December 2018 saw the release of the long awaited WordPress 5.0 with the new Gutenberg editor. If you’re basically not a geek like us, and you haven’t heard anything about this new revelation over the last few weeks, time to clear that hazy Chrimbo hangover because you surely will in 2019.
Gutenberg is a significant project that has been in development for over 2 years. Just over 12 months ago, a version was made available as a plugin – for the community to test and bug fix. A year on, the project is finally ready for release and Gutenberg is now a reality, for even the most casual WordPress user.
Gutenberg’s New Editor
The new editor heralds momentous change and aims to revolutionise the WordPress writing experience and the content creation process in general. Since Gutenberg’s inclusion in version 5.0, content is now generated via a series of draggable blocks.
There is an appropriate block for managing each of the various content types – such as text, imagery, photo galleries, video, and embedded elements. The user can organise and re-arrange these via a simple drag and drop.
The Inspiration Marketing Theme has been using a very similar concept since 2016, so it’s great to discover that our development team is thinking ahead of the curve!
I’m Not Ready!! What About the Classic WordPress Editor???
If you have been working with the classic editor for some time, this new layout and functionality will need a bit of practice to get used to using it. However, if it all seems a little scary just now – as you face into January – you have the option of reverting back to the tried and trusted interface we are used to. The new Classic Editor plugin – officially maintained by the good folks at WordPress – will be available and supported until 2022.
Just search for it in the WordPress plugin repository from the dashboard, install and activate it, then you can continue to enjoy the traditional editing experience – if you’re having any problems or are unsure about the process give us a shout!
In fact, in the months leading up to this Gutenberg’s release, some teams of advanced developers within the WordPress ecosystem were recommending against upgrading to WordPress 5. The caution comes from the fact that some themes and plugins produced the dreaded “white screen of death” when Gutenberg was installed. Therefore, if you don’t have a safe environment in which to test WordPress 5 on your website, you may actually be well served to stick with WordPress 4.9 before updating.
If you want to be progressive, best to keep your head out of the sand though! As a prized project, Gutenberg is likely to become a WordPress mainstay – eventually.
On that note, it’s always worth keeping your ear to the ground regarding your WordPress website. Equally, it’s important to get into the habit of creating backups before major upgrades to avoid any potential loss of your site. If you need assistance to do this, just give us a bell here at Inspiration. We’re here to help.