WordPress 5.0 is finally here. After the initial release date getting pushed back several times, the Gutenberg team released an early Christmas present on December 3, 2018. You can now update your instance of WordPress to the Gutenberg editor. But before you do, you should understand a little more about it. Let’s take a look at the new editor and dissect the best new features of WordPress 5.0, Gutenberg.
There’s been a lot of buzz around WordPress’s move to blocks. Blocks are WordPress’s foray into visual editing. Now, with WordPress 5.0 installed you can create content visually within the core editor. Some core blocks included with Gutenberg are paragraph, image, gallery, list, quote, audio, cover image, file, spacer, and separators. In reality, the possibilities are truly endless as you have the ability to create your own custom blocks for use on your site.
Rearrange Elements Easily
With the advent of blocks, Gutenberg now allows you to rearrange your page elements with relative ease. Gone are the days of copying and pasting. Now, it’s as simple as drag and dropping the desired element into the new location. You can also click an up/down arrow (shown below) to move the selection one spot at a time.
Ever since the beginning of WordPress columns have been difficult to implement. You needed a third party plugin. And even those weren’t as easy as they claimed. Now, with the introduction of WordPress 5.0, you have the ability to add columns by simply adding a column block and updating the number associated with the column number in the options. You can even adjust the number on the fly to accommodate your latest thinking. From there just click the + sign in the block and add your preferred content.
With Gutenberg, depending on the type of content you’ve inserted into the post, different options will appear in the right column of the editor. For example, with a paragraph selected you can adjust line-height, line spacing, text color, and background color with simple clicks. There’s no need to create a class and style it through CSS. And when you switch your selection you will see your options update as well.
Font sizing is quite possibly the easiest. Simply select the type and adjust the number in the editor on the right. No need to create a class and adjust in the main stylesheet. Update it right where you’re working.
If you’re a WordPress user you know that buttons have been lacking for some time. With Gutenberg, WordPress has introduced a button block that allows you to add a button anywhere on a page. Once added, you have control over the color, text, and link associated with it. As a nice added feature – if you select a color combination which could be difficult for some to read, the platform will inform you through a message.
Tables are a basic element within many websites. On WordPress, they have been historically difficult to use. They actually required a 3rd party plugin for them to work. Now, with the release of Gutenberg, tables are available through a block. Once a table has been added you will be prompted to select the number of rows and columns. Note that the table block still needs some development to behave as a full-fledged feature. For example, once the initial process has been completed, you can’t update the number of rows or columns without editing the HTML. It is also difficult to style the table. The foundation for a more dynamic feature is there. It will take a few code updates, but kudos to WordPress.
WordPress has become the de facto CMS for anyone looking to create a website with relative ease. With the release of Gutenberg, WordPress has further entrenched itself as the leader in an ever-growing landscape. Sure, Gutenberg may not be the perfect CMS, but this release is more than a couple steps in the right direction. I look forward to seeing what the team will release next, and hope that they continue making my job as a web designer and developer easier in the process.