This week (April 14) there was…

This week (April 14) there was a preannounced meeting with WordPress Project leaders Matt Mullenweg, Matias Ventura, Helen Hou-Sandi, and Josepha Haden Chomphosy. The purpose of the meeting was to host a “go/no go demo” to demonstrate and review the current state of Full Site Editing (FSE) in WordPress and to determine what, if anything, should be included in WordPress 5.8. (5.8 is scheduled for release in July 2021.) Some possible implementations of FSE were discussed in this meeting.

The decision was Go, but there were some suggestions to slow down and communicate more with people building sites, themes, and plugins in light of their needs. An update after the meeting says:

“The changes that Phase 2 bring to WordPress are substantial, so to avoid overwhelming users the Global Styles interface and Site Editor (managing all templates) will ship post-WordPress 5.8. This also gives more time for more theme authors, plugin developers, agencies, designers, site builders, and the like to explore and provide feedback.”

What you can expect with reasonable confidence in WordPress 5.8:

  • Improvements from Gutenberg 9.9+.
  • Introduce new blocks. (Query, Site Logo, Navigation, etc.)
  • theme.json mechanism.
  • Template Editor for Pages/Blank Template.
  • Widgets Screen and Block widgets in the Customizer.
  • Design tools: Duotone, Layout controls, padding, etc.

The post-meeting update has particulars on these points. It also includes a video of the meeting followed by a transcript. Transparency and accessibility points for that! πŸ‘

Last night I had the chance to hear a very well-prepared talk from Anne McCarthy that outlines more deeply the plan for FSE. I highly recommend Anne’s talk for Post Status readers, as it includes the overall vision as well as some details about the new blocks and the implementation of FSE.

What I took away from Anne’s presentation β€” and the continuous updates from Core in the past few weeks β€” is that they are taking the lessons from Gutenberg’s Phase One launch to heart and applying them now. (Remember the Gutenberg launch happened the same week as WordCamp US.)

Being careful and avoiding a “shock and awe” approach, however, might give the impression to casual observers that this isn’t a fundamental change for WordPress moving forward, even if the true impact isn’t felt for years. With changes on this scale, it’s important that enough people in the WordPress community are aware of what’s coming, and they need to be involved in testing on some level.

To that end, check out the latest call for testing which is particularly focused on the Query block. I got to see the potential of this block last night β€” what you will be able to do with it is impressive. πŸ’₯

A live demo along with Anne McCarthy’s talk was given at the WordPress Mega Meetup last night, and here is the full video of that event. About halfway through you can see Marcus Kazmierczak show off some nifty features and answer a variety of very good questions. πŸ“Ί

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