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What is Gutenberg and How Will it Improve the WordPress Experience?

In 2018, the biggest change to the WordPress user experience will take place with the introduction of Gutenberg. Named after Johannes Gutenberg, founder of the printing press; Gutenberg will modernize, streamline, and simplify the content creation experience of WordPress. While the focus right now is the editor, the entire publishing experience will be ultimately impacted by Gutenberg.

What is Gutenberg?

Gutenberg is the project name of the new editor with WordPress. Utilizing Gutenberg allows the visual presentation of the content to be directly manipulated, rather than indirectly, like meta boxes. It introduces blocks (or sections) to simplify the numerous ways of building a page (custom HTML, text formatting, shortcodes, widgets, media, and embeds). Content creators will be offered a straightforward way with this new editor to find, insert, and work with aspects on the page.

To get a feel for how Gutenberg works yourself, developers can download the plugin in a test environment. Also, this live demo gives developers a quick overview.

WordPress Experience Improvements

1. Placeholders & Templates

Numerous content blocks allow complex story packages to be built by editors when utilizing Gutenberg. The editorial process easily moves forward with placeholder blocks that indicate the exact location of where an item needs to go. The content blocks include: headline, deck, pull quote, video, embed, and gallery.

2. Shared Editing

When working on a post in WordPress prior to the Gutenberg update, writers are prevented from overwriting one another with the post locking feature. Following the implementation of Gutenberg, multiple people may work on one draft without disturbing each other with the use of block level locking.

With the flexibility of content blocks in WordPress, a block can be utilized for internal notes. This allows editors to read and reply to comments throughout a post while editing.

3. Easily Search for Content Blocks

Difficulty finding shortcodes is a common complaint made by editors. Editors will be able to easily search for content blocks, whether it is by a Vimeo embed, Twitter embeds, or a custom template for the implementation of Gutenberg. This allows for a simpler discovery of embed.

Content blocks could be created for media like galleries, unique needs, or for content type recipes by an agency or developer. Better reuse of code across an organizations team may also be facilitated by this.

4. Personalization of Content

Delivery of content could potentially be based on user attributes when blocks are used for page content. For example, when visiting a media site, a block consisting of related content recommendations may be shown to subscribers; or, a “subscribe” to action may appear for new visitors.

5. Standard Page Building

A standard approach to page building will come as the focus of Gutenberg moves toward site creation and away from the editor. This standard approach could make data and content more readily transferable across the different page building methods.

Gutenberg Integration

Integration of Gutenberg into WordPress 5.0 has a tentative date of April 2018 but is already available as a plugin.

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