Lee has thrown himself into figuring out what’s possible, and it might come as a surprise just how powerful they are.

We start our conversation by addressing whether Gutenberg was something that the WordPress project actually needed. Was it necessary to build a new tool which would require people to learn new skills and new techniques?

We then get into some concrete examples of how blocks will add new capabilities to websites. Some of the examples show that complex operations can be handled within single blocks. These possibilities were once the domain of plugins and shortcodes, and now they can be deployed and configured by anyone who edits content.

We talk about the obstacles which Lee encountered whilst learning how to build blocks. In his case, he worked on projects which he knew he would enjoy. We also touch upon some resources he used to assist in his learning.

There’s also a discussion about the commercial landscape for block developers and how blocks might become a new way of generating revenue. Although we’re not there yet, it might well be that in the future, WordPress users will be on the lookout to purchase blocks in the same way that they now buy plugins and themes. Perhaps there’s even scope for a market of inexpensive blocks which have limited functionality.

As you’ll hear, Lee is very optimistic about the future of WordPress, with blocks at it’s core.

Useful links.

Lee’s Twitter account

Stimulus Benefits – Lee’s calculator block

Aino

Block Visibility

Newsletter Glue

React for beginners

GenerateBlocks

Nick Diego

Mike Oliver

Brian Gardner

Transcript
Nathan Wrigley [00:00:00]

Welcome to the eighth edition of the Jukebox Podcast from WP Tavern. My name is Nathan Wrigley. Jukebox is a podcast which is dedicated to all things WordPress, the people, the events, the plugins, the themes, and the blocks. Every month, we’re bringing you someone from that community to discuss a topic of current interest.

If you like the podcast, please share it with your friends. And you might also like to think about subscribing, so that you can get all of the episodes in your podcast player automatically. You can do that by searching for WP Tavern in your podcast player, or by going to WP tavern dot com forward slash feed forward slash podcast.

You can also play the podcast episodes on the WP Tavern website, if you prefer that approach. If you have any thoughts about this podcast, perhaps suggestion of a guest or an interesting subject, then do head over to WP tavern dot com forward slash contact forward slash jukebox and use the form there. And we would certainly welcome your input.

Okay, so on the podcast today, we have Lee Shadle. Lee is a WordPress developer at WP Draft, and by his own admission is obsessed with building block-based themes, plugins, and websites. He’s been using WordPress for many years, and as soon as the Gutenberg project was announced, he decided he was going to explore it and learn how it worked.

He runs a small agency building sites with blocks, as well as third party page builders. I first saw Lee when he presented at WordCamp Europe earlier in 2021. And his passion for working with blocks and react was obvious. It was pretty clear, right from the start, he’s embraced the possibilities that blocks offer both now and in the future. At the time of recording this podcast, many are still unsure about what blocks are for and what they will be able to do down the road. But Lee has thrown himself into figuring out what’s possible and it might come as a surprise to you just how powerful.

We start our conversation by addressing whether Gutenberg was something that the WordPress project actually needed. Was it necessary to build a new tool, which would require people to learn new skills and new techniques.

We then get into some concrete examples of how blocks will add new capabilities to websites. Some of the examples show that complex operations can be handled within single blocks. These possibilities were once the domain of plugins and shortcodes, and now they can be deployed and configured by anyone who edits content.

We talk about the obstacles which Lee encountered whilst learning how to build blocks. In his case, he worked on projects, which he knew that he would enjoy. We also touch upon some resources, used to assist him in his learning.

There’s also a discussion about the commercial landscape for block developers and how blocks might become a new way of generating revenue. Although we’re not there yet, it might well be that in the future, WordPress users will be on the lookout to purchase blocks in the same way that they now buy plugins and themes. Perhaps there’s even scope for a market of inexpensive blocks, which have limited functionality.

As you’ll hear Lee is very optimistic about the future of WordPress with blocks at its core.

If any of the points raised in this podcast, resonate with you, be sure to head over and find the post at wptavern dot com forward slash podcast, and perhaps leave us a comment there.

And so without further delay, I bring. Lee Shadle.

I am joined on the podcast today by Lee Shadle. Hello Lee.

Lee Shadle [00:04:16]

Hey Nathan.

Nathan Wrigley [00:04:17]

It’s lovely to have you on the podcast today. Before we get stuck into it, I’ll ask the traditional set of mandatory questions at the start. Would you mind telling us a little bit about yourself, your background in WordPress, technology? You can go back as far as you feel necessary. Probably limit it to the WordPress side of things.

Lee Shadle [00:04:35]

Okay. So I was born in Columbus, Ohio, but I shouldn’t go back to Ohio days. Huh? I shouldn’t go back all the way back to my birth. So I am a self-taught developer, mostly front end developer, and I’ve been doing it for about 10 years. I started building custom client sites and I made my way to WordPress about five years ago. And really, the thing that actually really drew me in was when Gutenberg launched, because it really used all my skillsets of JavaScript, React, CSS. And so since then, I’ve been really the last five years or so been focused on building blocks. I kind of nonstop, but kind of had an insane obsession with it. You could ask my wife, all I do is talk about blocks and building blocks. So to pay the bills, I’ve been building client sites and I’ve been trying to build tools with blocks to help streamline my processes of the client work. So that’s what brings me here today. Is that black building obsession.

Nathan Wrigley [00:05:39]

Very nice. Well, we will get thoroughly immersed in all of that in a little while. Just before that, I wanted to know what your thoughts are on whether or not WordPress needed to put this into core, the ability to build your website now let’s say, but initially, to create your content around blocks. Did you feel at the time, obviously subsequently you’ve gotten into it and been enjoying what it has brought to the table, but I’m wondering if you can cast your mind back to that time when it did come in. Was there a light that went off and you thought, actually this is tremendously interesting or were you like many people were, and to some extent still are kind of reluctant to use it and keen to have the old editor back or move away to some sort of proprietary page builder?

Lee Shadle [00:06:25]

Being a front end developer, when I started hearing about React being in WordPress, that really got me going, because to me, it really opens up a bunch of possibilities that can really allow you to build, you know, really snappy interfaces and really fun products and stuff that you couldn’t build before.

You can almost, I know there’s been talk about WordPress being the OS of the internet. And I think it really opens up that possibility. I started dipping my toes into WordPress right before Gutenberg launched. And I did a deep dive into building themes and plugins the old way. And then right about a year into me learning how to do that, I started diving deep into Gutenberg. And, I definitely think it was a good move. Although all change, you know, change can sometimes be painful and there’s definitely a steep learning curve, but I think the pain is going to be worth it in the long run.

Nathan Wrigley [00:07:29]

I feel that at the moment, there is a lot of pain being experienced by a variety of different people. And some people like yourself have decided to absorb that pain and go with it. Other people have found it very difficult and there’s been politics, shall we say has crept into WordPress in a way that I’ve not really seen too much of before, and people wishing that it hadn’t have been put into core and that it had of been a plugin instead. Other people obviously just wished that the entire thing would go away and ended up forking WordPress and creating this ClassicPress version of WordPress. So it has really divided the community. I feel that maybe talks like this, will address that a little bit because you’ve obviously been exploring it and you’ve probably got some great ideas about things that it will enable that perhaps the rest of us haven’t really foreseen.

I know for my part, I’ve seen a few videos of things that people are building. Products that are either just about to come out or have already come out and you just think, okay, that’s interesting because that’s totally wedded to the idea of a block and without the block methodology, that exact thing could not have been done, possibly even as a plugin. So I’m just curious if you’ve got any thoughts about what can be done with blocks that we could not have done before.

Lee Shadle [00:08:44]

I’m going to go as a bold as to say, I think, think of every traditional plugin or theme business in WordPress. I believe with the advent of Gutenberg, everything is ripe for disruption.

I think every single aspect, like think about forms or think about pop-ups or think about payments. Really any facet of the WordPress economy that you can think of, that people are making a living on, I think it could be disrupted with Gutenberg.

Nathan Wrigley [00:09:15]

Yeah. I think you’re probably right. We’ve certainly seen some . Of those things. I’ve seen some projects certainly around the forms space where, you know, you just think, oh, well the interface of Gutenberg really does lend itself to creating sort of drag and drop form builder. It’s really remarkable for that. Aside from those sort of more general ideas, do you have any concrete examples of things that you’ve gotten yourself into and projects that you’ve created, or been party to where there’s been an end result that we could all identify with and understand why you’re so excited about it.

Lee Shadle [00:09:46]

I’ve been building blocks, all kinds of different types of blocks, trying to uncover. I run a small agency, so my workflow and system of building a site for client is super important to me. And I know there are a ton of tools with the classic way of building WordPress built around optimizing that workflow. But that’s really been my focus is how do we leverage the system to really like streamline the workflow of building sites for clients? I build a lot of sites for fun for myself. Really. I’m all about building quickly.

I don’t know if I told you this Nathan, but when I was in my previous life, I used to own a restaurant and I came up with, you know, the menu and the food, and imagine it was an Italian version of Chipotle at the early days of Chipotle, and, you know, I ran it for a couple years and it just failed miserably. I lost, I kind of lost everything in that. But I learned a lot of great lessons and one of those lessons was I want to be able to keep stepping up to the plate. And in order to do that, to keep trying, I needed to come up with systems and processes that allow me to do that in a way that it isn’t heavy handed. And I can just hack away at an idea in a day. And I kinda think that is the essence of WordPress. And I think that Gutenberg is kind of taken us back to that essence of, okay, what can I hack away at? I think we’re just starting to hit the point of stability with Gutenberg and with full site editing coming out and block-based themes where you’re going to be able to build full blown prototypes and mock-ups of, you know, not just like static sites, but some pretty complex stuff pretty quickly. Imagine launching, you know, I don’t know if you saw Flip WP, they’re launching a marketplace for selling WordPress plugins and themes and WordPress businesses. I think something like that is going to become a lot easier to do. Like iterating on an idea like Flip WP, like say I want to try it, test the waters of building a marketplace for buying and selling WordPress businesses. I think, being able to build startups and more complex businesses is going to become a lot easier to do with Gutenberg

Nathan Wrigley [00:12:10]

When you’ve been creating your blocks at the beginning, I’m just curious as to how obviously you fell into it and you’re now enjoying it. Were there any significant obstacles along the way that you encountered? So as an example, was there enough documentation? Was it fairly easy to get yourself up to speed with how to create your own blocks? Was there a lot of support around? Were there some channels or books that you perhaps ended up relying upon? I’m just trying to get to the idea of how easy or difficult it was, or perhaps still is.

Lee Shadle [00:12:39]

I’ll be honest with you. It’s been a challenge. It’s been a frustrating journey. There’s been documentation and there’s been the Gutenberg GitHub repo has been a great resource for, learning as well. Just seeing how they’re doing things, but it hasn’t been easy. I actually, you know, a tool. I think you actually heard me talking about it at wpplugin dot com where you can quickly generate a block plugin. And the idea behind that is there’s all these different mental models of building a block. I think the hardest part is learning, what can you do with a block? How can you do it? And shaping that mental model has really been a challenge. Honestly, I’ve been very self driven and if it wasn’t for that, that really has kept me going. I’ve had a long-term view of where everything’s going and from the place I’m coming from being a front end developer, it’s really made it, it has made it easier for me. I do think, if somebody really wants to learn blocks, they need to learn React. And I think something like taking like Wes Bos’s React for beginners course, I took that course and it’s a great resource for learning React. Just getting kind of the nuts and bolts of, you know, the underpinnings of Gutenberg.

Nathan Wrigley [00:14:00]

Would you say that, obviously it was fairly difficult as you’ve described, but were you able to begin to see a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel fairly quickly? Or was it one of these learning journeys where it’s more of a cliff climb until finally you reach the pinnacle? You’ve acquired enough knowledge that suddenly it becomes, oh, I can do it all now. This is fabulous. Or were you able to get something out from your limited learning?

Lee Shadle [00:14:24]

I feel like I’m there now. I’m at that place. I mean, I’m still learning, but I feel like I’m at a point now where I can kind of shape the editor to what my vision is. But it has been a lot of hard work, but I’ve, I feel like I’ve kind of seen the vision for where WordPress wants to go for a long time. It really resonated with me and I can really get behind where they ultimately want to go. I think that all of this, it’s going to be worthwhile taking the time to really dig in and learn. And I don’t know if you’ve seen it, there’s been some talk about creating. I know there’s like Advanced Custom Fields has a block builder. There’s been some talk about creating some PHP based tools for building blocks. I’m not sure it might be a third-party. It’s just a, some conversation I saw on Twitter there quite an extensive conversation about people testing out ways to build blocks from a more PHP standpoint, where the PHP would kind of generate the React for you. And so like this layer between, okay, we have Advanced Custom Fields for doing 80% of what you want to do. And then this other PHP solution potentially being like a similar tool that gets you most of the way there. If you really want to dive deep and do some more complex stuff, take you the rest of the 20% of the way, then you’d really need to learn React and how it works in the editor.

Nathan Wrigley [00:15:46]

I feel maybe this is the point at which people who are struggling with the way things are going in WordPress at the moment. Maybe this is the point of contention, it was introduced and suddenly all of the skills and the techniques and, the years and years of expertise that they built up, it kind of felt like it was crumbling before their eyes. And they may be in a position where they’re managing to carry on their business, whatever it is, something to do with WordPress, their agency, or what have you. And simply don’t have the time to upskill and to learn new things. And maybe that’s the problem is that there’s a lot of people out there who simply don’t have the time. They don’t have the energy anymore. They don’t have the desire. And they want to just sort of keep going with the same tools that they’ve been using for a such a long time. Obviously it sounds like you, fairly driven, able to allocate enough time to do all of that and obviously fit it in around your business. But maybe there’s, maybe there’s some people for whom that is just too much of a stretch?

Lee Shadle [00:16:41]

You know, I can understand if all of a sudden Gutenberg was pulled out from under me, I think I’d throw my hands up right now. Uh, I’ve had a business, I was working on, pulled out from under me and I, it hurts. And it’s like, ah, dude, you know, do I want to do I want to keep going? But, but here’s the thing is I think Gutenberg is getting to the point where, we’re hitting a stability that could be used in production for like client sites. I think we’re hitting that point right now. Once Full Site Editing, I think after the next release. I’ve started building, I’ve kind of been doing both the old way of doing things for some clients and the new way of doing things. I’ve been doing it simultaneously to see, okay, how stable are we for using this stuff in production versus using something like Elementor page builder or Beaver Builder or something like that?

I think we’re coming up on that point where people can start making the switch and dipping their toes in. And I don’t think you have to focus a hundred percent of your time or focus a big chunk of your time to start diving into that. The new block-based themes, it uses this thing called a theme bot json file and that really sets up. You just fill out this file, like basically a data structure with what you want and you have a full flesh theme in the block editor. I think that the tools and the tooling and WordPress and Gutenberg itself are all getting to this point where we can start using it, and it’s not going to be a ton of time. And then once you start using these tools, You’re going to want to start doing more and more with them, and you can start easing your way into building blocks with ACF or from scratch or whatever.

Nathan Wrigley [00:18:33]

It seems to me that it might be the case that many people who have not really dabbled too much in the block editor have gone in there at some point, installed vanilla version of WordPress, made sure that it was all up and running and what have you, and then when in, started typing and found that experience fairly decent, certainly from my part, it’s much better for simply typing things than the classic editor ever was. Just for the ability to move paragraphs and things around. And then of course you notice this sort of curious sidebar, which is full of these blocks that you can put on to the page, and so, a paragraph is a block. A button is a block. A heading is a block. And so it kind of feels a bit like this text interface where the blocks are a bit like, okay, obviously I’m using paragraphs now. That’s fine. I can understand that. But then you sort of notice that there’s a lot of stuff attached to the block and the block brings along with it, all these different settings. And so you can modify that one paragraph in its entirety, all in one, go by clicking some buttons, you know, that might be the color or what have you. And all of a sudden, your mind starts getting taken over with, oh, so the block has got settings with it. Oh, that’s interesting. Okay. So what I’m trying to say there is if you’ve not been back into the block editor for a long time, and you’ve just really seen it as a conduit to creating content, it is much more than that. And it’s hard to express how much more it is unless you’ve actually configured or played with a block that does a lot more than you could ever have done inside the classic editor. So I’m wondering if you’ve got any nice concrete examples of things that you’ve achieved, the things that you’ve been able to do inside of a block where people might go, oh, that’s curious. I didn’t realize that blocks could even do that kind of thing.

Lee Shadle [00:20:25]

Actually, my brother is an accountant and, he does a lot of work with startups and when COVID first hit and they started doing the PVP loans and everything, I actually built a calculator for him, for his business to share with his clients. And I built it all in blocks and the calculator would, it would generate, you know, you would just put in whatever your income is and how many employees and it would generate. You can actually see it in the wild. If you go to stimulus benefits dot com, I have a calculator in there. That’s it’s a block. All this is all built in WordPress. You’ll probably notice this theme. I think this was the 2020 theme. And honestly, it’s pretty cool. It’s pretty snappy. And this is just like something that I built for fun for my brother, you know? So if you want it to build, imagine, you’re in the real estate business and you wanted to build out a full fledged mortgage calculator. I know there’s a ton of realtors, real estate agents, real estate businesses that use mortgage calculators in their business to direct their clients to. I mean, you could absolutely do that. Very quickly and easily.

Nathan Wrigley [00:21:36]

The principle there is that your brother then has a block inside of his WordPress installed, which he can then just with the click of a button throw on to any post or page, uh, it’s not a weird shortcode thing where he’s got a plugin installed over there and he’s got to go and find the right shortcode and then copy and paste it into the right part. It’s just all of that functionality. The logic behind the calculator is all contained inside of a block. And so for him as the end user, presumably it’s just really easy to deploy that.

Lee Shadle [00:22:06]

It’s a custom plugin. He could add it to any, you know, any site anywhere and what you see on the front end, of the site is what you also see in the editor. And then in the editor, you can change things like the background color, the border radius, the font color, the text. I mean, all the texts editable, which was really important because, everything was always changing. The rules of the game were changing. So he needed to be able to go in and edit the content of the calculator. So to me, it’s like, it’s super exciting that here’s this thing that, like you’re saying it would have been a short code. You throw the short code in and then say you go to the customizer. If you want to change the background color, you know, the fonts and add some custom CSS. This no, you you stay in the block editor and you just click a button. Okay. If you look at the calculator now it’s got a black background. It’d be really easy to change it to a white background with black text and then change out the font. And really you can kind of go as far as you want to go with this, I could see endless just calculators alone. I could see endless business opportunity.

Nathan Wrigley [00:23:13]

In a way, the idea of blocks, just being a conduit for putting content on the website. Yes. But it’s also in a sense it’s like a mini it’s like a mini little application it’s as you said, you created a plugin and what have you, but the complexity really has no limits. It’s only the limits of what you’re capable of coming up with and whatever it is that you’ve built with all of its amazing, difficult capabilities could just be dropped in ad infinitum all over the place. And the sky, as you say, is the limit. And I feel like we’re just turning a bit of a corner and some of the ideas are starting to come into the marketplace. Now, some really curious ideas about a whole different functionalities that are being wrapped up into blocks that we simply couldn’t have done before.

Lee Shadle [00:23:55]

I’m super excited because the fact that I could just create a calculator and drop it into a hundred sites, and then imagine I build a block base theme, say I build a block-based seam for like realtors, for example, I add this mortgage calculator, it’s baked into it. I just can see all kinds of different, you know, additional tools like you’re saying that you can get as complex as you want, but I also think blocks also offer this, a perfect canvas for constraint as well. You can go as complex as you want, but you also do want to make it easy for people to make changes to these little mini applications that we’re building.

Nathan Wrigley [00:24:35]

I think one of the concerns that I have, amongst many other people, I’m sure is. It’s just this notion of people getting a bit click happy when installing blocks. The idea that there’s a plugin for that in WordPress could easily be flipped to, well, there’s a block for that. Non-technical users going out and looking through the block repository and installing things, and then kind of having to scratch their head and say, Hmm. My site really does seem to be very slow and then ultimately blaming WordPress for that, because that’s the software it’s built upon. I think you’re right. Is it a good point to raise the one of constraint? Just because something exists, it doesn’t mean you should install 50 of them and use them all at the same time.

Lee Shadle [00:25:13]

I do think that a certain level of constraint does breed creativity. So I think that, you know, the more we can focus on making it really easy for people. Make it as easy as possible to do something, the better. So I think like patterns, the block patterns for example, are going to be a huge boon to making it easy. Try multiple homepages or contact pages about pages or pricing tables or any part of a site that you can think of. It’s going to be really easy to add that to your site.

Nathan Wrigley [00:25:44]

Have you been playing with block patterns a lot? And if so, are you pleased with where the system is right now for making all of that and surfacing them in the UI for you?

Lee Shadle [00:25:55]

I am super excited about where block patterns are going. I think they open up a ton of possibilities. If I were going to be dipping my toes right now, say I haven’t started building blocks. That’s where I would start honestly, is start building out some patterns because it’s really cool to go into the editor and create this pattern and then be able to just move it from site to site seamlessly, and have it just work.

Nathan Wrigley [00:26:23]

Do you feel there’s a new marketplace, a new job, if you like, emerging? We’ve traditionally in WordPress, we’ve had lots of people employed building websites, that’s one niche, if you like, and then had other people working within agencies, possibly building bigger websites and on the code side, if you like, we’ve had people creating plugins and themes and making commercial products out of those. Do you see blocks in that way that there’s going to be a nice commercial interest in people going out and finding affordable blocks that do the one or two simple things that they need?

Lee Shadle [00:26:59]

I do think there will be. I just, I don’t know if those are out there quite yet to find. What I’m seeing a lot of though, is these ecosystems popping up around a set of custom blocks, and then patterns to use with those blocks and core blocks and then multiple themes. And so I see the business evolving into more of these like mini ecosystems and that’s where I’ve been building is focused on here’s a set of custom blocks, custom patterns and themes for different types of use cases to get you quickly up and running.

Nathan Wrigley [00:27:39]

One of the things that I’ve noticed is I’ve seen that there are quite a few people at the moment trying to make a living out of this, and it seems, the most common way to do it at the moment is to come out with these block packs. And we’re just going to use that phrase. I don’t know if that’s what these companies go by, but they release a suite of 5, 10, 15, 20 or so on, blocks that hopefully will cover almost every aspect.

Do you get yourself involved in any of those? Do you use any of the things which are available on the market at the moment, or are you all about just if I need it, I’m going to make it myself?

Lee Shadle [00:28:09]

I definitely do. I love to see, and use what’s out there. I’ve used a bunch of different block collections on different projects, such as CoBlocks. And I don’t know if you’ve seen Stackable, WP Stackable? I know we were just talking about the GenerateBlocks and I see a lot of chatter on Twitter about people using GenerateBlocks. I don’t know if you’ve seen another one, that I just think is it’s just beautiful called Aino Blocks, A, I, N, O, WP Aino dot com. Ellen Bauer has put together. I used to buy her WordPress themes and her and her co-founder put together a set of blocks, a limited set of custom blocks and then patterns. And they’re going to be creating themes as well. Right now it’s free to start using I’m sure there’s going to be, you know, some way of them monetizing that product.

Nathan Wrigley [00:29:03]

I’m pretty sure that there’s going to be more people dipping their toes into the commercial waters as time goes on, because it does feel as if this is the future for WordPress. And one thing that I’m quite interested to see is, there’ll be like an, almost like little micro blocks that just do one thing, but do it really well and go into some sort of different pricing structure. So as an example, on the PC or the Mac, if you buy an app, it’s usually there’s a reasonable amount of dollars expended on purchasing that app. I mean, if you go onto the iOS or the Android side, something much more slim is available and it costs significantly less, just a few dollars. And I’m curious to see if this business model emerges, where we get an innovative block, which just does one small thing, but does it really well, I can’t actually conjure anything up at the moment out of my head that may fulfill that bill, but I’m really interested to see if those kinds of things start to emerge.

Lee Shadle [00:30:03]

I definitely think there will. I personally, I would love to focus just on building those, but I feel like I almost feel like it’s got a, it feels like things need to go broad first and then narrow down to the specific use cases. But I have seen one really cool niche plugin is block visibility by Nick Diego. If you, if you’re not following Nick on Twitter, you should. His plugin makes it really easy to show and hide blocks depending on different use cases, even. For example, he has an integration with WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads. And you can set visibility based on a schedule and if a customer purchased a product or not. So say you bought a product and two weeks ago, and then you can have a block pop up two weeks later and say, Hey, how’s it going? Would love your feedback if you’re enjoying using our plugin, leave us a review. So I do think that we’re starting to see those and that is, you know, one of the best examples that I’ve seen out there.

Nathan Wrigley [00:31:11]

It’s like a little application just inside of a block. There’s a lot of heavy lifting going on there. Isn’t that, you know, if it’s checking, the conditions to be right to, to make itself visible. You can imagine all sorts of permutations for the usefulness of that. Certainly in terms of marketing or perhaps hiding content that you want to be invisible to people who aren’t members of your subscriber base or whatever it might be.

And that’s kind of the point for me is that blocks bring all of this, as yet un thought-out, potential. Whereas previously, there was just essentially text on a page with a bit of formatting and some shortcodes thrown in if you wanted to add extra functionality. And now the functionality is all within the block. And so are the settings and it’s all in one simple, hopefully, user interface. Speaking of the user interface, just staying on the block editor. So we’re recording this kind of near to the middle of 2021. And I’m just conscious that there’s a lot of comparisons made all the time between what the commercial page builders can do and what the block editor can do, and I’m always curious to know what people’s opinions are about how easy it is to put things together, put complicated block layouts together and create things which are beautiful because, I certainly still experience moments where I’m really not sure if what I’m looking at in the block editor is going to look how I expect it to when I finally publish it and check it out on the front end. So just wondered if you had any thoughts about its utility as a sort of what you see is what you get, or if there’s still a ways to go?

Lee Shadle [00:32:43]

I think that ultimately that is going to come down to the themes and then any supporting block plugins that ship with those themes. With any page builder, any like major commercial page builder, there’s a learning curve and yeah, what you see, what is, what you get out of the box with Elementor, but if you want to change something, if you’re just getting started, it can feel daunting to dive into all those settings. I do think the responsibility falls more to the theme builders in and the plugin builders to make sure that that experience happens. Myself, I’m working on what I’m calling a minimalis page builder that I’m hoping to shorten that learning curve. And to also, I want to take responsibility for making sure that what you see in the editor is what you see on the front end.

So, you know, I do. It’s up to me and everyone else that is building out these experiences to make that happen. Off the shelf, if you used, you know, a core WordPress theme, you get your experience in the editor and on the front end is pretty seamless. There may be minor differences, but I mean, you’re, you’re pretty much seeing what you’re getting on the frontend.

Nathan Wrigley [00:33:59]

Just curious because you dropped a few names earlier and I thought that was quite interesting because some of the people that you’d mentioned I’d heard of, and some of them, I hadn’t. So I’m wondering if you wouldn’t mind just rattling off a couple of projects that you have seen and you thought that was good. And if you can attach some names to those as well, we’ll try and make sure they go in the show notes along with this, on the WP Tavern website. So yeah, just a list of block projects that you think are worth keeping an eye on either because they’re already fully fledged or they just seem like they’re onto the cusp of doing something great. And some names to go with that.

Lee Shadle [00:34:31]

Nick Diego, his block visibility, plugin block visibility wp dot com. And then I follow Nick on Twitter too. He’s always sharing updates. And if you’re into building blocks, valuable content there, Ellen Bauer with WP Aino A I N O dot com has some beautiful block patterns and custom blocks that you can start using right away. GenerateBlocks, of course, we mentioned Mike Oliver. He just released a new set of block patterns that, a beautiful set of block patterns that you can start using. And then I know you and I mentioned Brian Gardner’s launching Frost WP. He’s going to be launching a set, I think it’s already launched actually at frostwp dot com.

So I can’t go without saying too that Rich Tabor, he is the creator of CoBlocks and he, I think he sold that to GoDaddy. He’s always working on something interesting and sharing cutting edge stuff with regards to building blocks block-based themes and plugins. So he’d be worth taking a look at.

Nathan Wrigley [00:35:38]

That’s very nice. I will be sure to mention those. One which I’ll drop in, which I think is quite an interesting block-based, well, it is literally like a little application within WordPress. There’s something called Newsletter Glue. Don’t know if you’ve come across this, but…

Lee Shadle [00:35:52]

Lesley, how could I forget Lesley?

Nathan Wrigley [00:35:56]

Lesley Sim and her colleague, her co-founder have created a mechanism whereby you can repurpose your blog posts and they will instantly become newsletters, which sounds like the sort of thing you’ve been able to do by scraping an RSS feed or something like that. But there’s a lot more to it. For example, you can drag in a block, which will only be visible inside the post or alternatively, you could make it only visible inside the newsletter. And it does a lot more than that, but just that one simple little thing that you can do means that you can create a newsletter and have it look completely different in the newsletter than it does on your, the front end of your website. It’s really interesting for me, it demonstrates perfectly why the block editor is going to be so useful in the future, because this was unimaginable without the context of blocks. It couldn’t have been made in what we used to use in WordPress.

Lee Shadle [00:36:49]

To think about making a newsletter you generally have to, I would think go off site. And I use Newsletter Glue in a lot of my clients sites and it really makes it effortless to put together a newsletter and send it out. When you hit that send button. So like, did that really just send that this from WordPress, this is crazy!

Nathan Wrigley [00:37:07]

But just the level of complexity going on there, the fact that it’s doing a lot of heavy lifting, it’s reaching out to third-party services and doing things, but only at the moment that you click publish and it’s sending over HTML and telling the websites over there, right, go on, publish it right away to this list or that list. It’s really remarkable. And it’s, for me makes me feel that in the future, there’ll be a lot more interoperability with SaaS platforms and other things like that built inside of blocks. So that I don’t know, maybe your content management system, WordPress can reach out and have interactions with blocks with your CRM in some way, who knows?

This is what I’m finding exciting is that we’re at the point where the technology is now available, but we don’t yet have the history of developers trying out all their ideas. We did that with plugins. There must’ve been a similar moment with plugins where it was a lovely idea. Look, we can extend WordPress, but there wasn’t really so much out there yet. So plugins felt a bit like, well, it’s a thing, but you know, I’m not that bothered, but then look what happened. There really was a boom in plugins and they became… you know, you couldn’t really have a functioning WordPress website without a few plugins here and there. And I feel the same will be true in the near future with blocks.

Lee Shadle [00:38:19]

I really hope we can make building blocks easier because I think we’re just starting to see, like you’re saying some of these really neat things come out and you really could build anything you wanted in WordPress, if you know what you’re doing. So excited for what the future holds.

Nathan Wrigley [00:38:34]

Indeed, that feels like a perfect place to jump off this train. But before we do that, or before I do that, I always want to know where people can contact you. What’s the best place for you to be reached. It could be an email address or a Twitter handle, whatever you’re comfortable with..

Lee Shadle [00:38:49]

Twitter, it would be the best twitter dot com slash leeshadle. That would be the best place to reach me.

Nathan Wrigley [00:38:55]

I will make a hundred percent sure to put that into the show notes and all that remains for me to say is Lee, thank you so much for joining us today and telling us a bit about your journey and your excitement about blocks.

Lee Shadle [00:39:06]

Thank you Nathan, it’s been so fun to talk to you today. I really appreciate you having me on the show.

by Nathan Wrigley at October 06, 2021 01:23 PM under react

Post Status: WordCamp US 2021 Summary

After deciding not to hold the event in 2020, WordCamp US 2021 returned for a single day on October 1st. The entire event was planned in eight weeks — which was not widely known until mentioned by lead organizer Jen Swifter during closing remarks. This marks the first WordCamp US without Matt Mullenweg’s “State of the Word,” although due to the event being virtual it’s presumed Matt will be holding the SotW as a separate virtual “event” closer to the end of the year — similar to last year.

The two track event still brought fresh content and had what could be argued as one of the most diverse speaker lineups for a single day at WordCamp US — at least when it comes to “new to WCUS” speakers. New faces — even on screens rather than a stage — are welcome to see.

The event sold over 3000 tickets, which for a WordCamp US and a virtual event with limited marketing time is quite good. Of course not everyone might have showed up but I could easily get the feeling that this was a large event from the activity in the online chat and from Twitter.

Update: WordCamp US released an official response when asked about registered and attending members.

We had 3608 people register for the event and had as many as 400 concurrent viewers at one time.

Online events are notoriously difficult to get attendee stats for, particularly an event like WCUS 2021 where the audience is global and spans so many time zones. Many people will watch what they can and catch the rest in their own time.

We really love this as it makes for not only a more accessible event, but a more educational experience as it’s so easy to rewatch a session as many times as an individual needs.

It is difficult to give highlights of the talks since I was part of the programming team that helped add these talks to the program. I decided not to watch pre-recorded presentations prior to the day of WordCamp US to make the experience as similar to a regular attendee’s experience as possible. For that reason, I couldn’t cover all the talks live, and there are still a few talks I need to go back and watch. But I can cover some highlights and point out some notable presentations.

Note: Until WCUS talks are published on WordPress.tv, you can use this guide to view them timestamped in the live stream on YouTube thanks to Marcus Burnette.

Bet Hannon’s talk on accessibility was well received by the audience at the start of the event. Bet noted that “25% of all adults in the US have a permanent or temporary disability,” so the subject material should apply to many site builders. Jill Binder came afterwards to give an inspirational story about her journey to being a diversity team leader for a team that in 2020 exists in 71 cities across 17 countries.

Meanwhile, Cory Webb and Rich Tabor delivered what could be caled the “introduction” and “showcase” talks related to the block editor. Most talks in this particular track had some connection to the block editor or the latest major enhancements in WordPress.

There were lightning talks after a very entertaining “musical break” — or what would be considered lunch for an in-person event. I wasn’t able to fully digest them all, but many of these performers featured rarely seen or new faces in the WordPress community:

Sienna Svob covered sustainability, recommending that WordPress designers use fewer resources when possible and lean on hosts that use renewable energy. 

Lesley Sim of Newsletter Glue offered a no-slide presentation on how to make friends with early customers, and she reminded product builders to “create the expectation you’re helpful and easy to reach.” Lesley also reminded us that “anything you do for the first time [in business and marketing] is going to be awkward.” 

If you are running an ecommerce site, Lax Mariappan’s talk is a good one to watch. In a similar vein, if you are running a community or are a WordCamp / Meetup organizer I would recommend Shusei Toda‘s talk on lessons learned from WordCamp Tokyo 2021.

Another presentation for designers and theme developers would be Tammie Lister’s “Let Themes Be Themes” talk which will likely find a special place in the heart of those yearning for inspiration as we head into the next-generation of WordPress themes with full site editing and the block editor.

For entertainment, Taco Verdonschot scored some points for using his own green screen in his talk on recharging your social batteries. This was a timely talk when many of us still work almost completely remotely via Zoom and Slack.

The second half of WordCamp US seemed to go by quickly. Two key talks about WordPress.org contributions were featured in one track. The first by members of the WordPress Training team focused on the Learn.WordPress.org resource. Support for Leearn will make a big impact in the coming days — we’ll do a deeper dive into this subject in the future — and I do agree that one day visiting a WordPress.org profile might be key part of the hiring process by companies looking for WordPress professionals.

The other key talk was given by AmyJune Hineline who covered how many ways you can contribute and reviewed all the available groups at make.wordpress.org.

Developers got a treat when Helen Hou-Sandi showed how the new White House site was built in six weeks with WordPress and over a dozen custom blocks. 

“[10up] did 12 weeks work of hours in 6. Q&A; as we went. People were trusted to Q&A; their own work, no additional layers. We did have external help and always kept moving.” 

While mostly inspirational, she did show off some React code and revealed the entire talk including the live coding was done in the browser (thanks in part to Github’s Codespaces). Another treat was seeing the experiments that Kjell Reigstad showcased in his talk about block styles.

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Josepha Haden Chomphosy closed out the conference with a brief talk on “finding your own voice” with a fireside chat with Michelle Fran. Some tidbits:

  • On acquisitions in the WordPress space: Josepha overall favors them and sees acquisitions as part of a maturing market ,but it’s not all about the money: “Sometimes companies being acquired need guidance. Large companies can provide advice and funds for the smaller company to get further. Mergers and acquisitions shouldn’t be looked at something that decreases the diversity in the ecosystem.”
  • On diversity: “WordPress can be used by anybody ,so it should be able to be built by anybody.” However, Jospeha acknowledges that ventures similar to the all-womens release team (which took almost 2 years to plan) might not be happening anytime soon so it doesn’t turn into a “gimmick” and can be used more effectively to attract more diverse audiences to contribute. 
  • On individual vs. corporate contributions: “Always important to me in terms of volume, we aim for 2/3 contribution from individuals and 1/3 that are corporately sponsored,” although right now the numbers are closer to 50/50.
  • On increasing openness and transparency: For decision making in WordPress and the posts on make.wordpress.org (including her updates), Josepha said: “Even if people aren’t reading what goes into the decisions of WordPress, it’s just as important for people to go back and read that content than it is to read more traditional documentation.”

I’m biased, but I think overall the event was well done. Apart from Matt’s absence, it seemed to have a flavor of a WordCamp US throughout, complete with conversations happening on YouTube chat, Post Status Slack, and Twitter.

Get Involved in WordPress!

  • Have you thought about what you can do that might lead to speaking at a WordCamp or local meetup yourself? Abha Thankor has some suggestions for you.
  • Jobs in WordPress involve a lot of 21st century skills in digital literacy and digital citizenship. In the latest WP Briefing podcast, WordPress executive director Josepha Haden Chomphosy reflects on her WordCamp US keynote talk and discusses how participating in open source projects can help you learn these skills.
  • Get involved in Learn WordPress! Over at learn.wordpress.org there’s a lot of change going on, and you can be part of it. Learn is for everyone, so no matter where you are in your life and career, you can benefit from and contribute to these educational materials that support the community project known as WordPress.

by David Bisset at October 06, 2021 03:32 AM under WCUS

WPTavern: GiveWP Launches Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Add-On

The GiveWP team announced an extension of its flagship donation plugin for allowing peer-to-peer (P2P) fundraising in late September. The solution should make the project even more appealing than before for those looking to break from third-party donation services and go the self-hosted route. The first version rolls out individual and team fundraising pages, leaderboards, campaign sponsor support, and more.

In the past, GiveWP offered a simple solution for setting up donations on a website. People could use it for everything from nonprofit organizations to fundraising smalltown baseball team jerseys. However, any efforts to raise money fell squarely on the site owner’s shoulders.

The Peer-to-Peer add-on changes that by allowing people who support a particular cause to be both an evangelist and a fundraiser for the project.

“Peer-to-Peer is a unique form of fundraising,” said GiveWP co-founder Matt Cromwell. “To date, GiveWP has been focused primarily on the single donation form. But Peer-to-Peer is about grouping individual fundraisers into teams, each with their own form and campaign goal.”

Campaign fundraising page.

The extension allows site owners to create an overarching campaign while breaking it down into smaller individual or team-led sub-goals. For example, a campaign can have a donation goal of $100,00, but teams can reach for smaller chunks of that, such as $10,000. Ultimately, all donations are pooled together into the campaign total.

“This is a type of fundraiser that nonprofits use to raise significant funds,” said Cromwell. “These aren’t one-off simple fundraisers typically.”

The extension adds a bit of gamification to fundraising campaigns. Individuals and teams are both added to separate leaderboards, showing their rank among their peers.

Campaign leaderboards.

Individuals and teams can do more than just compete for the top rank on a campaign. They can customize their own fundraising page. It is this social element that helps bring a bit more humanity to a project.

“Examples of this type of fundraising are the Susan G Komen ‘Race for the Cure’ or the Boston Marathon,” said Cromwell. “Individuals sign up to be team captains, they recruit team members. Members have goals that lead to the team goal. All teams together go toward the total campaign goal.”

There are times when some fundraising efforts can feel a bit faceless, almost corporate-like entities asking for donations. When you start adding people from outside an organization to do some legwork, they may feel like part of something bigger.

Custom team page.

“Of course, we consulted with our customers, we held a Town Hall to get their input and feedback,” said Cromwell. “Our customers have been asking to do this type of fundraising for years. We have a lot of input on this in our feedback system. The human element is part and parcel to the success of this popular form of fundraising.”

A P2P solution was the top-voted feature request through the GiveWP feedback system. As for the future of the add-on plugin, it is easy to see what the GiveWP’s users are asking for through its own feedback channel. Currently, there is no shortage of ideas.

“We are dedicating at least two developers per development cycle over the next few cycles to continue to improve and enhance P2P based on the ongoing feedback we get from our users,” said Cromwell.

He did not give any specific details about other projects the GiveWP team is working on. However, he did note that they are excited about providing more solutions for nonprofits.

“We’d love to see our team providing more solutions outside of only the donation form side of things,” he said. “Nonprofits need stable, beautiful, and performant websites, and we think we can help on that front now too.”

by Justin Tadlock at October 06, 2021 12:42 AM under givewp

October 05, 2021

WordPress.org blog: The Month in WordPress: September 2021

There’s a lot of tolerance in open source software for shipping slightly imperfect work. And that’s good. When we ship software that’s a little bit imperfect, it makes it clear how everyone can participate, how everyone could participate, if they could find this WordPress community that supports the CMS.

That was Josepha Haden on the “A Sneak Peek at WordPress 5.9” episode of the WP Briefing Podcast, talking about what goes into a WordPress release like version 5.9. Read on to find out more about updates on the latest release and the latest WordPress news from September 2021.


WordPress Translation Day 2021 Celebrations ran for 30 days

WP Translation Day Matt Mullenweg Quote. Quote text: “Translation is so magical because it multiplies the work of all the other contributors of WordPress. If you care about freedom and the future of the internet, translating WordPress is one of the best things you can do for people who speak your language.”

WordPress Contributor teams, led by the Polyglots and Marketing teams, organized WordPress Translation Day celebrations for the entire month of September. Contributors from across the world joined the celebrations by translating WordPress into their own languages. Additionally, the team organized a host of global and local events. Translation sprints were organized by the Community and Training teams, as well as local groups.

As part of the celebrations, nominations were invited for contributors who had made a significant impact on the translation of WordPress and its availability in so many languages worldwide. More than 30 notable polyglot contributors were nominated for their contributions. They will be featured in the coming month on the WP Translation Day website, together with event recaps and more news.

Read the latest People of WordPress feature on polyglots contributor Yordan Soares, from South America.

WordPress Release updates

Want to contribute to WordPress core? Join the #core channel, follow the Core Team blog, and check out the team handbook. Don’t miss the Core Team chats on Wednesdays at 5 AM and 8 PM UTC. 

Say hi to Gutenberg Versions 11.4 and 11.5

We launched Gutenberg version 11.4 and version 11.5 this month. Version 11.4 adds image blocks to the gallery block, duotone filters for featured images, and padding support for Button Blocks. Version 11.5 adds flex layout support to the group and social icon blocks along with widget group blocks. It will support the addition of a site logo or title directly into menus.

Want to get involved in developing Gutenberg? Follow the Core Team blog, contribute to Gutenberg on GitHub, and join the #core-editor channel in the Make WordPress Slack. The What’s next in Gutenberg post gives details on the latest updates.

New Guidelines for in-person WordCamps

The Community Team published new guidelines for returning to in-person WordCamps in regions where in-person events are allowed by the local public health authorities. 

Community members can now organize in-person WordCamps for fully vaccinated, recently tested negative, or recently recovered folks (in the last three months) — provided their region passes the in-person safety checklist OR if vaccines and/or COVID testing are accessible to all. Organizers can continue to plan online WordCamps if their region does not meet the guideline. 

New guidelines are also available on the return of in-person do_action hackathons.

Want to get involved in the Community Team and help bring back in-person WordPress events? Follow the Community Team blog and join the #community-events channel in the Make WordPress Slack! Check out the following upcoming WordCamps and meetups.

Important Team announcements/updates

Feedback/Testing requests from Contributor Teams

WordPress Events updates


Further reading

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The following folks contributed to September’s Month in WordPress: @webcommsat, @chaion07, @dansoschin, @harishanker, @meher, and @tobifjellner

by Hari Shanker R at October 05, 2021 08:01 PM under Month in WordPress

WPTavern: Facebook Outage Rekindles Push for a Free and Open Web

Facebook, Workplace, Instagram, and WhatsApp went down today for roughly six hours due to a Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) configuration error. Cloudflare describes BGP as “the postal service of the Internet.” It is responsible for routing Facebook’s traffic and making all of its domains accessible to visitors.

At first glance, the outage appeared to be a malicious attack following a Facebook whistleblower’s revelations on 60 Minutes Sunday evening. BGP routing can be hijacked, but so far there is no evidence to suggest that it’s anything other than an ill-timed configuration error.

“The thing I saw at Facebook over and over again was there were conflicts of interest between what was good for the public and what was good for Facebook, and Facebook over and over again chose to optimize for its own interests, like making more money,”  former Facebook product manager Frances Haugen told 60 Minutes.

Haugen copied tens of thousands of documents of internal research before leaving, one which stated: “We have evidence from a variety of sources that hate speech, divisive political speech and misinformation on Facebook and the family of apps are affecting societies around the world.”

Haugen’s interview with 60 Minutes had already made Facebook’s lack of ethical compass a hot topic at media outlets before all of its web properties went down earlier today. This outage is one of the most severe in the company’s 17-year history, due to the cascading effects of Facebook’s infrastructure being tied into so many aspects of every day life. According to The Independent, reports of problems at internet and phone companies started rolling in, as Facebook and its related apps are often confused with the internet.

The whistleblower’s evidence of the pernicious nature of Facebook’s algorithms, combined with the widespread outage of the company’s network of services, has sparked a renewed call for people and businesses to return to the open web.

These kinds of outages disrupt those who have built their communications and commerce on top of Facebook’s products. Businesses put themselves in a vulnerable place when they rely on a walled garden to deliver audience engagement, especially when that garden’s algorithms promote divisive discourse and misinformation. Business owners should take recent events as a wakeup call and revoke all the permissions given to unaccountable platforms for short-term gains. It’s time to invest in the long-term health of your online presence by building on the open web.

As good people work to expose the inner workings of companies that have abandoned principles in pursuit of profit, I am hopeful the web will right itself and applications will become more open and adept at helping people navigate these turbulent times. For those today who are remembering what it’s like to have a breath of fresh air in Facebook’s absence, challenge yourself to start creating content on your own site. Make your website the original source of your work and distribute it out to social networks where you want to extend your reach.

by Sarah Gooding at October 05, 2021 02:45 AM under open web

October 04, 2021

WPTavern: The Next Web Publishes Storyblok-Sponsored Hit Piece on WordPress

Last week, under its news section, The Next Web published what could only be described as a hit piece: Developers hate WordPress — and so should marketers. The claim was that, despite its current 40% market share, folks should start looking at alternatives for a better experience.

The first developer interviewed for this piece was the CEO of Storyblok, Dominik Angerer. Storyblok is a headless CMS, a competitor to WordPress.

The second person interviewed for the article was Doeke Leeuwis, the founder and technical director for Story of AMS. The agency focuses on headless eCommerce. What is one of the three platforms it uses? If you guessed Storyblok, you would have gotten it right. Bonus points if you predicted it was listed first of the three in their marketing material.

The third developer interviewed was Mitchel van Bever, who also works for Story of AMS. The company has been featured multiple times on the Storyblok blog and is a featured case study.

Are you starting to see a pattern yet?

If you read through the rest of the article, you will note that the post was sponsored by Storyblok. At least they were honest about it.

Somehow I believe most readers would have skipped the article if that was posted before the content.

It is easy to find developers who dislike WordPress. But, you lose credibility when writing a piece that features interviewees who are either directly sponsoring or benefitting from the story.

The centerpiece for the entire story hinged on the 2019 and 2020 Stack Overflow annual developer survey. There is a lot to glean from the data provided by over 65,000 workers in the field. However, the article merely focused on a single point: WordPress was voted the most dreaded language or technology at 67% in the last year. Everything else centered on what those with a vested interest in Storyblok had to say.

We could talk about scalability, but with WordPress.com as a prime example of running the WordPress software at scale, do we really need to?

We could talk about flexibility, but when WordPress has more free third-party plugins (59,000+) than Storyblok has in total live websites (500+ according to BuiltWith), is it really worth diving into?

As a writer in the WordPress sphere, you may think I am entirely biased. That is at least partially true. However, I have worked with multiple systems. Laravel is one of my favorites, but its beautiful architecture does not always translate to quickly getting a job done in the same way as WordPress. I have helped friends and family launch projects on several non-WordPress services. It all depends on what the best tool for the job is.

I have even created my own custom CMS for my personal blog. I felt like WordPress was overkill for what I needed. It is OK to use another tool even when you typically prefer working with something else. My custom blogging system was built just for me, but it now runs on two websites. I had another developer friend crazy enough to try it.

My love for WordPress is not absolute. It is not unconditional.

But I still love it. There are 1,000s of others who love working with it too, and these developers are more likely to tell you what the actual issues with the platform are. We can criticize it honestly because we are down in the trenches, working with the platform every day. We know it is not always the ideal programming experience. We know it has some legacy baggage. Despite its warts, we have built something that most others only dream of doing. We have created a vast community.

If you thought it was all about who had the shiniest code, you would be wrong.

It is about business competitors willing to communicate and even help others in their space.

It is about Five for the Future, a program where WordPress-related companies contribute to free software.

It is about support forum volunteers lending a helping hand.

It is about the 100s of folks on the Make WordPress teams who contribute to various aspects of the project, everything from code reviews to translations.

It is about sharing a drink with a years-long friend you just met IRL for the first time at a WordCamp, albeit mostly virtual for the last couple of years.

It is about the podcasts that people produce for the love of the platform and its surrounding projects.

It is about quitting your nine-to-five to launch a new business as a plugin developer.

It is about taking part in a movement that has allowed millions to publish on the web.

No, not every developer who participates in the annual Stack Overflow survey loves WordPress. Most of them may dread working with the platform, and that trend may very well continue. What we have is bigger. WordPress is its community.

This smells like just another hit piece from a WordPress competitor like we have seen before. At least some of the Wix videos were funny (come on, you know you laughed at at least one or two of them), and folks got free headphones from the deal. This Storyblok-sponsored post just leaves a sour taste.

Like my grandma — probably everyone’s grandma — used to say, “You catch more flies with honey.” This was an opportunity to sell potential users on Storyblok’s features. Maybe bashing competitors brings traffic, but I doubt it brings any goodwill or long-lasting benefits.

by Justin Tadlock at October 04, 2021 10:32 PM under WordPress

WordPress.org blog: WP Briefing: Episode 17: WordPressing Your Way to Digital Literacy

In episode 17 of the WordPress Briefing, Josepha Haden Chomphosy reflects on her WordCamp US keynote and digs into how participating in open source projects can help you learn 21st Century Skills. 

Have a question you’d like answered? You can submit them to wpbriefing@wordpress.org, either written or as a voice recording.

Credits

References

WordPress 5.9 Planning

5.9 Target Features

WordCamp US 2021

Transcript

Hello, everyone, and welcome to the WordPress Briefing, the podcast where you can catch quick explanations of the ideas behind the WordPress open source project, some insight into the community that supports it, and get a small list of big things coming up in the next two weeks. I’m your host, Josepha Haden Chomphosy. See, here we go!

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  00:42

Today I want to talk to you a little bit about the digital divide, where it is, maybe a bit of where it’s headed, and which parts of the WordPress open source project and CMS can help. This is a focused look, though, so I won’t touch on some of the hurdles that everyone is aware of when you get outside of in-person environments, things like parental modeling or supervision, education on the relevance of technology, etc. This is a follow-up to the conversation that I had at WordCamp US last week—and so doing a little bit of a deeper dive here. And we’re gonna start with what exactly is the digital divide. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  01:23

So the digital divide is considered those who benefit from the digital age versus those who don’t; that feels like a really big concept. And the current discussion is primarily about access, or for years that has been about access anyway, especially physical access. So those who have computers versus those who do not have internet in their homes versus those who do not. But I don’t necessarily agree with that particular, really focused definition of the problem. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  01:59

If the only problem we see is access, then the solution becomes to get cheap devices and internet to everyone, which certainly has led to more people being connected than ever before.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  02:12

With this proliferation of devices that are considered both smart and mobile (mobile in this context, meaning handheld or pocket-sized), the discussion over the last few years has been shifting. It’s been shifting into more of a discussion around the education around the relevance of internet access, discussions around the quality of access to the Internet, and also discussions around Wi-Fi and dial-up and the surprising cost of data.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  02:42

But from my perspective, there are a number of really dangerous assumptions that we make when we boil it all the way down to who has access and the quality of that kind of access. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  02:54

The first dangerous assumption is that we run the risk of conflating being tech-savvy with being digitally literate, and they’re not really the same things. The second assumption that we run the risk of is assuming that access to cellular data equals access to the internet through any other means. And also assuming that cost is always the determining factor.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  03:19

And the final fairly dangerous assumption that we’re making there is that we allow ourselves the ability to mark the digital divide is fixed in our minds. Once we get enough access to everyone, we’re just done. There is no more divide. But as a way of illustration, if you think about access, not in the context of technology, like high technology, digital technology, and in the context of like writing, you probably own a writing utensil, and you probably have access to paper of some sort, which is great. But just because you have like a pencil and a piece of paper doesn’t mean that I can send you home right now – I guess most of you are listening at home.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  04:07

It doesn’t mean that I can send you to your desk right now. And consider you prepared to write a best-selling novel, right? Because giving you physical tools no more makes you a novelist than handing me a computer when I was a teen made me digitally literate. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  04:24

So let’s talk about what it takes to be digitally literate. I’ve lumped the following skills into three groups. It’s broadly defined as 21st-century skills, but the groups that I have them in is not a comprehensive list of those 21st-century skills. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  04:41

The first group that is a large component of digital literacy is critical thinking skills. So computational thinking and problem-solving. That particular one is not new, exactly. But the computational thinking part certainly is. Not all problems are solved with code, but the basis for thinking through things procedurally is increasingly important. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  05:04

The second one in that set is communication through multiple media, consuming communications or content through Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, or any other format, but also creating the things that communicate—writing blogs, creating videos, both calls and standalone, and forums, things like that. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  05:27

The third set in that group of critical thinking skills is around collaboration, which some people will say is more about communication. But I find that collaboration both online and in-person is a skill set all to its own. Communication only gets you so far when you’re learning to cook to collaborate with people that you don’t normally work with. And so, I have lumped that into critical thinking skills. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  05:54

The second big bucket for digital literacy is actually literally digital literacy. So I have three, three things in here as well. Evaluating information is obviously incredibly important in the environment that we’re in right now, for just information’s sake. But then things like understanding the differences between copyright versus copyleft licenses, understanding the difference between an .org ending URL and a .com ending URL, and evaluating the general veracity of sources that you’re finding on the web.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  06:32

The second part of that group is media use and creation, understanding the difference between folks who consume and folks who create the content we have, how to find information online, and the most sensible places to keep information online. And the third area of digital literacy that I find to be vitally important is the ethics of licenses both around use and access. So again, things like copyright vs. Copy, copyleft. And specifically for WordPress, that means understanding things like the Creative Commons licenses, GPL, MIT, but then also copyright is its own complicated question unto itself. But the other things that show up for us for WordPress that show up for us with technology are also things like open access versus proprietary information and sources. And things like plagiarism versus sampling.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  07:33

And our third big bucket, which has become increasingly complex, but the third big bucket for digital literacy to my mind is actually considered something that I call life skills. So things like self-direction, knowing what you want to do next, and how to get it done. Time management is also in there, knowing how much time something will take and being able to make sure that you are getting things done over time, as opposed to trying to accomplish everything at the last second. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  08:03

A big part of these life skills is cross-cultural and social communication. The internet is tricky, right? Because it’s simultaneously incredibly insular and increasingly global. Like you can if you wanted only ever read things that already confirm your existing biases. But the very nature of the internet, the very nature of the web, means that the world is much smaller. We have more ready access faster to everyone everywhere in the world than we used to have. This means, of course, that cultural awareness is an absolute must now more than ever. This is for what it’s worth the time of year when I give this talk. And that’s because of this last part of the life skills section, which is digital citizenship. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  08:54

Digital citizenship generally is the second week of October 2 or the third week of October. And it’s one of my favorite weeks because it is something that comes up all the time in our ecosystem. It comes up all the time and open source in general, but certainly for WordPress. So those are our three big buckets of digital literacy, a subset of 21st-century skills as a whole.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  09:22

That’s a lot of stuff, I know. And it’s also really hard to figure out how you can learn any of those skills, and from my experience, I really believe that WordPress as an open source project can help people learn those things.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  09:43

Once upon a time, ages and ages ago, my mother told me that in order for me to become a better writer, I would have to read and in order to become a better communicator, it would probably help if I spent a little bit more time writing, and I have always felt that the same must be true for all the things that we learn, you find a positive example and study it to become better. Or, depending on what you’re learning and how you’re trying to learn it, you find a passive example of something that you want to be able to do better from an active standpoint and participate in that so that your active production of the other part is better.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  10:24

Here are a few parts of the WordPress project and WordPress itself that can help with this.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  10:31

So there are first a few really specific teams; if you’re contributing to a team like Themes, or Plugins, or Core, the three areas of those digital literacy skills that you have an opportunity to learn there. For critical thinking, you’re going to run into problem-solving and computational thinking. You’re also going to run into distributed collaboration, which was really important as just a concept when I first wrote this talk. And now it is currently really important as a reality because we have a bunch of companies that are going to either remote work or partially distributed or fully distributed. And that’s the way that WordPress has worked for a pretty long time.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  11:19

So I’ve always felt like it was important because it was important to WordPress, but it’s also becoming increasingly an important part of just how to exist in the world at the moment. For those three teams, the things that you can really tap into and practice for the life skill section are digital literacy, nope, digital citizenship, self-direction, and time management obviously comes up in any open source project because you are volunteering your time and it is up to you to kind of decide how much you can commit or not various other parts of time management and directing one’s own project. Now, but you also get the opportunity to test and practice your cross-cultural communication, social communication and learning what it means to collaborate across cultures in that way.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  12:15

On the digital literacy side, you also get a little bit of that information evaluation and synthesis for what it’s worth. And then obviously get to learn more about the ethics of various types of licenses and how use and access relate to those things.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  12:35

We also have a team or two; these are not really teams or twos. These are things that you can do that are either solo activities or group activities. One is working or checking out the support forums, and the other is blogging. We’ll start with support forums. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  12:52

If you’re doing this as a group activity, there are a couple of extra things that that you can practice here. But suppose you’re doing it as a solo, just way to give back to the project sort of thing or way to learn some of these skills sort of thing. In that case, you can get almost all of these digital literacy skills woven into working in the support forums, depending on what’s happening in the moment and the questions people have brought up. But for critical thinking, obviously, you get some problem solving in there, not as much the computational thinking as the procedural thinking part. But you certainly also get to tap into communication with multiple types of media, collaboration in person and online, depending on whether you’re doing this as a solo effort or a group effort. And then, of course, research, which I didn’t really bring up in any of those groupings for digital literacy, is certainly a very important part of it.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  13:49

For the digital literacy grouping of skills related to digital literacy, you get to work on evaluating information and, depending on how complicated an answer might be. You can also get that opportunity to practice synthesizing complex information and research, a digital literacy skill. And then, once people have responded to a topic you’ve answered, you also get to tap into that life skill section. You get to be you get the opportunity to practice digital citizenship related to synchronous or asynchronous conversation. You also get to see more about how cross-cultural communication and collaboration works and social communication across those various boundaries that naturally show up when we’re working across cultures that way. And as I mentioned previously, information synthesis, as well.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  14:53

The second one that I have mentioned can be like a solo effort or a group effort, depending on what you do. Blogging, for most people who use WordPress, is probably the most common application of how WordPress can help you do stuff. So I often see it as the most relevant and the most immediately accessible to anyone. But you know, you got to meet people where they are. So, I would strongly believe that this is our best way to help people learn these things. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  15:30

So blogging for the critical thinking sorts of things, you have an opportunity to practice communication across mediums. You will probably get an opportunity to practice your research skills, chances are, you’re going to get the opportunity to practice some problem solving, and honestly, like if you’re hosting your site, problem-solving is going to come up when using WordPress as soon as you add in plugins and themes, because you sometimes kind of have to figure out what’s working and what’s not, and what’s playing nicely with other things and what’s not. It’s possible that with blogging, you’re also going to have an opportunity to get to practice some distributed collaboration. But that’s probably going to depend on what you’re doing with your site as well.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  16:30

Licenses and how they apply to the thing that you’re using feel a bit different when you are the one who’s creating. And so learning about how those things work and don’t work and how they can best suit what you’re trying to do. Blogging is absolutely an excellent opportunity to dig into that a bit and learn a bit more about that. As far as your life skills go,

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  16:56

that’s where you, again, get to practice some digital citizenship by figuring out who your audiences are and also when you have to communicate with them via the comments or any other way that you have built up a feedback mechanism there. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  17:11

Self-direction obviously will come into this, maybe time management if you are blogging on, I was gonna say on a paid basis, but that’s not really I don’t know, on a project basis, like some of us are students and have to write things based on deadlines. And so, you know, self-direction, potentially time management, always cross-cultural communication, social communication, research, all of these things show up in there.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  17:41

And, you know, I really believe in this concept of how blogging and bringing people into maintaining a website can teach you all of these skills. Because when I was younger, I was a bad communicator. And now, I am across the board known for my effective communication and my ability to work across cultures. And so the defining moment, which was like a four-year moment, and so not necessarily a moment, but the thing that really made all the difference was when my mom challenged me to write every single day. She had noted that I was not necessarily great at getting from one point to the next. I wasn’t necessarily great at building my arguments when I had to explain something to people. And she suggested that writing every day would help me tap into this big thing about communication and working with other people collaboration, all of that. And as an adult on the other side of it. Like, I thought she was super wrong when I was younger, because don’t we all think our parents are wrong when we’re younger. But as an adult on the other side of it, not only was that an opportunity for me to literally learn how to communicate better. But it also, when I look at it, gave me access to opportunities to practice all sorts of 21st-century skills and digital literacy skills in an environment that was relatively safe. And so, I am a big proponent of this particular one.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  19:26

Another team that helps us tap into and practice a lot of our digital literacy skills is the Documentation team. I recommend that you let this be a supervised activity if you’re doing this with students because, you know, it’s a wiki. You can put weird things in there on accident or just inaccurate things. So for critical thinking, the primary skill that you’re going to be able to practice if you’re working on documentation is collaboration. You would think that it was also like information synthesis and information evaluation. But for a lot of the work that we’re doing, the documentation exists. And what we’re looking at is trying to figure out where it no longer matches what is currently in the CMS, or currently in the project or currently in the team, whatever it is that you’re working on at that moment. And so, it’s a strong collaborative effort in the WordPress project. You have to have done the general work to figure out what needs to be changed in the documentation. But a lot of times, you need to figure out who has access to make the changes, what has prevented us from making changes in the past, and things like that. And so I say, collaboration is the only one to learn and critical thinking, but it’s actually a really big one and can take a fair amount of effort in this particular context.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  20:49

From the digital literacy aspect, of course, there is evaluating information. But this particular type of information evaluation is a little different for documentation. And this actually is true for the Documentation team, for the Training team, and also for the new Learn team. This question is true for all of them. There is a huge difference between presentation versus application of information. The way you present information for people who already know it and just need confirmation of something or are using it for reference material is really different from when people are looking at a piece of documentation that should be telling them how to accomplish something. And they try to apply it either to their own processes at the moment or apply it to teaching other people. And so evaluating information to make sure that what is presented can be applied, and all of the ways that that very complicated journey with managing information can kind of work or not, depending on how things are going in your section of the open source project at the moment.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  21:59

The third group of skills that you can really dig into in those teams, again, is digital citizenship, basically, everything is digital citizenship in WordPress because we’re just people online.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  22:24

And this final grouping that we have this final team and group of skills. So the Community team is a substantial and far-ranging team; they have many things that fall into their area of expertise. And so this has traditionally kind of functioned as a linchpin around education and ensuring that that was all relevant for users and attendees of events. The Community team will remain pivotal to so many things that we do now. But now that we have really awakened the Learn team and re-enlivened that Training team, this will shift a little over time. But yes, so that grain of salt that depending on when you listen to this, if you listen to it in 2050, maybe it’s not accurate anymore. Hopefully, most of what I say is not accurate in 2050. But you know, still.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  23:27

 Anyway! Critical thinking that’s where we were. So the critical thinking group of skills inside the Community team, you are going to have an opportunity to practice problem-solving. And frequently also procedural thinking, depending on what you’re working on in that team. Multimedia communication is absolutely true. And that’s true, whether you contribute to the team itself and make sure that the team is functioning and doing their basic tasks. Or if you are organizing an entire event, whether it’s online or offline or however that is being accomplished. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  24:07

Multimedia communication for this particular team is constant for all of their work and something that everyone who works on there gets to practice all the time. For digital literacy, this comes up a lot if what you’re doing is working through any sort of like programming plans, making sure that what we have in place for events is really excellent. It’s a really excellent opportunity for practicing the evaluation of information, learning more about media use and creation, and then naturally, everything to do with licenses copyright copyleft, not only for everything that we produce but then also for everyone in the ecosystem. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  24:55

This team helps so many plugins, authors and theme developers, and other groups who participate in the ecosystem understand the nuances of the GPL and why it matters so much to WordPress. And then in the life skill section, there’s the obvious life skill section, life skills that have come up for all of them—so digital citizenship, cross-cultural and social communication. But also you have the opportunity to tap into that self-direction and time management practice, which probably should also be considered in all of these teams. But, you know, things change as we go. 

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  25:45

Those are the most likely digital literacy skills that you would end up practicing in the Community team, depending on how you are participating in the Community team at that moment.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  25:59

So I said that we would talk a little bit about where this is all headed and what to do next. And like I just said, when I got lost in my own reverie, they’re like, hopefully, everything that I’ve shared here is out of date by 2050. Like, if we can come back to this particular podcast, or this presentation, or anything I’ve ever said, about digital literacy over my time with WordPress. And if we could come back to that in 2050, or, you know, I was going to say, 20 years from now, 2041 feels really close. But, you know, come back to it in the future, and say, that was all really excellent information to know at the moment. And we did do those things. And now, WordPress has proven that open source contribution and collaboration can teach all of the necessary 21st-century skills that anyone would need to survive in the world. And we did do it, that would be really cool. But I don’t think that that’s where we’re headed. Not because I don’t think people believe in what I’m saying or care about what I’m saying. But because it’s very easy to kind of let these things go at some point.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  27:20

Even if you at some point, were proficient in all of what is considered 21st-century skills, sometimes our skills don’t get used very much. And so we lose track of them. And we don’t know, or we don’t know how to teach them to other people and various ways to do that. So I hope that when we revisit this in the time capsule of the internet 20 years from now, we can say that was a great explanation. And we learned so much. And we made so many changes in such progress that now we need a new version of this. That’s really all we can do, always striving to leave the world in a better position than when we found it.

Josepha Haden Chomphosy  28:07

All right, that brings us to our small list of big things. I don’t have a ton to share with you today. But what I do have to share with you is a really big deal. So we are about a week away from the Go/No-Go point of WordPress 5.9. That is the final release of the year. And as soon as we know what is a go or a no go from that meeting on October 12th,  everyone is going just to hit the ground running. And so, if you are interested in contributing to that release, either by being a participant in the release squad or leading some part of the release squad. Absolutely. Drop by and let me know because I am interested to know who wants to learn more about doing that. And this is actually something that has gone by. I mentioned at the top that I spoke at WordCamp US.  That is still true; I did do it. And so did a bunch of other really excellent presenters. If you missed WordCamp US on Friday, for whatever reason, because you know, life is complicated. Pretty soon, we will have the videos. We’ll have all the videos up with captions quickly and have those available for everyone to watch and learn more from as their schedule allows and as their attention allows. And that is your small list of big things. Thank you for tuning in today for the WordPress Briefing. I’m your host, Josepha Haden Chomphos, and I’ll see you again in a couple of weeks.

by Chloe Bringmann at October 04, 2021 12:00 PM

October 02, 2021

Gutenberg Times: A Block Pattern Party in more ways than one – Weekend Edition 187

Howdy!

Did you get to watch the fantastic presentations about the block-editor at WordCamp US? No? I am sure they will be posted on WordPress TV in no time. I’ll keep and eye out. The best presentations from my perspective?

  • Helen Hou-Sandi talked about the adventure building WhiteHouse.gov site within 6 weeks. Her look behind the scenes and the thoughts behind the front page header block build, was a great case study, why to use blocks and not ACF. (Recording on YouTube)
  • Kjell Reigstad showed some wonderful creative examples how you could use Block Styles for some funky and new way to display blocks. Most with no JavaScript, all in CSS. (Recording on YouTube)
  • Rich Tabor did a phenomenal job diving into the seven realms of Full-Site Editing and Theme building, with an exponentially spruced up slide deck and a very soothing voice. We were all more relaxed about the huge changes to come. (Recording on YouTube)

That was only one day, yesterday, but more things happened in Gutenberg land. What have you been working on? I want to know. Hit reply and tell me:-)

We have some great posts and videos for you. Did I miss one or two? Let me know that too.

I’m excited to see you next week at our Live Q & A on theme building.

If you are not a theme builder, maybe you are interested in our upcoming Live Q & A on block building with members of the BuddyPress team.

Be well, 💕

Birgit

PS: Huge Thank you to Rob Cairns for a conversation among friends about my start at Automattic, the beginning of the Gutenberg Times and catch-up on Full Site Editing. Listen to Episode #154 of The SDM Show by Stunning Digital Marketing.

PPS: Monday, 10/4 at 9am EDT / 2pm UK Time, I’ll join Nathan Wrigley, Michelle Frechette and Rob Cairns on the WPBuildsThis Week in WordPress Show. It will be live streamed on YouTube.

PPS: Don’t miss the fantastic Page Builder Summit! Oct 18 – 22, 2021 – Schedule below.


Gutenberg Development and Team updates

Gutenberg 11.6 was released. Now you can lock certain blocks, edit the site logo image file within the Site Logo block (yay!) and child themes have now basic support for full-site editing and Global Styles. Nik Tsekouras has the details for you in his release post: What’s new in Gutenberg 11.6 (29 September).

 “Keeping up with Gutenberg – Index 2021” 
A chronological list of the WordPress Make Blog posts from various teams involved in Gutenberg development: Design, Theme Review Team, Core Editor, Core JS, Core CSS, Test and Meta team from Jan. 2021 on. Updated by yours truly.

Kelly Hoffman posted about the upcoming improvements to the Gallery block. The silent video loops through many variations of how you can now configure the images in the gallery block. The total revamped Gallery Block is built from individual image blocks, that bring their features into the gallery: you can style each image differently, link each single image to a different URL, apply different duotone filters per image and crop images to fit into a pattern and more.

You can enable this Gallery block from the Gutenberg plugin’s Experiments page. If you want to see what happens when your existing gallery change into the new Gallery Block, you click on “Update” button of the the Block’s Toolbar (new in 11.6).

The refactored Gallery block is slated to come to WordPress with the 5.9 release. If you are a plugin or theme developer, Glen Davies published a Dev Note last month.


Maggie Cabrera publish the 67th Gutenberg + Themes Round-up post from the Themes team with a list of ongoing discussions on Full-Site Editing, Global Styles, and Design Tools. Just as examples:

There are quite a few more aspects listed, and they all could use your thoughts and ideas. It’s the place to be part of the discussion and influence development and designs.


Shaun Andrews posted the recording and summary of the Design team’s Show & Tell meeting. The meeting is mostly meant to catch up all design contributors on various stages of their work.

In this meeting

  • Tammie Lister talked about Block Support and how it is handled for individual blocks, in theme.json and block.json
  • Javier Arce shared his designs for editing background in an image block images, and
  • Channing Ritter discussed her exploration around Theme switching in the Site Editor.

Full Site Editing and Themes

There are now many conversations about Full-Site Editing and how can site builders, agencies, designers and freelancers get a handle on the various pieces, that make up Full-Site Editing. Anne McCarthy published a longer post on Sharing Approaches for Adoption of Full-Site Editing in the WordPress ecosystem. She suggested a gradual adoption with increasing levels of complexity and maturity”. Quite an interesting read.


Andres Noren published and introduction to his new block-based Theme “Tove” in which he lets you look behind the scenes. I found remarkable the comparison of this new theme with his latest classic theme:

“Tove contains a theme.json file that specifies supported settings and styles, HTML template files and template parts used by the Site Editor, a couple of stylesheets, placeholder image assets, a folder with block patterns, and a functions.php file to enqueue assets and register block patterns and styles. That’s Tove. Not a single line of JavaScript, and other than the functions.php file and a empty index.php file, no PHP either.

Compare that to Eksell, my latest (and probably last?) free classic theme. Eksell has 1 700 lines of PHP in its functions.php and template-tags.php files, five PHP classes in five files, and over 1 000 lines of JavaScript (not counting the CSS variables ponyfill). “

You will get an opportunity to connect with Anders Noren on Thursday together with Ellen Bauer and Carolina Nymark when we discuss going from classic themes to Block-based Themes on our Live Q & A. Get your seat now!


WPBlockPatterns.com is a site where you can compare, how the Patterns available in the WordPress.org directory perform with each Full Site Editing theme. On the first page of the site, you see the list of the block patterns from the directory. Once you click on the name of the pattern a new window opens, and you can then select the theme from a drop-down box on the top right.

Andrew Starr, owner of UX Themes and author of the Hansen theme, created the site and Justin Tadlock connected with him for more details: Preview WordPress Block Pattern and Theme Combinations via New Site.


Tammie Lister started a new project: A Block Pattern a Day. On her new site, Patternspiration, she will publish a new pattern every day to explore all the possibilities with Block Patterns, and to get an idea on what tooling would be needed around it. Definitely a place to watch.


Anne McCarthy published the 10th call for testing out of the Full-site editing outreach program and calls you to join the Pattern Party, too! You are invited to test all the Theme Blocks, some already in WordPress 5.8 and some to come in WordPress 5.9 and create patterns with them. “This test is focused on pushing these lovely Theme Blocks to their limits to better determine what to prioritize and what features might remain to be documented. “ McCarthy wrote.


Developing for the new wave of WordPress experience On Tuesday, Oct 5 at 01:30 PM CST, join Post Status CEO, Cory Miller, as he interviews Rich Tabor, Head of Product at Extendify, about the future of publishing with WordPress. Definitely a show worth watching!


WordPress Meetup London met this week, and during their 2nd hour they held a Roundtable on Full-Site Editing hosted by Dan Maby guest Paul Lacey, Diane Wallace and Anne McCarthy.

Need a plugin .zip from Gutenberg’s main (trunk) branch?
Gutenberg Times provides daily build for testing and review.
Have you been using it? Hit reply and let me know.

GitHub all releases

Using Gutenberg as Content Creator

Istiak Rayhan shared with you the 10 Interesting Gutenberg Features You May Not Know About. Rayhan pointed out most of my favorite features of the Block editor. He is also one of the authors of the Ultimate Blocks plugins, so it’s not a surprise to see it listed.

Instead of the Document information page, I would pick the List View next to it as the more useful tool for your workflow. You can identify blocks from their nested view and drag and drop them at a different spot of your post.

Rayhan followed up with a Beginner’s Guide for Gutenberg. I bookmarked his post to share it with others looking to get started with the block-editor.


Page Builder Summit

Page Builder Summit is coming back and will be happening October 18 – 22, 2021. Nathan Wrigley and Anchen Le Roux just published the schedule

Here is the list of Gutenberg / Block-editor presentations

  • Forging the Future with Full Site Editing with Anne McCarthy (10/18 – 9am EDT)
  • The Future of Building WordPress Websites with Brian Gardner (10/18 – 12pm EDT)
  • What does Full Site Editing Mean for Page Builders? with Joe Casabona (10/19/ 9am EDT)
  • Customizing WordPress Block Editor for Client Projects with Birgit Pauli-Haack (10/19/ – 10 am EDT)
  • Mastering modern WordPress with Full-site Editing & Custom Blocks with Rob Stinson (10/20/ – 5am EDT)
  • How to Build Any Page Layout Using Kadence Blocks with Jake Pfohl (10/20/ – 12pm EDT)
  • Building a Custom Blog Archive with Blocks with Mike Oliver (10/21/ 11am EDT)
  • RIP Page Builders with Chris Lubkert (10/19 – 1pm EDT)

The schedule is not out yet. Sign-up for the waitlist to receive notifications.


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Featured image: “Fire wood” by rossbelmont is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

by Birgit Pauli-Haack at October 02, 2021 03:40 PM under Weekend Edition

October 01, 2021

WPTavern: Logtivity: A WordPress Activity Log Service With Customizable Charts, Alerts, and CSV Exports

Launched by Ralph Morris and Steve Burge in June this year, Logtivity is a plugin and service that allows site owners to track everything that happens on their WordPress installs. The duo has made continual updates to the plugin since. In the past couple of months, they have added deep integration with Easy Digital Downloads. They are also planning to build around more eCommerce-related plugins.

Burge mentioned that using the Logtivity service allows site owners to track and log activity at scale. While small sites could get by with an on-site solution, it can be harder to do while growing. “This offers a strong alternative to using a plugin because you don’t need to store huge amounts of data on your own server,” he said.

The service provides graphs so that end-users can visualize their data, but they can also dive directly into the logs and look at specific actions. Users can also set up unlimited alert notifications through email or Slack and download reports as CSV files.

Site dashboard showing different chart types.

The Logitivity WordPress plugin is free to download and install, but it merely serves as a bridge to the commercial service. The pricing page has three tiers that start at $9.50/month and run to $49.50. The rates primarily differ on the number of logs generated, user access, and length of data retention. However, each tier can be used on an unlimited number of sites.

I have been running the service on WP Tavern for a couple of weeks. There are not many things I would want to track specific to this site other than posts published and commenting numbers. The short-term data has not told me much that I did not know already. However, I could see how these logs could come in handy over months or years. If we were running an eCommerce website, the information could be invaluable.

Viewing a specific set of logs based on an action.

Users can create reports of specific logs and display them as either bar or line charts. These can be generated based on an action, such as “Post Published” or “Comment Created.” Users can also add a specific context, such as a post ID. For example, a user could display a chart for each product file download through the plugin’s deep integration with Easy Digital Downloads.

This is the type of thing that the team has in mind at the moment. The primary use case since launch has been logging eCommerce activity.

“People who run eCommerce sites need to track registrations, subscription changes, file downloads, license key activations, login activity, and more,” said Burge. “eCommerce site owners need this for customer support and also to deal with refund requests and chargebacks.”

Currently, each of the service’s features is handled via the Logtivity site. The team has plans to bring them into the WordPress admin interface. However, it could be late 2021 or early 2022 before the integration happens.

“We’d love to bring Logtivity data directly into WordPress,” said Burge. “And because there’s no need to worry about Logtivity slowing down your site, we have some interesting ideas for how and where user activity can be displayed in the WordPress admin area.”

How It Started and Where It Is Going

Burge serves as the marketing brains behind the project. His primary WordPress-related business is PublishPress, but his customers had asked for a project like Logitivity for several years.

“Ralph Morris started Logtivity for a customer at the web dev agency he works at,” said Burge. “The customer’s site has around 100,000 users and gets a great deal of activity every day, from new registrations and subscriptions to resources being downloaded and cancellations. They were using a WordPress plugin to track customer activity, but as the number of logs grew, this process took longer and longer and became more clunky to perform. The final straw was when they were unable to perform the CSV exports, as it would keep timing out. Ralph scratched the itch and built a little MVP. After a few weeks, he showed it to his colleagues and got permission from his boss to offer it to the client to be the first user, and a little while later, the first paying customer.”

He said the two connected thanks to Iain Poulson, who recently co-launched the acquisitions marketplace FlipWP.

“Ralph lives really close to where I grew up in Hampshire, England,” said Burge. “We got our heads together and decided on a partnership: Ralph as the developer and myself as the marketer.”

Outside of integrating more directly with the WordPress admin, the Logtivity team has a roadmap that will keep them busy for a while. Topping that list are more integrations with third-party plugins.

“Our primary use-case is eCommerce sites, so WooCommerce is central to our plans,” said Burge. “But we also plan deeper integrations with more plugins that WordPress eCommerce sites use, including LearnDash, MemberPress, Paid Memberships Pro, and more.”

Several players in the space are moving toward broad integrations across the ecosystem. Chris Lema talked about it being a vital strategy for business growth with StellarWP’s recent acquisition of LearnDash.

Burge also noted that his team plans to continue improving the service’s alert system. “In future versions of Logtivity, you’ll be able to send more flexible alerts to more channels. We also plan to provide SMS alerts for your most important notifications.”

by Justin Tadlock at October 01, 2021 09:49 PM under Plugins

Akismet: Version 4.2.1 of the Akismet WordPress Plugin is Now Available

Version 4.2.1 of the Akismet plugin for WordPress is now available.

This update contains a fix for a bug in version 4.2 that could cause AMP validation errors on some sites, depending on the template they were using.

To upgrade, visit the Updates page of your WordPress dashboard and follow the instructions. If you need to download the plugin zip file directly, links to all versions are available in the WordPress plugins directory.

by Christopher Finke at October 01, 2021 06:31 PM under Releases

WPTavern: Gutenberg 11.6 Introduces New API for Locking Blocks

Gutenberg 11.6 was released this week with a new API for managing lock control at the block-type level. When defining a block, developers can now use the lock attribute to designate whether a block can be moved or removed. The PR introduces parts of the locking support mechanisms proposed by Matias Ventura in a separate issue earlier this year.

Ventura explained that while the editor already has template locking support to prevent inserting or moving blocks (i.e. for custom post type templates), it doesn’t yet offer much granular control or a UI for the different locking states. He identified block themes as an important use case for establishing a new block-level API for representing lock status. Block themes may necessitate the ability to lock down key elements, such as preventing the removal of the post-content for a single post template. If you have ever played around with the template editor then you have likely discovered how easy it is to remove important elements by accident.

“Another use case that we’re building for is having a Checkout Block with different blocks that act as fundamental steps,” WooCommerce and Gutenberg engineer Seghir Nadir said. “We don’t want people to delete or move those steps since they’re fundamental and their order is also important, but we want to allow people to select them, access settings, and insert blocks in between them.”

During this week’s core editor chat, Paal Joachim Romdahl highlighted the need for a locking mechanism for Reusable blocks.

“At the moment it is too easy to make an accidental change to a Reusable block,” Romdahl said. “I worry that only having the hover overlay and the initial click [to] select the parent Reusable block is just not good enough, that we soon should get a lock mechanism in place. There is a lot of feedback from users who have accidentally deleted the inner contents of the blocks and wondered what happened.”

Romdahl has created several issues about to the possibility of adding a locking mechanism to the inline toolbar for reusable blocks, where users would need to unlock to edit the contents.

Now that the foundational infrastructure is in place for managing lock control at the block-type level, contributors can begin building a UI to control it, as outlined in the Locking and TemplateLocking issue. Ventura said future iterations should include a UI that indicates which blocks are user-editable and also display block status in the list view and block inspector.

by Sarah Gooding at October 01, 2021 05:00 AM under reusable blocks

WPTavern: Gutenberg 11.6 Improves the Global Styles UI, Adds Child Theme Support

Gutenberg 11.6 landed yesterday. Contributors added dozens of enhancements and bug fixes. Admittedly, there was not a whole lot that excited me as a user about this release.

Typography options for the Post Title block. Nice.

Cropping for the Site Logo. A necessary addition.

Toolbar button for converting old Gallery blocks to the new — still experimental — format. Sweet.

For the most part, the release felt like a slew of routine enhancements that have been in the pipeline for those of us closely following the plugin’s development. Almost boring. And that is not a bad thing at all. Less excitement and smaller doses of iterative improvements can be healthy for the project and its developers. We do not always need to feel like we are chasing the next big thing. This is a well-rounded release that polishes many areas, from navigation to widgets to general block enhancements.

There were two features that I am happy to see movement on. That is the site editor’s Global Styles system and child theme support.

Global Styles Updates

Default site editor look with Global Styles panel open.

Global Styles is the system that will truly connect end-users to theme developers and vice versa for the first time in WordPress history. We have made some attempts at this, such as the customizer. However, this feature will handle it on top of the standardized block system.

Essentially, themes will talk to WordPress through their theme.json files, and users will speak the same language through the Global Styles panel.

For example, imagine a theme author sets up the default text color as black and the background as white. This will appear on the front end of the site but also be reflected in the site editor. The Global Styles interface allows users to change those two colors to something they prefer. They can also see of a preview of their color and typography styles in the box at the top of the panel.

Updating colors, preview shown in editor and at top of panel.

And, it does not stop at a couple of simple colors. Users can modify all sorts of design aspects like typography and spacing at the root and block levels.

Gutenberg 11.6 adds a navigation component to the Global Styles sidebar. Overall, it feels much smoother working through the top and sub-levels while editing my theme’s styles.

Updating the global padding for the Code block.

This is sort of a small but vital step toward overhauling the overall Global Styles interface. There is still much work to be done, but I am eager to see where the Gutenberg contributors take this component in the coming weeks and months.

I did run into one snag. Clicking on the Typography tab at the root level produces an error. However, it works at the block level.

Contributors also updated the old “Aa” icon representing the Global Styles panel with a half-dark-half-light circle button. My immediate reaction was that it was for switching between light and dark modes.

This was a sentiment shared by a user (from a now-deleted account) in the GitHub ticket.

Global Styles is not a new system disconnected from styles and themes, indeed is an improvement to the current themes system. If we were to consider the strength of WordPress’ past and present, we would perceive that on the dashboard, indeed a brush icon has been developed for years in people’s memory as an association with appearance, themes, styles, personalization. Therefore, the icon that would be most comprehensible in people’s memory regarding the new Customizer remains a brush. I say new and better Customizer, because this is how common people manifest what they understand about Global Styles. Departing from a pencil brush to yin-yang, moon, or water drop, I have not tested yet with public, but from past experience I assure you people are going to find this new icon unrelated and confusing.

Block Child Theme Support

As one of the pioneers of child theming in WordPress, using them long before they were officially supported, this is something near and dear to my heart. I created my first theme shop on this foundation. I have loads of ideas about how the block paradigm can reshape the theme space, and child themes are at the center of many of them.

However, all of the components of Full Site Editing have not entirely supported child themes until now. There are still a few pieces left to fit into the puzzle, but the system should work, mostly.

Templates, template parts, and theme.json files from a child theme should now completely overrule those from the parent. These changes work on both the front end and in the site editor.

Some open questions are being worked through in a related GitHub ticket. The most crucial development is still to come, which will handle merging values between the parent and child theme.json files. For example, it makes sense that child themes should be able to overwrite colors and typography while skipping definitions for layout-related values, falling back to the parent.

Once that is in place, designers will have an easy-yet-powerful way to realize the original vision behind CSS Zen Garden, a project that at least partially inspired child theming’s adoption by WordPress.

by Justin Tadlock at October 01, 2021 01:45 AM under gutenberg

September 30, 2021

Akismet: Version 4.2 of the Akismet WordPress Plugin is Now Available

Version 4.2 of the Akismet plugin for WordPress is now available. It contains the following changes:

  • Improved compatibility with the most popular contact form plugins, which should lead to improved accuracy.
  • Added links to additional information on API usage notifications.
  • Reduced the number of network requests required on a comment page when running Akismet.

To upgrade, visit the Updates page of your WordPress dashboard and follow the instructions. If you need to download the plugin zip file directly, links to all versions are available in the WordPress plugins directory.

by Christopher Finke at September 30, 2021 06:55 PM under Releases

Gutenberg Times: Releases Galore in WordPress open-source projects, Business Case of Gutenberg and more — Weekend Edition #179

Howdy, friend!

Today’s weekend edition is a double-feature, so to speak. I’ll skip next week because of traveling overseas. First trip in 20 months. I am so excited and also busy to get ready. I will be back into your inbox on August 7th, 2021.

This week was an exciting week for the WordPress open-source project and its many hundreds of contributors. One release after another! Just wow! Let’s dive right in.

Stay well and keep safe!

Yours, 💕
Birgit


WordPress open-source project Releases in July 2021

WordPress 5.8

Five hundred thirty awesome contributors worked on WordPress 5.8 and the release team let it loose on Tuesday as Tatum, after Art Tatum, a renown American jazz pianist.

Need to catch up on all the features in this new version?

BuddyPress 9.0

In time for the block-based widget editor, the BuddyPress team released their block widgets in their 9.0 version this week. The new BP Widget Blocks are Legacy Widgets, rebuilt as BP Blocks. You can also access them in the Block Editor for use in your posts or pages!

WordPress Pattern Directory

The Meta Team has been collaborating with the Design team and designers in the community on the first version of the WordPress Pattern Directory. They released it officially on Tuesday night. Justin Tadlock has the skinny.

I found a few to add to my favorites. What are your favorite block patterns? These initial 80+ patterns are also a great inspiration for theme builders who look to include themes styled patterns in their themes.

If you are interested in creating block patterns from scratch, browse through this list of resources around block patterns.

Gutenberg Plugin Version 11.1

The Gutenberg Team released another version of the Gutenberg plugin, version 11.1.

Grzegorz Ziolkowski and I discussed its many of the changes on 48th episode of the Gutenberg Changelog

Justin Tadlock wrote: Gutenberg 11.1 Adds Drag-and-Drop Support for List View and Upgrades Block Borders

 “Keeping up with Gutenberg – Index 2021” 
A chronological list of the WordPress Make Blog posts from various teams involved in Gutenberg development: Design, Theme Review Team, Core Editor, Core JS, Core CSS, Test and Meta team from Jan. 2021 on. Updated by yours truly. The index 2020 is here


Theme building for Full-Site Editing

Tammie Lister shares here theme design journey on the site Ephemeral Themes. This week, she posted “Tips for creating a theme in the site editor” and explained the importance of testing early and often. Well worth your time!

Need a plugin .zip from Gutenberg’s main (trunk) branch?
Gutenberg Times provides daily build for testing and review.
Have you been using it? Hit reply and let me know.

GitHub all releases


Kjell Reigstad has the weekly round-up of issues, updates and discussions around Gutenberg and Themes for you. In this post Reigstad covered the most recent PR on FSE Blocks, General theme building and Global Styles. The list of overview issues is a great start if you need to catch up on the overall concepts and ideas.


Carolina Nymark, team rep on the Theme Review Team, ask for your comments on the newly proposed Theme requirements for inclusion into the Theme directory on WordPress.org. You can also read them in more details on GitHub issue #12 on the Theme Requirements repository of the Theme Review team.

Deadline for the first round of comments is July 26th, 2021.

On July 28th, 2pm CET. The team will conduct a Zoom interview with theme authors about the requirements. Spots are already full. Hopefully, the interviews will be recorded to educate more than a few theme developers about the requirements.

Justin Tadlock provides background and more context as to the initiative via his post Next Phase of the WordPress Theme Review Overhaul.


Rich Tabor published The Ultimate Guide to WordPress Block Templates in Gutenberg and provides a comprehensive tutorial on how block-based theme template fit into WordPress template hierarchy and how they help WordPress users controls their site. Tabor also provided details instructions on how to build block-based templates and leverage them in your theme.


In his post Universal Themes: Customization on ThemeShaper, Ben Dwyer explored about how to make Global Styles and the Customizer work together. Dwyer looks at how to use classic WordPress tools (in this case the Customizer) to customize a block theme, while saving these changes in Global Styles – making a universal theme!


Developing Blocks and Plugins for the block editor

Last month, Dmitry Mayorov, Senior Front-End Engineer at 10up, published a crash-course in WordPress Block Filters. Mayorov shows you how to extend core blocks with filters. He also helps you with the decision between extending a core or build a custom block instead.


Michael LaRoy wrote a tutorial on creating blocks with Advanced Custom Fields. He wrote: “By providing a PHP solution to block creation, a developer already familiar with ACF can efficiently create new custom blocks without writing any JavaScript.”


Bill Erickson has a tutorial on how to use Inner Blocks with ACF Blocks, to expand on the usefulness of the plugin for more complex layouts.


Alex Standiford explained in his post “How Gutenberg Blocks Work the basic concepts of how the block-editor stores content, why HTML comments and how is it rendered.

Business Case for Gutenberg

Artur Grabowski, co-founder of Extendify, a Gutenberg first product start-up, was Joe Howard‘s guest on episode 153 of WPMRR Podcast: Going Big by Solving WordPress’ Biggest Roadblock. Grabowski, like many other business development people in the WordPress space, regards the missing new user onboarding experience as the biggest roadblock for even bigger growth of the WordPress ecosystem. Howard and Grabowski had an honest and nuanced conversation about the business case for Gutenberg First approach to WordPress products.

Grabowski took a historic view to the ongoing debate about Gutenberg being the right path for WordPress. Back in 2016, while working with Adobe and its product Spark, Grabowski became aware of many innovative web building tools. They were all block-based. It is only a fairly new concept for WordPress. “There is a lot less unknown here about the end state than some people realize.” If you are interested in the WordPress product space, I recommend you follow the link and dive into the details of things.

The future is here. It’s just not evenly distributed.

Artur Grabowski

Incidentally, Cory Miller, Post Status partner and Jeff Meziere talked to Chris Lubkert, also co-founder of Extendify, on their Webinar for the Business Value Academy. Webinar: Mergers & Acquisitions with Chris Lubkert

Before co-founding Extendify, Chris Lubkert and Artur Grabowski worked in the Merger & Aquisitions department of Automattic. Tammie Lister also joined Extendify as their head of design. Extendify is the new home for a series of block-editor plugins and tools: Editor Plus, Redux Framework, Editors Kit, Gutenberg Hub, Gutenberg Forms, ACF Blocks, and Block Slider to name a few.

Episode #48 is now available with transcript.
Next recording August 6th, 2021

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by Birgit Pauli-Haack at September 30, 2021 06:15 PM under Weekend Edition

Gutenberg Times: List of WordPress Themes for Full-Site Editing and Resources

A few people ask about WordPress Themes that are already working with the Full-Site Editing system and the new Site Editor. Here is a List as of July 2021.

The Themes are all built while Full-Site Editing is under active development and many features are experimental. Do not use in production or live site. Expect the themes to be wonky at times, until developers have a chance to update the themes for new Gutenberg plugin version. In short: There will be Dragons! 🐉

Oh, yes. You also need to install the Gutenberg plugin.

For the lastest updates pre-release, use the Gutenberg Nightly

Themes for Full-Site Editing in the WordPress repository

I only used TT1 Blocks Theme for FSE-Testing. I rely mostly on Justin Tadlock or others to provide more insights on the various themes. The articles are linked with the theme header.

Armando by Carolyn Newmark

Armando WordPress Theme Provides Insight Into the Current State of Full Site Editing

Block Base by Automattic

Using Blockbase for a theme experiment (ThemeShaper) by Kjell Reigstad

The Automattic Theme Team Announces Blockbase, Its New Block Parent Theme (WordPress Tavern) by Justin Tadlock

Blockbase: A parent theme for block themes (ThemeShaper) by Ben Dwyer

Child themes of Block Base

Mayland Blocks by Automattic

Seedlet Blocks by Automattic

Automattic Launches Mayland Blocks, Its Second FSE Theme on WordPress.org

Block-Based Bosco by Fränk Klein

What I Learned Building a Full-Site Editing Theme

Implementing Global Styles in Block-Based Bosco

Block-Based Bosco, Second Full-Site Editing Theme Lands in the WordPress Directory

Clove by Anariel Design

Clove: A Showcase of Block Patterns by Anariel Design (WPTavern)

Hansen by Uxl Themes

Build a Full WordPress Site via Block Patterns With the Hansen Theme

Naledi by Anariel Design

Anariel Design Launches Naledi, a Block-Based WordPress Theme (WordPress Tavern)

by Ari Stathopoulos

Exploring Full-Site Editing With the Q WordPress Theme

Rick by WPEntire

TT1 Blocks by WordPress contributors

This is the FSE sibling of the Twenty-Twenty-One Theme

If you find any theme missing in this list, let me know.

WordPress Themes team resources

The themes team share their experiments on GitHub. Some listed themes made it as stand-alone theme into the repository listed above.

Contributors also included a script to generate a theme with the minimum necessary to build your own block theme: php new-empty-theme.php.

Every other week, the themes team meets discussion Block-based themes: 2nd and 4th Tuesday at 15:00 UTC (11am EDT) wp-slack channel #themereview

Every week, the Themes team published a roundup post about newly merged changes, and what is discussed on the GitHub repo for Gutenberg. The post also has a few overview issues so you can always catch up on what is in the works. Follow the #gutenberg-themes-roundup tag on the make-blog/themes

Anne McCarthy, developer relations and program manage for the FSE outreach published a post on ThemeShaper with more Resources for block theme development

DevNotes for WordPress 5.8

Developer Documentation

Courses and Tutorials


Updated 7/21 to add Rich Tabor’s article on Block Templates

by Birgit Pauli-Haack at September 30, 2021 06:15 PM under Themes

Gutenberg Times: Theme creation, Block plugin development and the Future of WordPress – Weekend Edition #178

Howdy, my friends!

WordPress 5.8 will be release next week. Are you ready? Well, if you didn’t get any chance to test things, you should still be alright. If you know your customers will be fiddling with their site’s widget section, do yourself a favor and install the Classic Widget plugin, so there are no surprises.

For last-minute testing, use the Release Candidate number 4. The final release is scheduled for Tuesday, July 20, 2021. The Field Guide covers all changes.

Wishing you all the best for the upgrade! Holler if you need any help!

Yours, 💕
Birgit

Gutenberg and the Future of WordPress

In this week’s Jukebox episode, host Nathan Wrigley discussed with Robert Jacobi the Future of WordPress in the era of Gutenberg. Jacobi explained why he is persuing a Gutenberg first approach. You can listen on WordPress Tavern or your favorite podcast app.

From the section “Neither Gutenberg nor WordPress News”: I am excited about the acquisition of Pocket Casts by Automattic. I tested many other podcast apps, but Pocket Casts has been my favorite for many, many years.

Nathan da Silva, founder of Silva Web Designs, wrote about the Future of Page Builders and concludes, there are still pieces missing before Gutenberg makes 3rd Party page builders obsolete. Da Silva mentions, Full-Site Editing is not there yet and there are not as many add-on available as Elementor or Beaver Builder provide for their site builders workflow.

Episode #47 is now available with transcript.
Next recording July 23, 2021

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Block-editor for Content Creators

On July 29th, 10 a.m. PT / 1 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. UTC. WordPress VIP will hold a webinar with the title Gutenberg Full-Site Editing: Unlocking Agility for Enterprise WordPress. James Proctor will share lessons from the cutting edge of implementation. “By taking Gutenberg blocks beyond the post editor, these new features allow content creators unprecedented agility and control over the entire site experience. “ Any site owner and agency will be able to take advantage of the knowledge shared at scale.


Deborah Edwards-Onoro posted a great tutorial on how to Manage your Block Editor preferences and increase productivity and comfort.


WordPress 5.8 brings Duotone Filters to images of the block editor. Justin Tadlock takes you on a tour of this fabulous new feature: Duotone Filters: WordPress 5.8 Puts a Powerful Image-Editing Tool Into Users’ Hands‘.


Developing Plugins for the Block Editor

After the Primer last week, Rich Tabor posted How to Build & Publish Gutenberg Block Plugins to the WordPress Block Directory. Tabor guides you through the process from create block scaffolding and running the block plugin checker to uploading your block to WordPress repository and get it approved for the Block Directory.


Marcus Kazmierczak wrote a series of posts on how to Conditionally Load Block Assets when building block plugins. There are quite a few different ways to skin that proverbial cat. Start at the latest post, explaining the new WordPress 5.8 way to handle this. Kazmierczak also provides a video walk through.

This helped me to understand the feature Ari Stathopoulos worked on and described in his Dev Note: Block-styles loading enhancements in WordPress 5.8


Riad Benguella has a few more Miscellaneous block editor API additions in WordPress 5.8 – it covers:

  • Contextual patterns for easier creation and block transformations
  • Pattern Registration API
  • BlockControls group prop

 “Keeping up with Gutenberg – Index 2021” 
A chronological list of the WordPress Make Blog posts from various teams involved in Gutenberg development: Design, Theme Review Team, Core Editor, Core JS, Core CSS, Test and Meta team from Jan. 2021 on. Updated by yours truly. The index 2020 is here

Gutenberg and Themes

Jason Crist published this week’s Gutenberg + Themes roundup. Two issues caught my eye:

There is of course, much more going on. Another great round-up post from the Theme Team!


Anne McCarthy shared Resources for block theme development on ThemeShaper. She wrote: “Whether you’re just starting out or already deep in the block theme world, the following resources should help you be aware of what’s to come and how to get involved in shaping the future.”


Tammie Lister published here process on how to create a theme and what she encountered. She wrote: “I am still like many discovering how I create themes using site editing, but I wanted to share my current process and some observations I’ve made along the way. “


Nick Diego collected three small fixes to his theme to change the breakpoint for the column block to become responsive, how to change the order of the mobile columns and how to disable responsive columns completely. For the latter, Diego uses a solution by Andy Serong, that is already merged to Gutenberg and will be released with the plugin version 11.2 on July 21st, 2021. Details in Disable Responsive Columns in Gutenberg and Other Tips


Rob Stinson posted about WordPress 5.8 Widgets Changes and How they Impact the Genesis Framework. He wrote: “To help navigate this for the 100,000’s of sites that run on the Genesis Framework we have implemented an opt-in experience in version 3.3.4 for whenever anyone updates to WordPress 5.8.”

Need a plugin .zip from Gutenberg’s main (trunk) branch?
Gutenberg Times provides daily build for testing and review.
Have you been using it? Hit reply and let me know.

GitHub all releases


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by Birgit Pauli-Haack at September 30, 2021 06:15 PM under Weekend Edition

Gutenberg Times: Block Building, Query Loop block and more – Weekend Edition #177

Howdy,

For a few days, we enjoyed non-humid weather in Florida as Hurricane Elsa sucked all the moisture out of the air and took it with it. Sorry, Northern friends.

For some fun summer reading, I can highly recommend the WordPress 5.8 DevNotes, all handily assembled into a massive Field Guide by Milana Cap.

After the publishing rush around the WordPress 5.8 release last week, this week is certainly a lot calmer. Although I know that behind the scenes, contributors are working hard on getting Block Editor End-User documentation ready, too. 🐝

Hopefully, you have been busy testing plugins and themes for compatibility with the new widget block-editor. July 20th is only 10 days away. WordPress 5.8 RC 2 is out and could use your eagle eyes to spot last-minute bugs and quirks.

What else has happened in the WordPress Gutenberg space last week? I have a few more links for you. As always, you don’t have to consume them all in one sitting, you can always come back during the week.

Wishing you a wonderful weekend and start into your next week!

Yours, 💕
Birgit

Gutenberg Development

Gutenberg 11.0 was released and Dave Smith compiled the release notes for the team. This time in the release cycle of the next WordPress release, it’s all about bug fixing. Justin Tadlock highlights a few enhancements in his post. Grzegorz Ziolkowski and I recorded the 47th episode of the Gutenberg Changelog on Friday. Listen in and get a few more ideas of what’s in this Gutenberg 11.0 release. the audio should be available over the weekend.


Matias Ventura updated scope for site editing projects to help the team and the community to track upcoming tasks around the main site editing projects. There are a few separate tracking issues for covering some general improvements and then some broader projects. It covers some general UI features that need to be iterated on, mentioned a Browse mode for the site editor, and lists Infrastructure, Patterns, Styling and the Navigation Block.

Gutenberg and Themes

Carolina Nymark summarized all the Theme features that will come to a WordPress instance near you with WordPress 5.8. It’s the Cliff Notes with actionable code snippets for opt-in and opt-out decisions.


Daisy Olson posted a summary and the recording of this week’s Hallway Hangout Discussion the Theme.json.

The Theme.json Call for testing is still open until July 14, 2021. It has instructions for beginners, Intermediate and advanced WordPress theme developers. It’s a fabulous way to learn and share your feedback.


Maggie Cabrera created an outstanding weekly round-up (#56) post with theme related recently merged PRs, what is discussed and again a great list of overview git hub issues that are waiting for your comments and ideas!


A couple of weeks ago, we had Daisy Olsen, Tammie Lister and Jeff Ong on a Live Q & A. First we have a short introduction demo on how to work with theme.json and a discussion on how this new way to organize the settings and styles for your theme change how themes work in WordPress. We also answered interesting questions from the audience. If you haven’t seen it yet, you can watch it here with transcript and resources.

 “Keeping up with Gutenberg – Index 2021” 
A chronological list of the WordPress Make Blog posts from various teams involved in Gutenberg development: Design, Theme Review Team, Core Editor, Core JS, Core CSS, Test and Meta team from Jan. 2021 on. Updated by yours truly. The index 2020 is here

Block Editor for Content creators

This is a first in the almost three-year history of the Block editor! 🙌 🎉
Thanks to the indefatigable Anne McCarthy, content creators can review End-user documentation for the new features before they are released.

Now it’s all still a work in progress and there is still time until July 20th.


Anne McCarthy‘s Block-based Widget Editor Demo is now available on WordPress TV. Check it out to seen what’s coming to WordPress 5.8.
Yep, as Grzegorz Ziolkowski said yesterday, Anne McCarthy is everywhere!

Query Loop Block

Even if you are not familiar with the developer term Query Loop, once you look at the examples you’ll instantly realize that this is about the layout of a list of posts you might want to include on your pages, templates or posts. You can change the layout for post title, featured image, excerpt and link. An early version of this was the Latest Post Block.

The design team also implemented a series of Block Patterns of a few nice variations to display a post list on templates, post and pages. It’s a fun feature, and it has taken quite a long time to build. The wait was definitely worth it.

It is mighty and could be the most powerful feature in 5.8 as Justin Tadlock headlined his post Query Loop: The Ins and Outs.

Allison Rivers over the Torque Magazine also published an article What is the Query Loop Block? with lots of great insights and examples. Rivers also has a list of plugins that implemented some advanced features the WordPress version is still missing with its first iteration.

Block Building and Plugins

Reading throught the release notes for Gutenberg 11, I found great gem posted by Riad Benguella. It’s a flow graphic that explains the relationship between the packages that make the post editor.

Partial view of Riad Benguella’s schema

I find this very helpful to keep in mind when to use which package at which stage or the user interactions.


Rich Tabor, Senior Product Manager, WordPress Experience GoDaddy published A Primer on Gutenberg Block Plugins for the WordPress Block Directory in which he walks you through the process of submit your plugin to the WordPress Directory, as he went through when submitting his Markdown Comment block to the repository.


In the same space, Ella van Durpe published a plugin for private note-taking in WordPress called Hypernotes. Justin Tadlock reviewed it for the WordPress Tavern. Van Durpe explain her comment to the article’s, that the plugin uses some experimental PWA capabilities she introduced to the Gutenberg plugin for WP-Admin.


Alex Standiford, developer at Sandhills Development (makers of the EDD plugin) published a tutorial about API Fetch – The WordPress Library You Didn’t Know You Needed with code snippets and plenty of theory to with them, too.

Standiford also started the WPAcademy with the course WordPress Plugin Development Course, with 37 videos teaching you how to make a beer custom post type, customize the Gutenberg editor, create a new block, and create WP-CLI commands to make testing fast and easy.


Justin Tadlock shared his experience in Taking the Leap: Building My First WordPress Block Plugin. He built a breadcrumbs block as a dynamic block that’s rendered server side.

Need a plugin .zip from Gutenberg’s main (trunk) branch?
Gutenberg Times provides daily build for testing and review.
Have you been using it? Hit reply and let me know.

GitHub all releases

Upcoming WordPress Events

July 17 + 18th, 2021
WordCamp Santa Clarita

  • 1pm PT / 4pm ET / 20 UTC – FSE: What’s Coming to 5.8 & the Story of the Outreach Program w/ Anne McCarthy
  • 2pm PT / 5pm ET / 21 UTC – How Theme Developers Should Approach Full Site Editing w/ Joe Casabona
  • 3pm PT / 6pm ET / 22 UTC – Rapid Landing Page Creation With the WordPress Block Editor w/ Daisy Olsen

July 23, 2021
WordFest Live The festival of WordPress

  • July 22 – 10 PM EDT / 2 UTC – Learn to Build Blocks with Advanced Custom Fields w/ Cameron Jones
  • July 23 – 3:20 pm EDT / 19:20 UTC How to Create a Fast Loading Stylish Homepage with Blocks & CSS w/ Davinder Singh Kainth

August 6 + 7, 2021
WordCamp Nicaragua

September 21 + 22, 2021
WPCampus 2021 Online
“A free online conference for web accessibility and WordPress in higher education.”


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by Birgit Pauli-Haack at September 30, 2021 06:15 PM under Weekend Edition

Gutenberg Times: Block-Based Widget Screen and DevNotes Galore for WordPress 5.8 – Weekend Edition #176

Howdy,

July is the month celebrating North American Independence (for white people) and the start of the French Revolution.

Happy 154th Birthday, Canada 🇨🇦 (July 1st).
Happy 245th Birthday, USA 🇺🇸 (July 4th)
Happy 232nd Bastille Day, France 🇫🇷 (July 14th)

There are many more countries celebrating Independence Day in July, though. Here is the list. Take a look! 🌐

July 20th, WordPress 5.8 will be released and there are a ton of block editor related dev notes for themes and plugin developers. Use this week’s RC 1 version to test your sites, plugins and themes!

Be well! Have a great weekend, wherever you are located!

Yours, 💕
Birgit


WordPress 5.8 Dev Notes for Block editor features

This week was also the deadline to published Developer Notes around the upcoming WordPress 5.8 release.

Block-styles loading enhancements by Ari Stathopoulos – Ari has the details on how the two new features – Load styles only for rendered blocks and Inline small styles – work and how theme developers and block builders can tap into it.

Blocks in an iframed (template) editor by Ella van Durpe – The new Template editor is the first block editor loaded in an iframe and isolate it from the rest of the admin screen. Ella has the benefits for you as well as the details on how to adjust your blocks if you rely on document or window and provides code fixes for your ReactJS blocks. There is more. Definitely worth a read if you are deep in plugin development. Ella’s post compliments Grzegorz Ziolkowski’s post: Block Editor API Changes to Support Multiple Admin Screens

On layout and content width by Riad Benguella – This is a shorter post, introducing the Settings for layout and content width and how you can adjust your theme to take advantage of them.

Block-based Widgets Editor by Robert Anderson. He wrote: “WordPress 5.8 introduces a new block-based widgets editor to the Widgets screen (Appearance → Widgets) and Customizer (Appearance → Customize → Widgets).” and continues to explain the three methods (including the Classic Widget plugin) of opting out. You might find interesting to learn how the Legacy Widget block helps with the backward compatibility for existing widgets and widget areas.

Various Block Editor API removals by Riad Benguella has the details on the removal of EditorGlobalKeyboardShortcuts, hasUploadPermissions and their alternatives. Also, the block “Subheading” has been removed, too.

Timothy Jacobs post lists all the REST API Changes necessary for the Widget Block Editor. He also shows how to adjust Legacy widgets, so they are seen and handled by it. Timothy illustrates the changes with extensive code snippets, that should help you get up to speed fast.

And if that isn’t enough already, Milana Cap lists Miscellaneous developer focused changes in her dev note. The team removed support for IE 11 from build and test tools and gives you more control and consistency for the document title. WordPress 5.8 also brings a consistent type for integer properties of WP_Post, WP_Term, WP_User and a bookmark object and better caching of post/page IDs for subsequent request. There are quite a few more goodies in this upcoming release. Take a look!

 “Keeping up with Gutenberg – Index 2021” 
A chronological list of the WordPress Make Blog posts from various teams involved in Gutenberg development: Design, Theme Review Team, Core Editor, Core JS, Core CSS, Test and Meta team from Jan. 2021 on. Updated by yours truly. The index 2020 is here

User-facing changes in WordPress 5.8

Timothy Jacobs gave a detailed preview of What’s coming to the Block editor in WordPress 5.8 to the members of the WordPress NYC meetup. You can see a demo of Duotone for image & cover, Single Column color and spacing settings, Table block updates, and reusable block changes. He spent a few more minutes on the new Widget Screen as well as the Post Template Editor and the new Query Block.

Courtney Robertson wrote in What WordPress 5.8 means for your clients’ websites “This release expands the role of the block editor to include nearly every area of WordPress. You’ll want to check out all the updates to discover what WordPress 5.8, Full Site Editing, and Block-Based Themes mean for your clients’ websites.”. The post is a fabulous comprehensive list of what is new in WordPress 5.8 with short videos and the relevant details.

Block-Based Widget in WP Admin and Customizer

You can also watch Anne McCarthy Exploring the Block Widgets Editor in WP Admin and Customizer on YouTube. She wrote in the description: “This video seeks to give an initial look at this feature and answer some top questions people might have. Shout out to Channing Ritter who put together the demo portion!”.

Eric Karkovack also did a deep dive into the block-based Widget Screen for you: The WordPress Widgets Screen Joins the Gutenberg Era and provides you with a great tutorial on how to use the new screens with screenshot and all.

Diving Into WordPress 5.8’s New Widgets Screen by Justin Tadlock. He is a fan of the new feature and glad it made it into the WordPress core for this upcoming release. While the WPAdmin Widget screen feels like a good block editor, he wrote about the block widgets in the Customizer: “Customizer support for block widgets is light years ahead of where it was just a few short months ago. However, it feels awkward at best. There is a deep feeling of not belonging. While it was a remarkable programming feat to make the two features work together, the user experiences are nearly a decade apart.”

Need a plugin .zip from Gutenberg’s main (trunk) branch?
Gutenberg Times provides daily build for testing and review.
Have you been using it? Hit reply and let me know.

GitHub all releases

Plugins for the Block Editor

This week, I found quite a few people sharing their experiences with block editor plugins.

Chris Lema compared in his post Content Visibility for Gutenberg three plugins that allow you to control the visibility of single blocks on your page or posts. We mentioned two of them here multiple times. Chris tested the pro version for his purposes:

Episode #46 is now available with transcript.
Next recording July 9th, 2021

Send questions, comments or news to changelog@gutenbergtimes.com

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Rich Tabor released Markdown Comment Block in the WordPress plugin repository. He wrote in his description: “Having the ability to add, and keep, any relevant editing comments within my posts, without rendering them on the front-end, means that I am freed up to mentally jot any idea down without thinking about it. It is simply natural and convenient.” Justin Tadlock gave it a review in Add Editor-Only Notes via the Markdown Comment Block WordPress Plugin


Thanks to Remkus De Vries’ new newsletter “Remkus Ramblings“, I learned about two more plugins for the block editor:

Highlight and Share by Ronald Huereca – “It’s a social sharing plugin that allows you to highlight text and and share among several social networks including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and more,” Remkus said. I wished I had this plugin when I ran a social media marketing agency….

The second one is Block Editor Colors by MotoPress – Remkus wrote: “(…)which allows you to edit default Gutenberg block editor colors or the ones registered in a theme, as well as add your colors!”

Remkus de Vries, Head of Partner & Customer Relationship at ServeBolt, started his newsletter last month, and he uses – you probably guessed it – my favorite newsletter plugin: Newsletter Glue. 👋 Waving at Lesley Sim


I got quite excited when I learned about Automattic’s Sketch plugin, a plugin that allows its users to sketch within the editor and show it immediately on the front end. Based on perfect-hand library, it is the product of a collaboration between Matias Ventura, Pablo Honey and Oscar Lopez. It’s one of Automattic’s Block Experiments.


Building Blocks

Ben Gillbanks shows you how to get a list of all blocks in the editor of a post or page. He wrote: “It’s particularly handy for WordPress plugin developers, but will also be useful when setting properties in theme.json a new feature that is part of the upcoming Full Site Editing functionality of WordPress.”

Fabian Kägy‘s WordCamp Europe presentation Building great experiences in the new editor is now available on WordPress TV. He wrote in his session description “Starting out building blocks or experiences for the WordPress block editor can be a bit daunting. Where do I start? Custom blocks, block patterns or just styling core blocks. In this talk, I will walk through the different options and share the benefits and downsides of each while talking about overall good practices for building great editorial experiences.”

If you are looking for other talks, you might have missed, 23 WordCamp Europe 2021 talks are now available on WordPress TV

Upcoming WordPress Event

July 7th, 2021 -1pm EDT / 17:00 UTC
Hallway Hangout: FSE Testing call #8 theme.json with Daisy Olson

July 17 + 18th, 2021
WordCamp Santa Clarita

  • 1pm PT / 4pm ET / 20 UTC – FSE: What’s Coming to 5.8 & the Story of the Outreach Program w/ Anne McCarthy
  • 2pm PT / 5pm ET / 21 UTC – How Theme Developers Should Approach Full Site Editing w/ Joe Casabona
  • 3pm PT / 6pm ET / 22 UTC – Rapid Landing Page Creation With the WordPress Block Editor w/ Daisy Olsen

July 23, 2021
WordFest Live The festival of WordPress

  • July 22 – 10 PM EDT / 2 UTC – Learn to Build Blocks with Advanced Custom Fields w/ Cameron Jones
  • July 23 – 3:20 pm EDT / 19:20 UTC How to Create a Fast Loading Stylish Homepage with Blocks & CSS w/ Davinder Singh Kainth

August 6 + 7, 2021
WordCamp Nicaragua

September 21 + 22, 2021
WPCampus 2021 Online
“A free online conference for web accessibility and WordPress in higher education.”


On the Calendar for WordPress Online Events you can browse a list of the upcoming WordPress Meetups, around the world, including WooCommerce, Elementor, Divi Builder and Beaver Builder meetups.


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by Birgit Pauli-Haack at September 30, 2021 06:15 PM under Weekend Edition

Gutenberg Times: Theme.json Resources, Block Patterns and WordPress 5.8 – Weekend Edition #175

Howdy,

We enjoy cooling off at the community pool after our lunch walks. It’s the simple things, right?

I learned so much in this week’s Live Q & A! You might too. Jeff prepared a insightful demo of the basics. Thank you to all those watching and asking great questions! It was a pleasure and honor to have Daisy Olson, Tammie Lister and Jeff Ong on the show. The recording is available here. So are the links to the shared resources and the transcript.

What else happened this week in WordPress? Amazingly plenty. Get yourself your favorite beverage and start reading and watching.

Yours, 💕
Birgit

Release week at WordPress

WordPress is such a fantastic open-source project. I admire the team and the people in it so much!

The public Slack channel of the release squad helped me understand more of the complexities behind making software that is used by many millions of people all over the world. If you ever get a chance to spend a few minutes scrolling through the discussions on slack, on trac or GitHub, do it. Meet the people, who bring the work of hundreds of contributors over the finish line. Meet the contributors.

WordPress 5.8 Beta 4 is out and ready for your testing. WordPress 5.8 RC 1 is scheduled for June 29th, 2021. That comes with a hard string freeze, and the Polyglot teams get into high gear with translations. It’s also the deadline for DevNotes of the more significant changes coming with this release.

Gutenberg 10.9 and 10.9.1 were released. Some bug fixes will be ported back to be included in the WordPress 5.8. Grzegorz Ziolkowski and I recorded the Gutenberg Changelog #46 yesterday, and it will be published on Monday. Our editor, Sandy, is on a well-deserved break over the weekend. Justin Tadlock took 10.9 for a spin at the WPTavern.

Gutenberg Changelog #46 is now available — 6/27

 “Keeping up with Gutenberg – Index 2021” 
A chronological list of the WordPress Make Blog posts from various teams involved in Gutenberg development: Design, Theme Review Team, Core Editor, Core JS, Core CSS, Test and Meta team from Jan. 2021 on. Updated by yours truly. The index 2020 is here

Theme.json Resources

You can read an Introducing theme.json in WordPress 5.8 by Andre Maneiro on the Core Make blog.

You can read up on the details specifications in the Block Editor Handbook: Global Settings & Styles (theme.json).

Another fantastic way to get your feet wet is to heed the Call for Testing #8 out of the FSE outreach program. Anne McCarthy has some interesting tasks for you. Justin Tadlock has more for you on the WordPress Tavern

Tammie Lister started a new project “Ephemeral Themes” and shared her thoughts on theme.json and why she is excited again for theme development. Theme.json inspires

The Gutenberg team is in ongoing discussion about various topics. Two were raised during the Live Q & A. Both could use your opinion and ideas.

A good way to get started and see the configuration in action is to study the themes available in the Theme Experiments repository on GitHub.

Full Site Editing

Another theme by Ana Segota, built for the Site editor will come to the WordPress directory. Justin Tadlock took it for a spin. Clove: A Showcase of Block Patterns by Anariel Design.

Anne McCarthy published FSE Program Polished Portfolios Summary with the updated feedback from a great group of participants.

On her personal blog, Anne McCarthy also published On Future Outreach Program Models in the WordPress Community. She shared some of her learn lessons on running the FSE outreach program and what needs to happen to make this a permanent contributor activity within WordPress.

Here is the Upcoming FSE Outreach Program Schedule

Ben Dwyer on ThemeShaper posted Some Ideas for Universal Themes. He wrote: “A universal theme would work in both editing modes.  A user should be able to build a site in classic mode and switch to FSE mode when the Site Editor is more mature or when they are ready to try all the extra tools that Full Site Editing will bring. Changes to a theme in classic mode should be reflected when I enable the Site Editor.” and goes into more details on how that could work. At Automattic, they experiment with the Quadrat theme.

Need a plugin .zip from Gutenberg’s main (trunk) branch?
Gutenberg Times provides daily build for testing and review.
Have you been using it? Hit reply and let me know.

GitHub all releases

Block Patterns

About 80 Patterns have been published in the Pattern Directory on WordPress.org, Kjell Reigstad reported in his Update: Initial Patterns for the Patterns Directory over the last two weeks, Kjell, Mel Choyce and Beatriz Fialho were fielding community submissions and working with the designers. There are wonderful and useful patterns, you can use for your site.

The discussion about Block Patterns on the WordPress Tavern has readers ruminating about Theme Lock-In, Silos, and the Block System. In a Post Status discussion, Tammie Lister thought the opposite is true. “it’s going to be easier, not harder, to switch with the newer set up.” And then she continues: “Try swapping between themes now. It’s not a picnic. It’s often a sad rained on picnic with soggy sandwiches of sadness, even with the best hope.” 🌧️ I might steal that metaphor from Tammie 💕

Speaking of Block Patterns, the design team also brought Block Patterns to all WordPress Twenty themes, all the way back to Twenty-Ten. They will be released with WordPress 5.8. Milana Cap published about these Bundled themes changes in WordPress 5.8. They are a great inspiration for designer on what can be possible with Block Patterns now. Justin Tadlock at the WordPress Tavern also took the new patterns out for a spin.

In Theme patterns for the Site Editor Kjell Reigstad show off a new UI to handle the display of different patterns for a header. It is an expansion of the block pattern display for Query Loop for various Post list layouts. He also shared his code and a short tutorial. Kjell also used the Quadrat theme from the Automattic repository

Header Patterns in Quadrat Theme / Automattic

Block Development and Plugins

For block builders, the Core-editor team published two DevNotes this week.

Block API Enhancements in WordPress 5.8 by Grzegorz Ziolkowski, encouraging plugins developers to using the block.json metadata file. He lists under the benefits:

  • code sharing between JavaScript and PHP and other languages,
  • optimized enqueuing of assets on the frontend to support performance increases.
  • Allows listing of the block on the Block Type REST API endpoint
  • It’s a requirement for blocks to be included in the WordPress Plugin Directory

Block supports API updates for WordPress 5.8  by Daisy Olsen, which outlines and additional support options for color, duotone, fontSize, lineHeight, spacing options for blocks and themes.


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Featured Image: “File:Lego Color Bricks.jpg” by Alan Chia is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

by Birgit Pauli-Haack at September 30, 2021 06:15 PM under Weekend Edition

Gutenberg Times: Theme.json for WordPress Theme Authors – demo and Live Q & A w/ Daisy Olson, Tammie Lister and Jeff Ong

On June 24th, we hosted Gutenberg Times Live Q & A on the topic “Theme.json for Theme Authors – Getting started with theme development for Full-site Editing” It was a great pleasure and privilege to have Daisy Olson, developer advocate at Automattic, Tammie Lister, design lead at Extendify and Jeff Ong, code wrangler at Automattic on the show.

Jeff Ong prepared a demo for us, and then attendees had some interesting questions our panelists answered. You can read the transcript below.

WordPress 5.8 will come with the infrastructure and foundation to control the block editor and theme settings via the configuration file theme.json. JSON is a universal data format that is readable to PHP and JavaScript alike.

Themes no longer have to pretend that they’re plugins.

Tammie Lister

Resources about theme.json and themes for Full-site editing

During the show, we mentioned a few places where you can dive in and learn more about theme.json.

You can read an Introducing theme.json in WordPress 5.8 by Andre Maneiro on the Core Make blog.

You can read up on the details specifications in the Block Editor Handbook: Global Settings & Styles (theme.json).

A good way to get started and see the configuration in action is to study the themes available in the Theme Experiments repository on GitHub.

Another fantastic way to get your feet wet is to heed the Call for Testing #8 out of the FSE outreach program. Anne McCarthy has some interesting tasks for you.

Tammie Lister started a new blog and shared her thoughts on theme.json and why she is excited again for theme development. Theme.json inspires

The Gutenberg team is in ongoing discussion about various topics. Two were raised during the Live Q & A. Both could use your opinion and ideas.

Themes for Full-site Editing in the WordPress.org repository

Transcript

This transcript is still a work in progress – Birgit

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Well, and then we can start the webinar here. The webinar is now live and welcome to our 28th Gutenberg live Q and A on this June 24th. My name is Birgit Pauli-Haack and I am your host for today’s discussion. Thank you all for watching, and it’s great to have you. And while you all come in, use the chat window to tell us where you are and where you’re watching from. 

And today we will discuss a new way to configure themes, that is black themes, with global styles and settings file theme.json. And it will enable theme developers to centralize all the block-based settings, color palettes, font sizes, and other block-based customizations. This way you will also control which of the other block features the theme supports or does not support. 

So that’s my simple mind’s description of the new features and I’m so thrilled to have three experts on the show to go beyond this simple explanation and help theme developers to get started. I’m extremely honored to have Daisy Olsen, developer advocate at Automatic and WordPress contributor. Hey, good to have you. Also Jeff Ong, code wrangler at Automatic.

Jeff Ong: Hello.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Thanks for being here. And at last but not at least Tammie Lister, design lead at Extendify.

Tammie Lister: Hello.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: We’ll do some proper introduction in less than a minute. I just have a few housekeeping notes. So after the introduction, we’ll have a first round robin question and then we see a demo. Jeff was working really hard on it and I think he was the only one repairing hard for this live Q and A. And then we’ll discuss the different angles and how they get started. And then, of course, answer your question.

Speaking of questions, how do you pose your questions? There’s a Q and A on the bottom of the screen, a kind of icon. You click on that and write your question. And for those watching on YouTube use the chat window next to the video player. And so saying hi. Hi, Victor. From Buenos Aires in Argentina. Awesome. Thank you for being here. All right. When you do comments and questions, so please be kind even if you disagree. 

This is a family endeavor. All right. Well, I’m thrilled you all agreed dear panelists to come on the show and I get an hour to talk with you about your work. So, Daisy, tell us a little bit about you, where are you’re located and what is it that you do as developer advocate on the purpose project and at Automatic?

Daisy Olsen: Yeah. I’m Daisy Olsen and I live in New Hampshire in the United States. It’s a beautiful day here right now unlike some parts of this country that are really hot. We got the cool weather over here this week. So as a developer advocate, I talk about WordPress a lot.

I get out and do workshops, teach classes, write documentation and just stay involved and close to the projects development so that I know what’s going on theoretically and can share that out particularly with plugin and theme developers as well as agencies and freelancers and things like that.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Awesome. So glad you’re here. Thank you. So, Tammie, thank you for coming back to the show. It’s been over three years. The last time you were on the show was just after Gutenberg was merged into Core and you were one of the three leads with Matias Ventura and Joen Asmussen. 

And you shared a lot about the journey of Gutenberg and the philosophy behind it. So I will put the link to the show into the show notes for you who have been coming later to Gutenberg. But this year you joined the WordPress product company Extendify. So what do you do there?

Tammie Lister: First of all, has it been three years? That goodness. Time flies. So in Extendify I focus on design. So our solutions extend the editor. And then the aim is to make it even more usable for people’s purpose that they want to use it for. And I’m really, really excited about that.

So it means that people can have the best experience from the content they’re creating, to the layout, the patterns, the styles, whatever that the editor enables, that’s really what I’m focusing on. So it’s a interesting new challenge to do. And you have blew my brain with that time span. You really have. That’s awesome.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Well, it’s also over three years that Gutenberg times us. So I’ve been part of that journey so for so long.

Tammie Lister: Congrats.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Nothing really held my attention for so long. And normally I get really bored. Well, I’m also really happy that Extendify took over Editor Plus from Munir Kumal and the EditorsKit from Jeffrey Carandang. So, those have a more sustainable way now to access because both Munir and Jeffrey seem to have… Munir joined you, but Jeffrey moved on to be a consultant at , I think, 10up.

Tammie Lister: It’s so really exciting. 

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Yeah. I imagine. So thank you also to Jeff Ong for joining us today as well. You’re a code wrangler in Automatic and what have you been working on lately except for the demo. I know about that.

Jeff Ong: Well, first, thank you for having me and hosting this. Awesome to be here. I feel very honored to be with three on-time contributors. So super cool. At Automattic, I’ve been working on theme development, pretty solely focused on that for the last year. And my background is not in WordPress. 

So it’s kind of been an interesting journey to transition and learn about the ecosystem and really coming at a transitory time figuring out how do we kind of move into this new block-based paradigm? How do we make themes that work with the block editor really well and can hopefully unlock more creativity for just really great design. And I can tell you what sites again. Well, making new themes and figuring out how to do that with the latest version of Gutenberg, which turns out every day.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: So the viewers follow Jeff Ong, he’s going to teach you how to do things with the Block Editor. And we will soon see a little demo of that. It’s what Daisy said, “What you did in five minutes, I taught a course on that in three hours.” So it’s going to be a little fast paced today. 

What will change most for the theme developers when building themes for full-site editing?

But before we head into media’s raised, I would like to ask each of you, so what do you think will change most for the theme developers when building themes? These are for agency building custom themes for the clients or for theme shops rolling out new themes to sell. Do you want to start, Tammie?

Tammie Lister: Yeah. That’s interesting because I think perhaps it’s a change if you wanted to be a change. Because lots of this is an opt-in, as is the way. WordPress, the best way to opt-in. I go back to a lot of times that this is a freeing of things and I think it brings an opportunity that has pros and cons, ups and downs with opportunities.

But plug-ins themes no longer have to pretend that they’re plugins and they no longer have to be everything and have to be things that they weren’t intended to be in the first. So I think that that is a challenge in itself because there’s a certain way that you maybe thought you had to do things and now you don’t have to work around things. We often have to work around things in WordPress. 

And if you don’t have to work around it, it can feel a little bit peculiar, but once you realize you don’t have to do that, it’s actually really awesome. But you have to realize you don’t have to and that WordPress was getting in the way. I also think as a result there’s going to be a space for more creativity, and this can also be really to challenging because maybe you were limited to what you could do creativity wise because of just the confinements of the space and the confinements of what you could do before. 

And it’s going to open things again to a lot more people. And a lot more people who maybe didn’t have access to a theme developer with experience who knew the exact ins and outs of it. So I think that’s a challenge because new people in this space, new creativity. But honestly I think it’s a good thing. It’s just if you want to and you’re open to it and you can kind of explore those new ways, but I don’t think it’s a change that you have to make. I think that’s the thing.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Awesome. Thank you. Daisy, what do you think?

Daisy Olsen: So I think I would agree with Tammie that the barrier of entry for a new theme designer. And I think that’s one of the key things is it’s bringing the design back to theming. Theming over time became very functional. We had a lot of theme companies that were trying to make their themes as flexible, powerful and feature-ful as possible to reach a wide variety of people.

And I think that we can see some opportunity for vertically oriented designs coming out where you have a theme that is geared towards a restaurant or geared towards, I don’t know, a salon or a certain kind of a business or even a personal site.

And I think that there’s a lot of opportunity to be able to have a lot of variety out there in the marketplace so that when someone asks you inevitable question, because this was probably the most common question when I was working for a thing company is which theme is best for this? 

I’m doing this kind of a site, which themes should I use. And it could make it so, well, here are five that are really geared towards what you’re trying to do instead of, oh, you can use any of them. You just have to do all this work to get it to look bright.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Yeah. That’s a good point. Thank you. Jeff?.

Jeff Ong: Definitely, from a design perspective, it’s super exciting. I want to highlight maybe a little bit more from the development side. This seems like the biggest opportunity or clearest opportunity to ensure that your theme is integrated with the editor. That the things that you’re doing with the editor and your ability to customize it to control what presets and options are available there to the users of the theme, this is the theme [inaudible 00:12:27].

It’s a unifying kind of idea and single point of truth. Talking about theme.json and even just this whole concept of how do we bring the experience together. I think we have an opportunity to do that and that’s going to change even in some small level. Even if your theme.json cloud just as a few settings. You can take it slow like Tammie was saying. Incorporate parts of it because to me you have this new contract now that can really unify things and bring things together from a lot of disparate parts and pieces.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Lots to think about. And I agree with all of you. I had this pleasure last year that I took over themes from agencies and they were so powerful and all the things that normally a plug-in will do, custom post types and rigid and all that. It’s all in one place and we won’t be able to change a theme at all. 

So now this is definitely going to make life a lot easier for site owners as well So lots to think about and listening to you is quite inspiring to kind of think, oh, well how many direction can my brain go now? But, Jeff, are you ready for your demo? I think it would be helpful for all the people here on the call to see what it’s all about and how it kind of gets started.

Jeff Ong: Yes. We have 10 minutes roughly. Yes. Can you see my screen? 

Birgit Pauli-Haack: We can see your screen. Yes.

Demo: Configuring the block editor with theme.json file

14.02

Jeff Ong: So we have a blank theme here and I just want to kind of go over some, not going to cover everything, but some of the key parts of that theme.json introduces and show how that impacts a blank theme and also the editor. So hopping over to my code editor. I have my theme.JSON here. This is a really basic, simple theme and nothing going on yet. 

In here I’m going to go ahead and the first thing I want to talk about are the settings of your theme.JSON. Settings are kind of what control or give you the ability to configure the editor and what kind of customization options are present to a user and the theme. The only thing I have right now is the layout, which we’ll get to in a second. But let’s say I want to add some color options here.

Previously it would be done in the functions PHP. I have kind of a few sheets over here. Sorry. I need to hide these meeting control. I’m going to copy a color palette from this. I’m going to set a palette that’s going to become available to me in my theme. I go to edit the same post. In here I see my cornso, my orange, red, and color blue that’s become available to me. 

What’s pretty interesting about this is before you would have had to kind of go into functions at this whole palette and then also define the class name, something like this to actually apply those styles. Let’s say I want this heading to be orange, update it. Show it here. I get all this cool stuff for free. This class was generated for me by Gutenberg using this preset and that I have defined meeting controls defined here in my palette options. 

Another cool thing or interesting about the possibility here is within the same configuration. Let’s say I’m the theme designer. I have the option right now to change the color to kind of anything I want. The powerful thing about theme.json at this time is it can actually turn something like this off. I actually don’t want people or my users to be able to change anything, change the color palette.

But let’s go ahead and reset this back here. Turned off custom colors within theme.json. And then back here you’ll see that option has disappeared. So inaccessible color combinations or just color combinations that you don’t want to be available. You can turn that off. This is just one of the options that are available. Color is just one of the options that you can customize.

You can also take a look at something like typography. I think I can find some font sizes here. Refresh. I can see now that those presets were available, are now available to me. I can do the same thing again here too. Say I don’t actually want people to be able to change all sides here. As a designer I know it’s best and I don’t want people putting in random font sizes. 

So disable that and now only my presets are available too. Oh, by the way, this content is just kind of some standard block-based content. Again, I’m getting all of this kind of for free or for free in a way by just applying some preset values here. Well, I think the next thing that I wanted to cover is going into the last thing. I’ll cover it within the settings because you can actually change these per block. 

Remember we were looking at color before. I could add a color key to the paragraph block and actually say, just kidding. I want to allow you to be able to change the color of paragraph blocks. Just the paragraph blocks. I can open up the whole thing. So within here now I can see, oh, I can actually change just for paragraph blocks. I go up to my heading. This custom color is not available. This color option is not available. 

If you want to I could also supply a custom palette. I’m not going to do that, but could say if you wanted a specific palette that’s just applied for paragraph blocks. That would be how you do it. So I think that’s it for settings. I’m going to go ahead and collapse this now and move on to the styles key of our theme.json. And now within here I can start to define some files. 

Remember our colors from up here from the palette. I can go ahead and because I know that WordPress is generating CSS variables based on these palettes, I can go ahead and start to use those within the styles application of the style section of my theme.json. So with the preset color, put orange red. See what else do. These are going to apply at the top level. So this is going to apply to everything.

Say I only wanted, for instance, my headings to be… Let’s make this. Do the same thing in here and say, ah, I just want, actually, let’s just make my paragraph colors black. So, again, what I’ve done here is I’ve set my global kind of text color to this orange red was preset, which was provided by WordPress and generated here to the entire text. And then actually I can go in and target specific block, set the settings for that as well. 

I think we are close. I just want to show, well, if you’re editing this, something that’s also probably going to happen and mess this up. It should throw some kind of an error here yet. Notice there when decoding theme.json. So that’ll let you know there’s something going on because it’s pretty easy tip something up here. 

And I think that’s just a small note is we’ll likely encounter that if you’re configuring keys and nested objects trying to figure out how each of those apply. You pause here for a second. I guess the last thing I want to cover too is the concept of elements. So within here, any h2 that I have is going to be applied a specific style here. So I have the same because [inaudible 00:24:24] can appear outside of blocks or links, for example.

These are restricted to a specific set at the moment. So let’s just say text. So, again, because this is not actually rendered as a pocket and an element and that can appear anywhere. That’s something that I can target with this kind of top level elements select here. Everything else here you can target with the name of the block. 

That is most of what I wanted to cover pretty fast, but again all of the settings that you can find here or that I’m going over, there’s way more than just color. There’s spacing, typography and all of that can be found in documentation that Birgit, I think she shared it here. So that I want to open it up. And I guess there are questions. If there are specific parts that anyone would want to go into in a little more detail. Happy to do that.

Daisy Olsen: Thank you, Jeff. 

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Thank you, Jeff. This was awesome. Do you want to just say something?

Daisy Olsen: Yeah. I just wanted to say that maybe we could just talk about layout real quick because I think that’s going to be a big one for 5.8.

Jeff Ong: Yeah. And I kind of skipped over. It was the first thing that was in here. Yes. Layout key is a way for you to quickly define the default, the width of your content within WordPress or within here. So if you see here, if I don’t define this layout, a lot of my content is just going to be full width by default. 

You can supply two values here. Content size, it’s just going to be the default width. You can also define, I think it’s, what is it? Wide size. Wide width. Nothing happened there because I hadn’t provided it. Maybe there’s a better way to show that with cover block. 

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Nice. I like it. 

Jeff Ong: Pretty cool. You can, I mean, alignment coming together and within a unified system reliably layout content with starting here is pretty powerful stuff I’d say.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Yeah. Awesome. So I shared in the chat window, if you haven’t seen it, the documentation link where you can read up about the theme.json as a whole. When you say, Daisy, that that’s the layout will be important for 5.8, which part of it would be, where does it come into play?

Daisy Olsen: So with 5.8 with the custom template functionality that’s coming where you can basically create a custom template for an entire page or a post that would cover your header as well as your content. If you need to have these setting set for the width, especially the content size for it but preferably also wide so that your site knows how wide it should be. 

Otherwise you get kind of the facts that Jeff showed where it was the full width of the page. It didn’t have anything to contain it down to the width that you want. So for any theme that wants to use the template editor would benefit from having a theme.json file that even if it only has the one thing in it, it would be good way to take advantage of it.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Yeah. It’s an excellent tip. Thank you, Daisy. You heard it here first. So we already got some questions in our Q and A, but I just wanted to have one question for Jeff before. That’s my prerogative as a host, I get the first question. So if I understood it correctly, so until now, theme.json comes into play I had to create many different places or touch many different places to make a color palette work.

So, I had to put it in my functions.php and then I also have to put it in my style sheet. Is [inaudible 00:30:04] that I don’t have to do this anymore, or do I still have to put it into my style sheet, or is it automatically created with when I put the color palette in the theme.json?

Jeff Ong: It is wonderful question. It is automatically created. This is all that that style sheet looks like since this is one of the big very exciting aspects of a theme.json. It’s that it’s managing this for you. And then also I think more down the line by providing colors and styles in this way. And then also by applying the styles here you can guarantee that those blocks are going to integrate properly.

It’s like the styles for those blocks are going to be more closely tied and actually in how the block is implemented. So no more writing styles that are overwriting that we’re having to target specific nested blocks. And so there’s tons of complications to this and there’s a lot more room to mature and develop, but I think that’s one of the parts I’m most excited about. To your point, there’s one place now where I can define my palette and show how it should be applied. I don’t have to go into two different places to do it.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: All right. Well, let’s go to the questions. Victor Kane, from the beginning of the show has already put them in and he’s particular interested in finding out about the workflow using them theme.json. So one is the best editing alternative for VS Code formatting, and then the second one was the possibility for exporting interactive selections to clipboard and code. I’m not quite sure I understand the question. Maybe you understand it, Jeff Daisy, Tammie.

Tammie Lister: Personally. So I think this is a personal choice. I’m going to start with an answer and then go to… I use VS Code, so I may not be able to give the right answer there. I would be curious to know what you don’t want in VS Code, and I think that that’s the thing. This opens up personal… I’m going to be really bad at reading the response in chat whilst talking. So I’m going to be a little bit pertinent and kind of speak first. I’m sorry, I’ll get back to it.

It’s your personal choice how you write and then you can kind of go back to it. So the thing that I did, this was my workflow, it has been my workflow so far, and I think this is the thing, we’re all finding our own new workflows with these new toys that we’re playing with. So what I’ve been doing is I’ve been using theme.json. 

I’ve actually been setting up variables using SAS that have been then pulling in root variables into my theme.json so that I can pull them through. That’s a weird way to do it. That’s strange, but the reason being, it means I can reuse and keep things separately. But I’m sure that everybody on this call has their own little workflows that they are kind of working from.

Daisy Olsen: My approach to that was actually the opposite that I was using my theme.json to set all of my variables so that I didn’t need SAS, which I think for those that never quite got their head wrapped around preprocessed CSS, it might be a way to simplify things for those that prefer it that way.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Awesome. 

Tammie Lister: I think it’s what you’re cozy with, right? And I think that’s the thing. This can adapt to what was your cozy blanket of coding, and you don’t have to lose that yet, I think.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: All right. So Victor commented on that. If I get the results, I want interactively with the global settings panel on the right-hand side of the editor, can I export that to a theme.json format?

Daisy Olsen: The answer is not right now. I think there’s discussion in the teams about maybe building it, but it hasn’t been the highest priority because everything needs to work first before we start working on an exporter. But there are other parts of that can be exported in that full site editing experience that can be exported. So I think it would be a natural progression to add the ability to do a theme.json export.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Yes. Definitely there will be.

Tammie Lister: From the very beginning, there were designs in global style. Sorry. The reason I know is that was one thing I did partake on. There was exporting. So I have a feeling if we all wanted to play some little happy bets, there will be exploiting at some point.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Yeah. But if we all bet on the same thing, it’s not really bet, right? Victor, as always, you’re a little bit ahead of the time. So and from Jan Horna, from the Czech Republic, it’s very hot by now there. 

He has two questions as a theme developer, one, is the theme.json supposed to include all the styling, formatting definitions and replaced the CSS style? And I think we’d take it one at a time. So we talked a little bit about it from my question, but would it replace? You could still do all those styling in the style sheets as you want, right?

Daisy Olsen: And I think there are some things that will remain in other styling, but you could use the variables that you set or the properties that you set in your theme.json in your CSS. So they can work together. But I don’t think that theme.json, at least right now, will not completely replace an entire site’s design, especially if you have a very complex design.

Why do we want to rewrite CSS in JSON

Jeff Ong: Yeah. And this was one of my first questions and honestly, skepticism early on of the proposal around this, is CSS is great. Why do we want to rewrite CSS in JSON. And then it slowly, I mean, other people are obviously smarter than me understood this quickly. It’s not about rewriting all of CSS. There’s definitely going to be aspects of your site, especially if you have taking, like you’re saying, more complicated designs that will remain in CSS. 

But this is about creating, I think, more of the foundational elements and understanding how the blocks will interact with your styles and having that single point of contact, I think is most important. So I think for me, at least it’s more about the foundational elements that are going to be placed and managed this way than replacing your entirety of your styles. Because this great. 

Things like animations and transformation, and this is all really powerful stuff that I don’t imagine, really, at least in the super near future, having a big part of theme.json. To the question about, will you be able to save an export a theme.json from global styles? I think this is a really important thing to keep in mind is what I just showed you is kind of unnatural. I don’t imagine a future necessarily where theme developers are writing raw JSON.

It’s really, there’s not a great experience for it. It’s a configuration file. And so the more, to points that have already been raised, it’s about we’re in this phase now because we need to kind of identify and get it to work, and then we can kind of build an ecosystem around what would a really cool UI look like to generate one of these files? Is it native directly to global styles? How do we start to imagine those interfaces so the theme developers or theme designers can really get to the core of this experience too?

Birgit Pauli-Haack: All right. Well, thank you. Good point. You wanted to say something.

Tammie Lister: Yeah. I was just going to say over time, CSS has gained so much. So I didn’t know about anyone else, but I had a block.css file that was getting bigger and bigger of supporting blocks and doing things. And something I’ve noticed that I can do is throw that file away, and I couldn’t be happier because what I can do now is lean into these defaults. I’m still going to have some lines of CSS, the output by whatever, a preprocessor, whatever, my happy little whatever. 

Because everyone has got their own way and we should have our own way of doing it. But it’s a foundation, and it means that we’re not having to work around the editor or find different ways of doing it. I set up naturally a hack file for the editor out of habit. I haven’t filled it with anything yet in the latest theme I’ve been working on. 

I’m delighted if I never fill that up with anything on the next theme, because it means that the new way we’re doing things hasn’t had me to work around that. I can just use the foundation and create a really awesome experience on top of it. And that’s what we should be doing. We should be working with the editor, not having to work around it, or using not important like it was going out of fashion to go over control of it. It was this awkward middle ground we were working in trying to make things fit that paradigm. 

Birgit Pauli-Haack: And I think that fits right into the next question from Jan Horna again, and he says so as a block theme developer, should I focus from a strategic point of view on theme.json block styles, or block patterns. In other words, how do I differentiate? It’s kind of a high-level question there.

Daisy Olsen: I would say all of the above. They’re all important things. And your block styles are part of theme.json, I would say. But block patterns are really a powerful partner to the theme.json, that you can create building blocks for a site where you’ve got some really amazing very specific designed elements that could be used for different things on a site. So if you’re creating a commercial application that’s going to go out to a wide audience, they can be more generic. 

But if you have a client and you’re working as a freelancer or in an agency where you have a site that needs to have access to these things that they’re going to use more than once, patterns are a fantastic way to do that, where most of the work is done for them. They don’t have to reconfigure everything from the ground up every time they want to create something similar to what they’ve done before.

What happens when you update the color palette? Will saved blocks have the new colors?

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Thank you. And Spencer McCormick in the chat had a question. So what happens when you update the color palette or similar, for example, if you have a primary and secondary colors, when you update and change the palette colors, will saved blocks have the new colors? That’s an interesting question. Thank you, Spenser.

Daisy Olsen: I can answer that to some extent. If you think of your palette as named colors, if you give the different hex code to the same name, it should apply to the site. But if you give it a new name, then that’s a new element, and it won’t apply to anything that already had an old name attached to it.

Jeff Ong: There is a hefty discussion related to this question on the naming of colors in the way that Gutenberg wants to supply a default palette or a default set of named colors so that you could reliably… What we’re seeing I think is that I think patterns have been wanting to rely on specific colors across kind of, so you can guarantee oh, when corn flour shows up it’s always going to be corn flour. 

It’s always going to be available. There’s a lot of complication and nuance around it. But if, I think today, to answer your question, like Daisy is saying, today, if I were to supply a value or a named value here and then change it or take it out of my palette, then that would break the experience or it would no longer be applied to that.

And that’s part of the challenge, how do we reliably solve for that? How do we give theme office the tools to figure that out. But now if they set a custom color, if you set a custom color on an element or a block, then that will remain because it’s a specific X value, but the class names will go away though, if they’re supplied by the theme.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: So great discussions. And I’m probably going to share, and if it’s one issue where that discuss the theme team every week kind of shares all the things that are discussed and that need input from the community or other theme developers on their make blog. 

So that is definitely a place to go to chime in and we’ll find all the discussions that are happening. And then chime in in the ones that you find important and that you are worried about. So Tim Bowen has the question, how does the theme.json handle responsive sizes for font sizes especially. Responsive sizes.

Daisy Olsen: By default, I’m not sure.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: You’ve stomped the panelists. Yes, we did it.

Tammie Lister: I mean, you can use not just pixel values for your fonts, so-

Daisy Olsen: That’s what I was going to say. 

Tammie Lister: … that helps. And I think it’s a work in progress. So things like responsive and breakpoints. But the now answer is you don’t have to just use pixels. And Jeff just gave a great leak.

Jeff Ong: I just dropped the issue in that has not seen a lot of activity around it, but the idea of media. So the first part of your question on font sizes, there are ways of calculating this where they’re not pixel values tied to specific viewports. You could supply a calculated value, for example, in your small… that is based on a viewport size. 

So it’s kind of a paradigm shift or design paradigm shift of getting away from you must be 12 pixels under below 600 pixel viewport width, to more of are we okay with kind of a fluid typography kind of system? That being said, there are instances where you need media queries, and that is not currently… I don’t know how actively that’s being worked on right now. But a wonderful thing open to contributors.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: So Patty has a comment and a question after that, Patty O’Hara, I most often develop custom themes for clients and hand them off for the clients to update the content. And playing around with new tools, I’m excited to start using them, but don’t want to give access to global standards to anyone with admin access. Will the granularity of permissions changes so that I can block access to changing fonts and colors from within the admin?

Tammie Lister: I think this amazing thing happens in where also Jeff showed some of the control you can do. So in the demo, there was some control that you can do. But my process is a history of configurability and being able to do that be it in code, or be it in a plugin. But I honestly think we need to be a little bit cautious. This is my personal opinion here, and we need to maybe embrace allowing people to do styling. 

You can set boundaries, you can set branding boundaries, you can set pallets, you can set topography. But we need to move away a little bit from having such pixel fixated control in that sense and think about safely within boundaries, expression of these tools. And that people can create really amazing things, and you can maintain branding that way, and it can empower someone. 

These themes are becoming style guides, and that’s something that is known in the corporate world and used within that space as well. It’s a term, but it’s kind of democratizing design in that sense in giving people all these tools to play with, and I think it’s a huge change in the way that we’ve done things, but I think it’s really, really important and really, really empowering to the people that are using our themes.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: That’s a good advocacy for set it free. Thank you.

Tammie Lister: But you’re allowed to have boundaries. I think you can set it free, but be comfortable about some boundaries. I think sometimes when we say set it free, it can be scary because we don’t say you’re allowed to have some boundaries, but with pallets and with these style guides, that’s what you’re saying. You’re saying I’m making these good decisions for you and you can choose from this platform of good decisions. And that’s kind of awesome. I think,

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Yeah. I like the plea for block patterns that Daisy just a couple of minutes had that block patterns also give you the possibility or the option to actually provide different facets of how a section can be organized or styled within the style design system that you build with the block add on. 

And so I think that there is a lot of creativity that will come from that as well. So Tim Bowen is brave and contemplating, is it safe to use the theme.json now for a project launching in August? Would we just activate the Gutenberg plugin and add JSON file? Or is there more to it? I would love to move away from our functions in Editor.js method probably as soon as possible. So what would we say to Tim?

Daisy Olsen: The theme is not a block theme, as in it doesn’t use HTML templates, then I probably wouldn’t put the Gutenberg plugin on a production website, unless you are ready to deal with unexpected things happening. But placing your theme.json file in your classic theme on the 5.8 beta or release candidate that will be coming, I would start testing there and see if the things that you’re putting in your theme.json file work with 5.8 on a classic theme. That’d be my suggestion.

Tammie Lister: I think if it’s launching in August, that means 5.8 should be out. She tries to check her mental calendar. So I think tests. I, personally, am okay. I would consider it if it was going into a site, but I would also want to know how many users were using it, what their levels was, what they were doing, what they were going to create, and how they were going to do it. So it’s a… this is not legal advice. I feel that there should be [inaudible 00:50:36] advice that I can be. 

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Don’t try this at home. 

Tammie Lister: But by then, 5.8 should be out.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Yeah. 5.8 comes out July 20th, that’s at least the schedule for that. So we ran out of questions right now one the Q and A sessions here. Well, you’re welcome, Tim. Good luck with that, and let us know. Is there more to the setting it up besides just activating the plugin or adding the JSON file. Well, back to kind of using it and editing. 

When there are already themes available in the theme repository that use the full set up for full site editing and use all the template parts and templates with the blocks, and header blocks, and photo blocks, and all that. But I’m not quite sure of that yet. Be careful about the using the Gutenberg plugin in production. It always has a few hiccups there.

So it wasn’t the first time ever that I retreated to the last version when I had one and had to wait till one, two, or three point releases to come out. So I’m hesitant to say do it in production. Test it as much as possible. So I have a lot of things on my screen, but not the right thing. Here, so it is. Oh, Ryan, we are pretty good time wise. 

So, I don’t have an additional… So, when we say how to get started, what was the first thing most difficult part for you for learning, or was there a mind shift until it clicked? Just to kind of get away from a fear of learning something new, and was there something when you go back ages on the theme.json thing.

Tammie Lister: So for me, it was realizing it wasn’t as hard as I maybe mentally thought it was. It was just the same with learning anything. You always think it’s going to be super hard, or at least with me, I read like dev doc and I’m like… My brain makes that noise. And then I just letting my theme be lighter. Letting it take the weight of that, giving up control, which as someone that’s maybe a bit of an old themer, giving up control of things, that’s an interesting process to go through. 

But it’s really important embracing those foundations. And when you do, there’s that mind shift of creating in the editor. That was the moment that… And I’m still going through the process. I think it’s a process, and it’s a process as these tools are evolving. We’re talking about be gentle, they’re in production. These tools are still evolving and working. 

If you are using these tools now before it’s released, then you’re going to hit bugs and report them. But that’s the thing. This theme.json also… the moment I kind of, the Jenga box, the blocks fell in my brain was I stopped seeing it as global stars. And I knew it wasn’t just global stars, but I felt it wasn’t just global stars and this felt like it could be the backbone of my theme, and it felt like it wasn’t everything in my theme, but it felt like it could be the backbone, is the best way I can describe it. 

And I could hang my theme from it. And we’ve hung our theme from functions.php wrongly, I think. So it was just that change from PHP to doing it all in the editor and creating and seeing that JSON. It just was free, and it’s more in line with how things are made outside WordPress, which I think is delightful.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Any comments from you that you want to add, Daisy?

Daisy Olsen: So when I first started working with a theme.json file, I found that I had to… So there’s a whole section called styles, and I had to realign my thinking about what that meant, because what it’s saying is there are style settings in your blocks or for your site level depending on how it’s being applied, and what you’re doing is configuring the defaults for it. 

So if I think of the theme.json file as a default file, then it helped me frame it so that I’m not necessarily replacing my CSS depending on… I mean, I’m letting theme.json do the heavy lifting, kind of like Tammie said, but then I can take it further if I feel like I need to, or I want to. So I like thinking of it as a configuration file or a defaults file.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: That’s a good point. Jeff, do you have any stories how I came about?

Jeff Ong: It’s been really helpful to pair on it with people, to work on a theme with someone. I think if my team at Automattic. It’s a very culture of collaboration, and if you have the opportunity to say, “I’m having trouble with this. Would you want to work on this?” With someone like that, because this definitely can be a head bashing kind of why is this not being applied? 

I literally just wrote color green. Why is it not green? It can be so frustrating dealing with that. So to have someone just to look at your code and be like “Oh, you missed a comma or actually you need an extra key there” is really, really helpful for something like this.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Oh yeah. So well, I think we’re coming to the end of our show. This has been very interesting and inspiring. So thank you all so much. And for those who want to dive into at a guided kind of testing session, Anne McCarthy, who, as you might know, runs the Full Site Editing Outreach program, she’s about to post the eighth call for testing, and it will all be about the theme.json file.

So as soon as it’s out, I will share a link in the show notes. And of course, also if you subscribed to our Gutenberg Times newsletter, you will definitely be informed about that. So at this point, I only have two more questions for our panelists. So do you have any announcements that you couldn’t get out before and you want the people to keep in mind? And if people want to get in touch with you, what would be the best way. Tammie, you want to start?

Tammie Lister: Yeah. So I’m comatose in all the things. I’m pretty easy to find in a good way. And I love chatting to people. So please do. I think my thing to say would be remember all of what happening now you can help shape. Just because we’ve sat here talking about it doesn’t mean we know anything more than you? It just means we’ve poked it and we’ve played around with the code. 

So do that. Start exploring it. And it’s a lot more accessible than it ever was. It’s starting to be more accessible. There’s more documentation than there ever was coming out. And if you care about what happens with themes or you ever cared about what happens to themes, and maybe you could have that reignited, start to join the conversation. And I guess my final point would be, I think my hope is to see this experimentation come back to themes. 

I think we forgot about that a little bit and we need to have some fun again in these. We used to have so much fun in WordPress themes, and I look forward to not just themes to have a purpose, but just themes that are art, themes that are just wacky experiments, and start enjoying theming and make some art. I’m really excited to see what things people create and use them just for one day even. That’d be amazing.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Yeah. So Jeff, anything you want to have people keep in mind, and how to get in contact with you.

Jeff Ong: Yeah. Contact at J-F-F-N-G. And I guess keeping in mind, I’m just building on the last thing Tammie said, perhaps find a way to have fun with it and get curious about it, and try it. There’s really to me, a fundamental tendance of learning about something or you just have, how do I get curious about this thing? How do I play with it and have fun? And that’s going to be the most important thing to keep in at the center.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Thank you, Jeff, and thank you so much for the audio work on the demo. Daisy.

Daisy Olsen: I’m Daisy Olsen on most things, Olsen with an E, and I would say that as far as what you can do as the next step if you’re interested in learning more about this, is go to… I’m pretty sure that Birgit has a link to this somewhere, the theme experiments repository on GitHub in the WordPress space has things that other people have done or are working on. 

So I love to see examples of something in action to help me learn more about it and to see what other people have done. So I would say go check out something.json files in there and see what people have come up with.

Birgit Pauli-Haack: Awesome. Thank you so much. So big thank you to Daisy, Jeff, and Tammie to come today and make your time. A big thank you also for the viewers with all your great questions. I think we got a great array of it. And if you have more questions, you can always send them to me via email to pauli@gutenbergtimes.com, and I’ll get you the answers.

And the recording of the show will be available in a few minutes on our YouTube channel. And I’ll share all the links then also in the video description. And within a few days, we will have also a transcript that we will publish on the Gutenbergtimes.com. So be well, good-bye, and good luck. That was fun. Thank you.

Jeff Ong: Thank you, everyone.

by Birgit Pauli-Haack at September 30, 2021 06:15 PM under News

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October 10, 2021 09:00 AM
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