10 Comments

  1. David McCan

    Nice summary and good reporting. Thanks.

    Perhaps Tom Nowell’s idea will pan out? Otherwise, I think there is a good argument to be made for a slower approach, along the lines suggested by Yoast, of only replacing the classic editor with the Gutenberg editor and not trying to shoot the moon on the first release. Such would allow a release sooner and get feedback / real-world usage of blocks for editing. It seems like we have been, as regards metaboxes, at the same place that we were back in the summer.

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  2. Rick Gregory

    “What some people have called as the pragmatic approach is not concomitant with the design direction this project has had from the start….

    Translation: No. We don’t want to.

    #sigh. I think the team needs to consider the next 5+ years, not just the next 1-2. If it takes, say, 2 or even 3 years to get the full vision implemented then in we end up at the same point but with far less disruption to the community of people who use WP to deliver real solutions to our clients and to those clients. I’m still worried that they don’t really understand how prevalent metabox use is and that while we’ll have a solution that works for creating new sites with them, we will see breakage in existing sites. Worse, for decision-making in the near and medium term is that I can’t be sure we’ll have backward compatibility with existing solutions which makes it hard to plan for the next 3-6 months.

    Collaborators on the project have grown impatient with the community for not grasping the vision, but communication is scattered across various blogs, comments, Slack channels, and GitHub discussions.

    It’s the team’s responsibility to communicate that vision out and to do so clearly. If we aren’t ‘grasping the vision’ the team can blame the community… or consider their communications.

    I love the idea of Mor10 to have a roadmap but again, why does it take someone from outside the team to create a ticket that asks the team to *deliver a freaking roadmap*? That’s a basic communication tool.

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    • M

      I think that Automattic is both good and not that good for Gutenberg.

      It’s good because it provides the ressources, developers and passion around this project. Things we should be thankful about.

      And less good, because the developers being from Automattic are somewhat biased regarding the importance of MetaBoxes. They do understand they are important but I feel like they fail to realize just how vital they became in WordPress. At Automattic, WordPress.com is a blogging platform and metaboxes are dispensable, but WordPress (SelfHosted) is mainly used as a CMS and as such, it can’t live without MetaBoxes.

      I’m still worried that they don’t really understand how prevalent metabox use is

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  3. Robert

    Collaborators on the project have grown impatient with the community for not grasping the vision

    Yes, we who develop sites which make extensive use of meta data are too thick to see the greatness of Gutenberg and to understand why a crucial feature in CMS type sites like post meta is suddenly “locking the evolution” of WP. Please, core devs, enlighten us.

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  4. Andreas Nurbo

    the design direction this project has had from the start — heading towards full site customization

    So the goal of the Gutenberg project is to replace the whole admin and swallow up the Customizer as well?

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    • Martin

      That is what I have noticed. WP seems to be trying to move the whole admin into the customizer. I remember just a few years ago WP wanted theme authors to start using the customizer instead of custom option pages; thought this is what the customizer was to be used for…active theme options/settings. Apparently not anymore, now they want everything crammed into it.

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  5. Dovy

    So… we have this massive revamp of the editor screen (not a bad thing), but we’re willing to make breaking changes for themes/plugins. If that’s the new approach of WordPress, can we PLEASE update the minimum PHP version then? I’d be so happy to accept this breaking change, if that one is forced for WP 5.0. ;)

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    • Matt

      Heck yeah. If breaking changes are the new norm then I’d accept Gutenberg and all it’s warts if the minimum required PHP version was updated to v7.0 for v5 of WP. If you don’t want to use Gutenberg and/or run an older version of PHP even as recent as v5.6 then you can just stay on WP v4.9 like so many are already planning to do anyhow.

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  6. Graham Armfield

    I wanted to echo the comments of many, who like myself have built WordPress sites for clients large and small over the last few years. I have serious concerns, and like Morten has pointed out – there is no one suitable place to express them.

    I have embraced meta-boxes big time right from the start, as they offered an extremely flexible way of storing extra information relevant to a page or post, or any custom post type that I cared to define.

    Some of the information in the meta boxes will ultimately appear on screen when someone visits a site, but it may appear in different ways depending on the context. Other meta data can just be used for deciding which posts to show in a given WP_query, or even for sorting too – although I know that’s perhaps not the most efficient use. But WP_query has params to support that – so it’s obviously not just me…

    My sense of foreboding and concern comes from what happens when WP version 5 with Gutenberg is released. From what I’ve gleaned from the diverse sources of information and gossip, I wouldn’t be surprised if pretty much all the sites I’ve built will either break or stop being maintainable, without some serious amount of redevelopment work.

    This will create a lot of pain for the small businesses and charities I’ve built sites for. Even though I no longer have them as clients any more, they will probably approach me to express their frustration. Even more so when they hear that substantial rework of their site may be required – they, and I, will wonder just who is supposed to pay for that.

    I want to think that the Gutenberg team will deliver a great editor when it’s all finished, and I’m sure it will make building new sites easier. But please, don’t overlook all the existing WP sites.

    Maybe we need a central repository where people can share all the different ways they use meta-data, and where the Gutenberg team can understand how they need to accommodate those different ways.

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    • Matt

      Since nearly everyone will likely be in the same boat if v5 launches without proper metabox support, it could be an opportunity for an maintenance upsell. It won’t matter whether they’re a charity, non-profit, etc or not. WP.Org will have made the choice for everyone which while not very democratic is the way things are heading lately.

      Anyone in the industry that they go to (even if they don’t necessarily come back / choose to work with you again) will then have the choice to eat the cost of the work performed (in return for example, a maintenance contract) or a simple quote of the job cost.

      They’ll also have the option to leave the WordPress platform, etc if the scope of the work is comparable than what it might cost to redo the site another way or with another platform.

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