Gutenberg, Week Two: A Working Analogy For Blocks, And Some Questions


If you're playing along with those of us who are taking the Gutenberg Challenge, this is my post for week two. This time, I'm using the text editor. I decided to go with the text editor this time because it's slightly easier. Sorry WordPress, not even you can win the WYSIWYG VS. text editor war. 🙂 As with the first post, these are my not-so-edited thoughts.

First, a working analogy for blocks

I spent some time mulling over this throughout the weekend, and I've decided to settle on the following working analogy. Part of this is because I cheated and looked at some of the code, as well as the generated markup. This will probably also work for widgets. So let's say that you have a bunch of magnets in different shapes and sizes. With widgets, your shapes and sizes are pretty uniform, and widget areas in themes are like metal surfaces you can stick them to. I'm thinking of a toy I got as a kid that was a big metal board/frame/rectangular surface, with letters that had magnets on the back so you could make words on the board but with the letters raised. Yeah, it's incredibly simplistic, but it works. With the introduction of Gutenberg, WordPress is just going to magnetize everything, and the pile of magnets now includes letters, numbers, special characters, punctuation, and every other shape under the sun. OK. So far so good. I think though that this has the potential to make web pages/other web things pretty much fluid from a design perspective, protean even, and I hope there's an upper limit somewhere. Something like, let's try to educate people about design principles, because hamburger menus inside posts, and I would like to reserve some things for the CSS/HTML realm. I know we're democratizing publishing and everything, but democracies have rules. Not sure what I think of this wp:core/freeform tag, which basically means we're using a text widget to add text to a post. I'm keeping an open mind, but it seems to me as though WordPress wants to create its own

tag, and that we've definitely stepped into overengineering territory. After all, it's just text, HTML already has tags for this, (tons of them), and if this is for possible styling later, we're just trading div soup for non-standard WordPress self-created tag soup. So yeah Gutenberg, we're not friends yet, but I'm not kicking you out either. I'm missing my meta boxes though. My screen seems so lonely without them. So I'll be heading back over to my tried and true edit post screen to put the finishing touches on this, and you can hang out down here in your little submenu, well away from my other content types for now.


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  • Sami Keijonen

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