2009 I was invited to NASA first Launch TweetUp for STS 129 with ca 150 other Tweeple. We learned about the shuttle lunch, it’s mission, talked to engineers, astronauts, and administrators of NASA, and shared it with our followers on Twitter. It was certainly one of the most interesting weekends in my life.
In 2009, I also started my personal WordPress journey, testing and prodding searching for a CMS for a nonprofit internet service provider. I started on an incredible journey into web development, community building and open-source.
Now in 2023, those two life threads come together. After three years building up to it, NASA launched their new website built with WordPress. Members of the Website Modernization were invited to give WordCamp US participants a sneak preview and discussed the journey to get there. If you haven’t watched them yet, there were great presentations on the work. What a great way to showcase WordPress! WordPress and I have come a long way together.
Other block editor and builder news are below. Enjoy!
Developing Gutenberg and WordPress
WordPress 6.4 Beta 1 was released, and is ready for testing. There are two calls for testing, you can follow:
- Help Test WordPress 6.4
- FSE Program Testing Call #26: Final touches
- Damon Cook wrote Beta Testing WordPress with Local Blueprints
Sarah Gooding also reported on the release for the WPTavern: WordPress 6.4 Beta 1 Released, with a short summary of all the great new features that will come to a WordPress instance near you.
In his Design Share: Sep 11-Sep 22, Joen Asmussen highlighted the fabulous work of the WordPress design team:
- A second iteration for the WordPress Pattern Directory, features a refined submission flow and a new “Pattern Bundle” feature. You can navigate through a clickable prototype on Figma.
- Ongoing work in Pagination Design
- An Enterprise Notice on the WordPress site so link to a page about the “State of Enterprise for WordPress” guide.
- More exploration on organizing the Command Palette displays.
- A polished modal on Mobile
Comment or contribute.
Sarah Norris, Editor Tech co-lead for WordPress 6.4, also was the release lead of Gutenberg 16.7 and published the release post to let you know What’s new in Gutenberg 16.7? (27 September). She highlighted a ton of features:
- Font Management with the Font Library
- Import/Export of Patterns
- Explore New Pattern Filtering
- Naming Group Blocks in the Editor
- “My Patterns” Category Reinstated in Post Editor Inserter
- Simplified Lightbox Functionality for Images
- Background Image Control Added to Group Block
- New Social Link Icon for X
Plugins, Themes, and Tools for #nocode site builders and owners
Damon Cook announced on X (former Twitter) : “I’ve helped write #WordPress themes that went on to have 80,000+ installs, but never under my own name and always under the guise of an agency I was working for. Today, I’ve finally contributed a theme on .org with sole attribution.” Congratulations to Damon Gook for getting his first theme into the repository. The Theme is a block theme and called Bounds. “This theme is meant for slide decks. Use it for your next presentation. The default experience includes scroll snapping on large screens. There is also a style variation for a horizontal scroll snapping.” Cook wrote.
Munir Kamal announced a new feature for the almost evergreen EditorsKit plugin: adding and managing Block Styles. It’s a great example of how the WordPress Site editor can be used as a modern Design Tool for all kinds of use cases. Download the EditorsKit from the WordPress repository.
Tarun Vijwani published the release notes for the WooCommerce Blocks 11.2 release and highlighted blockified order confirmation, product collection patterns, the new Store API order endpoints and more.
Theme Development for Full Site Editing and Blocks
Sarah Gooding recounts the story of Mike McAllister’s woes of being a trailblazer. Ollie Theme Faces Pushback from WordPress Theme Review Team. Adding onboarding setting screens to his newest block theme, bump up against the Theme directory’s guidelines as plugin territory. People agree that there needs onboarding solutions for new WordPress users after they log in into their freshly installed WordPress instance.
The team at Extendify also has a launch solution it offers to the hosting companies as a stand-alone product also built with Gutenberg components on top of WordPress.
James Koussertari of Gutenberg Market updated his Comprehensive Guide to Building WordPress Block Themes. “Now inline with the latest version of WordPress (I think)” he tweeted on X.
In their September Friday Hangout, Webdev Studios folks, Brad Williams, Victor M Ramirez, Raquel Manriquez and Alfredo Navas, talked about full site editing and WordCamps. “FSE is an exciting advancement in website development that makes it easier than ever for anyone to create a professional-looking website, regardless of their technical skills.” They wrote in the description. They also mentioned their WDS WordPress Site Editor (FSE) Starter Block Theme, that is available on GitHub.
Building Blocks and Tools for the Block editor.
Mary Baum published an introduction to The HTML API: process your tags, not your pain on the WordPress Developer blog: “All by itself, the HTML Tag processor is better than regular expressions. It’s convenient, reliable, fast—and You. Can. Read. It. This article shows you in two examples how to get started using the HTML Tag processor.” It also has a great list of resources for those who need to dive much, much deeper.
Ryan Welcher posted another episode of his Block Cook Book recipes on YouTube: The Interactivity API, and how to use the @wordpress/create-block-interactive-template template to scaffold a block that uses it.
Questions? Suggestions? Ideas? Don’t hesitate to send them via email or send me a message on WordPress Slack or Twitter @bph.