Many of the WordPress contribution teams have been working hard on the new WordPress editor, and the tools, services, and documentation surrounding it. Read on to find out more about this ongoing project, as well as everything else that has been happening around the WordPress community in August.
WordPress 4.9.8 is Released
WordPress 4.9.8 was released at the beginning of the month. While this was a maintenance release fixing 46 bugs, it was significant for Core development because it made a point of highlighting Gutenberg — the new WordPress editor that is currently in development (more on that below).
This release also included some important updates to the privacy tools that were added to Core earlier this year.
Active development continues on Gutenberg, the new editing experience for WordPress Core. The latest version features a number of important user experience improvements, including a new unified toolbar and support for a more focussed writing mode.
Users can test Gutenberg right now by installing the plugin, which currently has nearly 300,000 active installs. Along with that, the Gutenberg Handbook has some very useful information about how to use and develop for the new editor.
Planning Begins for the Next Global WordPress Translation Day
The Global WordPress Translation Day is a 24-hour event held online and all across the world. It is designed to bring communities together to translate WordPress into their local languages, and to help them connect with other communities doing the same thing.
There have been three Translation Days since April 2016, and the fourth edition is in the planning stages now. The Polyglots team, who organizes these events, is currently looking for input on the date, format, and content for the event and would love some feedback from the community.
While this is a minor release, incremental fixes are essential to keep WordPress running smoothly. Everyone is encouraged to update as soon as possible and to make sure that automatic updates are switched on.
In the upcoming minor release of WordPress, 4.9.8, a new section in the dashboard will feature Gutenberg, the upcoming content editor for WordPress.
While the official release of Gutenberg is scheduled for the coming months, you can already install it as a plugin to test it out right now. Additionally, a brand new demo page is now available — play around with the many features the editor has to offer, without installing it on your own site.
The Meta and Design teams worked hard to make these new designs a reality, with notable contributions from @melchoyce, @obenland, @mapk, and @kjellr. The new designs enhance the overall look of the site and provide more relevant information to those searching.
On Friday July 20, the WP-CLI team held their first hack day — a global event encouraging people to contribute to the official command line tool for WordPress.
Run by @schlessera, the event was a great success. Twelve pull requests were merged and another 13 submitted. It also included a video chat to give all contributors a space to meet each other and connect directly.
To keep everyone aware of big projects and efforts across WordPress contributor teams, I’ve reached out to each team’s listed representatives. I asked each of them to share their Top Priority (and when they hope for it to be completed), as well as their biggest Wins and Worries. Have questions? I’ve included a link to each team’s site in the headings.?
Priority: Focusing on smoothing out the processes in our community management by building up our team of volunteers and establishing what tools we need to keep things running well. ETA is ongoing.
Struggle: Our two biggest struggles at the moment are tracking what we need to get done, and making final decisions on things. There is current work on the tools available to assist with tracking progress.?
Big Win: After making a concerted effort to get more contributors on the Community Team, we now have a much larger group of volunteers working as deputies and WordCamp mentors
Priority: Following the WordCamp Europe summer update ?(and the companion post here), the team is getting Gutenberg (the new WordPress editing experience) into a strong state for the 5.0 release. Potential ETA as soon as August.
Struggle: Coordinating momentum and direction as we start seeing more contributors offering their time. Still working our way through open issues. ?The team is starting multiple bug scrubs each week to work through these more quickly and transparently.
Priority: Better on-boarding of new contributors, especially creating better documentation. ETA is end of July.
Struggle: It’s hard to identify reasonably small tasks for first-time contributors.
Big Win: The team is much more organized now which has helped clear out the design backlog, bring in new contributors, and also keep current contributors coming back. Bonus: Joshua Wold will co-lead the upcoming release.
Priority: Storing PHPCompatibilty results inside the WordPress.org API and building a UI to display those results, an endpoint to request an audit is required for this work to continue.
Struggle: Development has dramatically slowed down while team members are on leave or pulled into internal client work.
Big Win: Migration to Google Cloud Platform (GCP) from Amazon Web Services (AWS) is complete and the audit servers have all been rewritten in Go. (This allows us to be faster with greater capacity and less cost.)
Progress on the Gutenberg project, the new content creating experience coming to WordPress, has come a long way. Since the start of the project, there have been 30 releases and 12 of those happened after WordCamp US 2017. In total since then, there have been 1,764 issues opened and 1,115 closed as of WordCamp Europe. As the work on phase one moves into its final stretch, here is what you can expect.
Freeze new features in Gutenberg (the feature list can be found here).
Hosts, agencies, teachers invited to opt-in sites they have influence over.
WordPress.com has opt-in for wp-admin users. The number of sites and posts will be tracked.
Mobile app support for Gutenberg will be across iOS and Android.
4.9.x release with an invitation to install either Gutenberg or Classic Editor plugin.
WordPress.com will move to opt-out. There will be tracking to see who opts out and why.
Triage increases and bug gardening escalates to get blockers in Gutenberg down to zero.
Gutenberg phase two, Customization exploration begins by moving beyond the post.
August and beyond
All critical issues within Gutenberg are resolved.
There is full integration with Calypso and there is opt-in for users there.
A goal will be 100k+ sites having made 250k+ posts using Gutenberg.
Core merge of Gutenberg begins the 5.0 release cycle.
5.0 moves into beta releases and translations are completed.
There will be a mobile version of Gutenberg by the end of the year.
WordPress 5.0 could be as soon as August with hundreds of thousands of sites using Gutenberg before release. Learn more about Gutenberg here, take it for a test drive, install on your site, follow along on GitHub and give your feedback.
With one of the two flagship WordCamp events taking place this month, as well as some important WordPress project announcements, there’s no shortage of news. Learn more about what happened in the WordPress community in June.
Another Successful WordCamp Europe
On June 14th, WordCamp Europe kicked off three days of learning and contributions in Belgrade. Over 2,000 people attended in person, with hundreds more watching live streams of the sessions.
The WordCamp was a great success with plenty of first-time attendees and new WordPress contributors getting involved in the project and community. Recorded sessions from the 65 speakers at the event will be available on WordPress.tv in the coming weeks. In the meantime, check out the photos from the event.
Updated Roadmap for the New WordPress Content Editor
During his keynote session at WordCamp Europe, Matt Mullenweg presented an updated roadmap for Gutenberg, the new content editor coming in WordPress 5.0.
While the editor is in rapid development, with v3.1 being released this past month, the team is aiming to ship Gutenberg with WordPress Core in August, 2018. This is not set in stone — the release date may shift as development progresses — but this gives the first realistic idea of when we can expect the editor to be released.
The WordCamp Incubator program helps spread WordPress to underserved communities by providing organizing support for their first WordCamp. The first iteration of this program ran successfully in 2016 and empowered three cities to start their own WordPress communities.
This year, the Community Team is running the Incubator program again. After receiving applications from 104 communities, they have selected Montevideo, Uruguay and Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia to participate in the program. Both cities will receive direct help from experienced WordCamp organizers to run their first-ever WordCamp as a way to help their WordPress community get started.
This month saw two significant milestones in the WordPress community — the 15th anniversary of the project, and GDPR-related privacy tools coming to WordPress Core. Read on to find out more about this and everything else that happened in the WordPress community in May.
Local Communities Celebrate the 15th Anniversary of WordPress
Last Sunday, May 27, WordPress turned 15 years old. This is a noteworthy occasion for an open-source project like WordPress and one well worth celebrating. To mark the occasion, WordPress communities across the world gathered for parties and meetups in honor of the milestone.
In light of recent changes to data privacy regulations in the EU, WordPress Core shipped important updates in the v4.9.6 release, giving site owners tools to help them comply with the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). It is worth noting, however, that WordPress cannot ensure you are compliant — this is still a site owner’s responsibility.
These policies cover all sites on the WordPress.org network — including WordPress.org, WordPress.net, WordCamp.org, BuddyPress.org, bbPress.org, and other related domains and subdomains. It’s important to note that this does not mean that anything has changed in terms of data storage; rather that these documents clarify what data is stored and how it is handled.
WordPress 4.9.6 is now available. This is a privacy and maintenance release. We encourage you to update your sites to take advantage of the new privacy features.
The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) takes effect on May 25. The GDPR requires companies and site owners to be transparent about how they collect, use, and share personal data. It also gives individuals more access and choice when it comes to how their own personal data is collected, used, and shared.
It’s important to understand that while the GDPR is a European regulation, its requirements apply to all sites and online businesses that collect, store, and process personal data about EU residents no matter where the business is located.
We’re committed to supporting site owners around the world in their work to comply with this important law. As part of that effort, we’ve added a number of new privacy features in this release.
Logged-out commenters will be given a choice on whether their name, email address, and website are saved in a cookie on their browser.
Site owners have a new email-based method that they can use to confirm personal data requests. This request confirmation tool works for both export and erasure requests, and for both registered users and commenters.
95 updates were made in WordPress 4.9.6. In addition to the above, particularly of note were:
“Mine” has been added as a filter in the media library.
When viewing a plugin in the admin, it will now tell you the minimum PHP version required.
We’ve added new PHP polyfills for forwards-compatibility and proper variable validation.
TinyMCE was updated to the latest version (4.7.11).