WordPress 5.8 “Tatum” is now available, and it is a significant update. WP 5.8 introduces a new approach to constructing websites by delivering the initial features within the larger project known as Full Site Editing.
Aside From Full Site Editing, WordPress 5.8 Delivers A Slew Of New Features And Improvements To The CMS.
WordPress users who do not utilize the Gutenberg plugin will benefit from nine Gutenberg versions, including new features and improvements (for a dive deep into each release, see Gutenberg 9.9, 10.0, 10.1, 10.2, 10.3, 10.4, 10.5, 10.6, 10.7).
WebP format support is an important new feature for consumers concerned about the performance of their websites.
Developers will appreciate removing Internet Explorer 11 from the list of supported browsers, the new theme. The JSON-based block configuration and styling mechanism, the improved block registration system based on block.json, and the numerous API improvements coming with the second WordPress release of 2021.
So get ready for a long list of new features and updates that will prepare the way for the introduction of new powerful site-building tools in the coming months.
WordPress 5.8 Now Has Full Site Editing Capabilities.
The goal of Full Site Editing is to provide a set of tools and capabilities that allow WordPress users to use blocks to create an entire website. We’ll see several blocks available to design any element on the page using Full Site Editing, including navigation menus, site branding, sidebar widgets, templates, and much more.
Even if WordPress 5.8 adds a few capabilities under the Full Site Editing (FSE) umbrella, don’t anticipate a fully functional visual site builder. FSE is still a work in progress, and WordPress 5.8 marks the start of a public beta period. According to Josepha Haden Chomphosy, complete site editing is a group of initiatives that together represent a significant change, maybe too much for a single release.
The most crucial point is that it isn’t being offered as the entire default experience for users. One of the most common complaints from the Phase One merge process was that our extenders (agencies, theme authors, plugin developers, site builders, and so on) didn’t have enough time to prepare for the anticipated changes.
With that in mind, the merging process will not be a one-way street. The focus is currently on an open public beta within WordPress 5.8 rather than a complete and nuanced user experience.
As a result, WordPress 5.8 does not yet provide a perfect and complete FSE experience. Instead, starting with version 5.8, new features will be added and developed over time. For the same reason, we shouldn’t expect WordPress 5.8 to impact the way we build websites significantly.
Let’s Look At Several FSE Features That Have Been Incorporated Into Core With WordPress 5.8.
1. Editing Mode for Templates
2. Theme Building Blocks
The Query Loop Block is number three.
Persistent List Is The Fourth Item On The List. View In The Template Editing Mode Of The Post Editor
Template Editing Mode allows you to use blocks to construct post/page templates. It’s a terrific technique to simplify site creation by allowing people to access various site editing tools outside the site editor interface while learning how to work with blocks. This is also useful for users who don’t use block-based themes but want to create and edit templates directly from the block editor’s interface.
Enable Template Editing Mode in the Settings sidebar to create a new template. Users can now alter editing modes using a new Template panel (see the Gutenberg 10.5 release note).
You Can Create A New Template Or Change An Existing One From The Template Panel.
Click New to start a new template. Then, type a template name in the modal and click Create, and you’re good to go.
You can create your templates in Template Editing Mode using all of the accessible blocks, including FSE blocks like Site Title, Site Tagline, Login/out, and many others.
Switch back to Post Editing mode and save the template independently from the post/page content if you’re satisfied with your changes, as illustrated in the image below:
Templates are saved in your WordPress database as wp template custom post types. This not only allows you to edit templates directly from the editor interface, but it also allows you to import and export them at will. A template can also be used on several websites (at the time of this writing, this feature is only available if you activate the Gutenberg plugin).
As stated in this call for testing and this experiment by Justin Tadlock, Template Editing Mode is still a touch unstable at the time of this writing.
Carolina Nymark Explains:
All themes had template editing enabled at first. Theme designers expressed fears that they wouldn’t adopt all of their vintage themes to match this new capability. The release team and editor team decided to make the template editing opt-in for classic themes as a last-minute tweak.
Developers Should Now Add Theme Support To Opt-In Classic Themes:
Blocks Of Themes
As previously stated, FSE is not a single feature but rather a comprehensive set of site-building tools that aren’t limited to the site editor. For instance, Template Editing Mode is an example of this. But, in addition to Template Editing, WordPress 5.8 includes several theme blocks that can display data dynamically retrieved from the database. Some of these blocks can also be utilized outside the FSE framework (see bug #28744).
Template tag functionality is added to classic themes using Theme Blocks, which can be used in the same way as standard blocks. You can, for example, include post tags or the main picture of a post wherever in the post content or structure. Type /post in the block placeholder to get a sense of the number of theme blocks added to the core with WordPress 5.8:
The Login/out block, which gives login and logout links, is a valuable theme block with WordPress 5.8. It can display the login form instead of a link if desired.
See the Github issue “Enabling Full Site Editor blocks in classic themes” for a closer look at FSE blocks.
The Block Of The Query Loop
How many times have you needed to present a customized list of blog articles or custom post types? Consider items, events, and real estate… Of course, there are many plugins available for this, but grappling with the WordPress Loop typically necessitates the use of programming skills to generate highly specialized queries.
Site owners and admins may now construct lists of posts and CPTs without writing sophisticated code or paying a developer, at least in the most frequent use cases, thanks to introducing the Query Loop block in WordPress Core.
So, What Is The Purpose Of The Query Loop Block?
In a nutshell, it performs the same functions as the WordPress Loop but in the block editor’s visual environment.
The Query Loop block runs a query over the WordPress database based on the user’s preferences, loops through each obtained post, and shows the results on the page.
This block has now evolved into its current structure, which comprises two nested blocks: the Query and Post Template blocks.
The Query Loop Block, As An Advanced Feature, Necessitates Some Setups.
To begin, select from a variety of block designs in the Carousel and Grid views. Click Choose after choosing your pattern, and the Query Loop block will generate your list of posts.
You’ll see a list of four Core block options if you click on Start blank: Title & Date; Title & Excerpt; Title, Date & Excerpt; and Image, Date & Title (see Offering Patterns on Block setup).
Selecting the Query Loop block after it’s in place will bring up the block settings sidebar, where you can design your query. You can either customize the query arguments or inherit the query from the URL: the type of articles to include in the List, the display order, and whether or not sticky posts should be included.
You Can Also Choose From A Variety Of Filters, Such As Categories, Authors, And Keywords.
In addition, the block toolbar has a Display settings option that allows you to choose the number of items per page, the offset, and the maximum number of pages to display.
However, a quick look at the WP Query class options reveals that the level of customization allowed with the code is significantly greater than with the Query Loop block.
Nonetheless, it is a vital and versatile tool that lends itself to a wide range of applications, and we may expect more improvements in the future.
The Post Editor’s Persistent List View
The Persistent List View is another FSE feature that has been added to the Post Editor. The ListView was presented in a popover before WordPress 5.8 (and Gutenberg 10.7). The List would vanish if the focus were moved outside the popover.
On the other hand, the Site Editor displayed the ListView in a sidebar that included the whole block tree.
The ListView is now available in a Post Editor position with WordPress 5.8, allowing users to browse the block tree more quickly and precisely.
Customizer’s Block-Based Widgets Editor And Block Widgets
The block-based widgets editor is a large project to bring the block editor’s interface to classic-theme widgets.
The vast majority of people who still use traditional themes will benefit significantly from the new widgets editor. Simultaneously, it allows them to familiarise themselves with the block interface before it becomes the default for all WordPress users.
Block-based widgets, as Anne McCarty points out, have various advantages, including the following:
• You may now use columns, separators, spacers, and other design blocks to construct layouts in sidebars, headers, and footers.
• Many shortcode-based widgets are now available as blocks, easing the editing experience.
• Widgets now enable rich text editing by default, eliminating the need for users to add custom code or incorporate a third-party HTML editor using a plugin.
Andrei Draganescu also highlights the benefits of being able to edit widgets through a block-based interface.