What is WordPress 5.0?

Kate Web Development, Branding & Marketing

What is WordPress 5.0? No 2 ways about it, is a huge update in the lifespan of WordPress. There is no mincing words about it. In no other update have they implemented changes that are ‘forced’ for the sake of design evolution, which is very common practice in software design, but WordPress has stayed almost exactly the same with the TinyMCE editor for over a decade, and they want to change it, which is OK.

Features of WordPress 5.0:

TinyMCE (WordPress’s old, pre 5.0 editor) is a old, old text editing protocol that was good for when the net didn’t have any sort of word processing, it was the script suite that people thought was “magic” to manage their text at the same time as editing styles, however there are extreme constraints within it when it comes to perception, and the scope of it’s capabilities, simply put, WordPress outgrew the TinyMCE editor as being the primary means of input. Most designers know this and either code their own templates entirely from scratch or use a convenient visual editor, rarely do people do any sort of graphical editing or arrangement beyond text alignment in the TinyMCE editor, mainly because it doesn’t allow for much more. So, the TinyMCE is something that most developers tacitly accept, not lovingly, but in a very passive way, because it doesn’t get in the way too much and it can help a lot sometimes. However, Gutenberg is great as well, but I will not be developing my sites with it for purposes of security, ETC, I don’t like adopting new conventions until they’ve been bug tested quite well, and the first release of something is usually miles away from the finished product, especially with something as controversial as WordPress 5.0 and Gutenberg.

What is WordPress 5.0 mean for the future of WordPress?

Honestly, whatever you want it to be. WordPress is pushing it pretty hard but it’s very easy to disable with a plugin or a line of code, overall the reception is at best lukewarm and the best page builders don’t seem to fully integrate with Gutenberg. This causes anyone using a Visual Composer or Divi or Elementor based theme to have to disable Gutenberg basically as a first option. This is my policy going forward until WordPress ‘fixes’ Gutenberg to be more user friendly, as it’s a great idea to have a basic low level module GUI editor in WordPress, but changing things so drastically in terms of look and workflow will make absolutely no one happy, except possibly the most inexperienced user, but even then it is unwieldy as all themes from the past decade do not support this convention which is being pushed, so it’s just best to disable it for overall WordPress technical experience.

So, bottom line, What is WordPress 5.0 and it’s changes?

Bottom line is, WordPress is light-years ahead of all other CMS’s in terms of user intuitiveness (developer and casual user alike), all their base code is freely readable on the web, so you know exactly what your website is made out of. The way it manages content is revolutionary in it’s simplicity, and managing events, products, blog posts, ETC anything is still, largely best done on WordPress, but Gutenberg is a unfinished product right now. So my final verdict is YES to WordPress 5.0 and it’s updates but a hard NO to Gutenberg in it’s current incarnation. It’s very easy to turn off though, with just two or three clicks, and we’re back to the old classic, decades long WordPress experience.

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