Gutenberg 13.0 Previews WordPress 6.0 Improvements

WordPress released Gutenberg version 13.0 which includes a number of improvements that bring it several big steps closer to becoming an easy-to-use website builder.

This update is an important milestone for Gutenberg as the features of this plugin will be included in the core of WordPress 6.0, which is currently scheduled for release on May 24, 2022 and is a huge deal in the world of publishing .

WordPress Gutenberg Editor

Gutenberg is a visual style website builder designed to make it easier for publishers to build websites.

It’s called visual to describe the process of building a site using a drag and drop or point and click interface on a visual canvas that can be used to visualize what it will look like when you design it.

Instead of manipulating the code, with this style of website building the publisher is manipulating web page elements such as the header or footer. Those web page elements are called blocks.

It is a method of building websites that have existed for a long time in various forms, at least since the late 1990s with the introduction of Macromedia’s (now Adobe) Dreamweaver website building software.

At the time, this style of creating web pages was commonly referred to as the What You See is What You Get (WYSIWYG) interface.

WordPress plugins like Divi and non-WordPress SaaS website building platforms have helped publishers build sites with a visual website builder interface for years.

Gutenberg Visual Website Builder is the WordPress version of the interface that makes building websites easy.

The advantage of Gutenberg is that it is itself a part of the WordPress core, which (in theory) helps websites built with Gutenberg perform faster than using third-party plugins.

Gutenberg 13.0 offers a number of improvements that will help make WordPress 6.0 a significant step forward for the publishing world and that’s pretty exciting.

Gutenberg Block

Gutenberg’s design interface is described using the term block. For design purposes, a web page is divided into sections called blocks.

The top part known as the top is a block. The navigation menu is a block. And the way the various widgets go is also a block.

Each block can be moved around and manipulated to create a web page design.

So, the block at the top of the page where the featured image goes can be individually styled with a dot and clicked easily. Simply click on the block to which you want to add text or background image and then choose from a contextual menu to do what you want to do.

Select text in a block

An innovative improvement introduced in Gutenberg 13.0 (and in WordPress 6.0) is the ability to select text in multiple blocks. This is important because blocks exist as a way to make a web page look like and text is something that is left inside those blocks.

This new feature gives a publisher more freedom to create a web page without (seemingly) arbitrary rules such as not being able to select text across multiple blocks.

page level pattern

It’s a breakthrough feature that moves Gutenberg closer to being an easy-to-use website builder.

The Patterns feature was introduced in Gutenberg version 7.8 in 2020 as an API for developers to create layout patterns for sections of a page.

The latest version of the Patterns feature enables page templates that can be selected as the starting point for creating web page layouts.

So instead of starting a web page from scratch, a publisher can start with a pre-configured pattern for the entire page and then customize the page from there.

This is a feature that is already common in many existing WordPress page builders as well as SaaS website builders. So this is a sure step for WordPress to finally have this feature.

Stack or Row Layout Manipulation

Continuing with the goal of making WordPress easier to design, the new version of Gutenberg allows selected blocks to be arranged as a layout of blocks or rows.

And from there a publisher can use the contextual menu to further manipulate the design.

Here is a video showing how it works:

The WordPress announcement described it:

“Blocks are now easily grouped into either a stack layout or a row layout with a single click.

In Gutenberg 13.0, selecting multiple blocks at once brings up stack and row variations of group blocks in the toolbar.”

block border control

This is a refinement of an already existing feature with a new BorderControl component.

A contextual menu provides a way to control the borders around the block to change the style, color, and width.

Use select image in cover block button

A cover block is a special block that can be used to create the hero image section at the top of the page. The background of the block can be a color, an image or a video.

Update adds a button to the cover block so that it can quickly use the featured image for the web page.

It sounds like a small thing but it is actually an important functionality.

WordPress announcement excited:

“With the updated cover block, the featured image of the post is no longer a consideration – it is an integral part of the post. Simply click the “Use Featured Image” button, and that’s it!

Gutenberg 13.0 has many more cumulative improvements that together contribute to making it a worthwhile update to the WordPress block editor that will eventually make it into the next version of WordPress, version 6.0.


Read Official WordPress Announcement

What’s new in Gutenberg 13.0?

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