“Confusion about identity”
This week’s WordPress news – Covering The Week Commencing 16th November 2020
With Nathan Wrigley, Paul Lacey (Dickiebirds Studio), Jan Kock (WP Mastery) and Bernhard Gronau (@quasel)
You can find the Newsletter here which has all the links mentioned in this episode:
We focus on the following stories:
WordPress 5.6 Release Candidate
“The final release of 2020 continues the annual tradition of a new default theme that is custom built to showcase the new features and functionality of the software. Continued progress on the block editor is especially clear in this release, which brings more blocks to more places, and fewer clicks to implement your layouts.”
Gutenberg 9.4 Introduces Button Width Selector and Typography Controls for List Block
“Gutenberg 9.4.0 was released this week with many small improvements to existing features, while work on full site editing continues. This release will not be included in the upcoming WordPress 5.6 release but those who are using the Gutenberg plugin will have access to the improvements right away.”
The WP Builds Black Friday Deals Page
Over 150 deals for Black Friday
WordPress.com Gives Conservative Treehouse the Boot, Citing TOS Violations
“The Conservative Treehouse, a political publication hosted on WordPress.com for the past 10 years, is moving to a new host after receiving a notice from Automattic regarding violations of its Terms of Service. The site’s owner, previously identified as Florida resident Mark Bradman, claims to have a 500,000 – 1,000,000 unique readers per day. He has been ordered to find a new hosting provider and migrate the site away from WordPress.com by December 2, 2020…”
Should WordPress Notify Users of Plugin Ownership Changes?
“WordPress should have some mechanism for notifying users of changes of ownership. The more transparency that exists in the ecosystem, the healthier it is for all…”
Proposal to Create an Expanded View or Overlay for the Block Patterns Inserter
“Viewing a lot of patterns in the small inserter panel does not work too well,” he [Paal Joachim Romdahl] wrote in the GitHub ticket. “It gets tiring needing to scroll one pattern at a time. Having a larger view will help the user to compare multiple patterns at once.”
Better User Interface and User Experience
“In this update, we’re bringing block editing to all new heights by drastically improving our user interface and user experience (UI/UX).”
Introducing the Simplest Header Footer Builder with Astra!
“The drag and drop Header and Footer Builder is coming soon to Astra! We are thrilled to introduce the most awaited drag and drop Header and Footer Builder. It opens all-new design possibilities and gives you the freedom to customize navigation of your website with a theme.”
AI Generated Paintings
AI created artwork. The world is surely about to come to an end!
The WP Builds podcast is brought to you this week by…
The home of Managed WordPress hosting that includes free domain, SSL, and 24/7 support. Bundle that with the Hub by GoDaddy Pro to unlock more free benefits to manage multiple sites in one place, invoice clients, and get 30% off new purchases! Find out more at go.me/wpbuilds.
The WP Builds Deals Page
It’s like Black Friday, but everyday of the year! Search and Filter WordPress Deals! Check out the deals now…
Transcript (if available)
These transcripts are created using software, so apologies if there are errors in them.
This Week in WordPress - Confusion about identity - #139
Nathan Wrigley: [00:00:00] This weekend, WordPress episode number 139. Coming up next. This episode is entitled confusion about identity. I'm joined as always by Paul Lacey. But this week, our special guests are young cock and burn at Grinnell. There's a lot to talk about this week. We get stuck into a website that's been kicked off wp.com.
We also talk about the new. Features in Guttenberg 9.4, we get into a subject about whether or not plugin developers or to notify users if they have sold the plugin and there's a change of ownership. And also we talk about Astro's new header and footer builder. It's all coming up next on this week in WordPress.
This weekend, WordPress is brought to you this week by AB split test. Do you want to set up your AB split tests in record time? Like in a couple of minutes, use your existing pages and test anything against anything else. Buttons, images, headers, rows, anything. And the best part is it works with element or Beaver builder and the WordPress block editor.
Check it out and get a free [email protected].
Paul Lacey: [00:01:14] Hello? Hello.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:01:15] WP builds here once more? This is we've retitled. it's no longer called . Even though I have failed this. Yeah, it's nice. We can WordPress. And it's yet another of the tiny little jobs in a week, which never gets done. I'm joined this week by Bernard Greeno. Who's over there, young cock who's down there.
And Paul Lacey who's over the, over there. I've got to try and remember that we're repurposing this content into audio. So I've got to stop giving visual cues. So saying things like watch and he's over. There is no good, but very briefly. If that's all right with you three, would you mind introducing yourselves one at a time?
So we'll start with Bernard. How are you doing?
Bernhard Gronau: [00:01:57] Oh, wow. Was the lifetime, the first one, I had been out with thoughts, community support and a little bit of development and making the pots Beaver builder and on. then I have my own little company doing a little bit of hot chocolate business and of course it'll be effective allotment.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:02:13] I think that's such a great tangential business. it's a hot chocolate. What about you Yan? Tell us about yourself.
Jan Koch: [00:02:20] Hey, I'm John. I'm the host of DWP agency summit, which was one of the leading conferences in the WordPress space.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:02:26] That's nice. Thank you so much. And finally, Paul,
Paul Lacey: [00:02:30] hello, you Paul here from JJ.
I guess we're a design focused workforce agency in the UK.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:02:37] Thank you very much. Although you have clients all over the places I learned this week. That's what you told me. You had various calls with people all over the place. Very nice. Yeah. We have a website it's WP builds.com. You can go over there and find a whole ton of WordPress related content.
We produce this episode, we throw out a news article, which looks like this. This is episode number 199. You can find that by going. To the, let me just grab it. You go to the archive section on the WP Bill's menu and you click on this week in WordPress video, you'll be able to find the video version of this, but we'll repurpose that as a podcast in audio form.
And if you want to see the actual newsletters, you can click on this week in WordPress newsletter, and you've got taken over to this archive and basically just click the one at the top, which in this case, it's number 103. 39 on the WP builds.com website. We've got a big fat banner at the top, which is illustrating the fact that black Friday is around the corner.
You may not have noticed, the black Friday was around the corner. Your inbox is probably entirely clear. nothing promotional has arrived over the last week or so, but we're trying to help people out over at WP bills. So clicking around all over the place, we have this page. WP builds.com forward slash black.
I'd like to just reach out to these people and say, thank you for helping us sponsor this page. We've got a key press media UI manager. We've got WP feedback, pro WP Ultimo, AB split test, and the events calendar, or very kind sponsors of that page. So yeah. Thanks to them. But the reason that we're on here today is to talk about episode number 139.
And what we're doing these days is we're going to deep dive a little bit deeper into four or five, six, seven pieces each week, rather than trying to cover everything. And Paul and I are going to place ourselves on a phone call or something on a Friday and discuss the ones which we think probably justify surfacing to the top.
And so that's what we've done this week. So Paul. Shall I just hand it right over to you to kick us off.
Paul Lacey: [00:04:43] Yup, sure. Oh, by the way, I have to say, I really enjoyed the find my versus no FOMO episode that you and David Walmsley did, that you published last week.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:04:53] Thank you life. I have no memory of it.
I'm sure it was dreadful, but
Paul Lacey: [00:04:57] thanks really connected. Cause Yeah much like some of the arguments, your presents. And I was like genuinely addicted to buying stuff, like January, like a problem, like a gamble or an alcoholic addiction. And it was just good to listen to it and think, yeah. Have made some progress.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:05:19] all I'm going to say. Then he's head over to WP bells.com forward slash black to undo all of that progress. and yeah. Anyway, the, around the corner there is Richard. John is, should we. Should we just dock into this quickly? Yeah, I don't mean this particular page. I've just mean if anybody's got their sights on anything.
So I've already bought a couple of things, but not in the WordPress space. I'm addicted to Google hardware. So I've bought, I've bought a Google TV dongle, which are just plugged in about half an hour ago and it's great. and also I bought a Google nest wifi, which you can actually see just there.
That's the extender thing where you can dock them around all over the house. And it's like a mesh network, but I don't, I haven't yet aligned myself with WordPress stuff. What about you Bernard? You got your sights on anything?
Bernhard Gronau: [00:06:08] Not really currently, at least. most of the stuff I either own or, there are two plugins.
I tend to renew in the way, like canceling and buying a new, because I don't get it. Why they often deals for new customers. And the existing customers, you pay the full price. you haven't been paid because they give you a renewal stuff, but, almost all the others. Yeah. You get great Fridays. Or if it's black in LA, which I use only on one or two sites where it's not an issue to just change the license number, I go and buy it again.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:06:44] Sorry, that's a really interesting thought. I actually, discovered that this morning, I won't name the plugin, but I discovered that I could buy it more cheaply by canceling the license that I bought this time. Last year, it was only $10, but it did make me think, but $10, right? Why not save $10 if it can be done that way.
Bernhard Gronau: [00:07:03] that's fun. What are that?
Nathan Wrigley: [00:07:05] Yeah, Paul, anything,
Paul Lacey: [00:07:08] this year I've not got a shopping list of WordPress related things at all. the things that I was quite excited about were X-Box games. So there was some really good deals for me on X-Box that will set me up for a whole year that I've bought.
So Assassin's creed games and far cry and stuff like that. I'm really looking at. So I've started playing some of those, in terms of the WordPress things, But I dunno if it's just, a lot of us that just we've done it so many years into right now with WordPress and SAS tools that we're almost bought out, but, there's a couple.
but look interesting. I'm hoping that give WP do a deal. I know it's not on your page yet.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:07:45] I haven't seen one come through from them. So
Paul Lacey: [00:07:47] maybe okay. A few clients who want it. And that's always one that I always get the client to go and buy it. And, I've said, just hold out. They might have a deal, coming soon.
but really there's not too much that. I've got, I've definitely not got a list that I'm trying to drill down and figure out, I forgot budget of this much. Which one should we get? Not at all. I think if anyone's into, doing a lot of stuff with commerce, I think that, if would be a good deal because that prices went up like a year ago or so, and now the deal is for percent off.
You'd have to check what the actual terms of that deal, or if it's 30% off just for one year or 5%, just the initial purchase or something. But, the world of e-commerce isn't cheap anymore. we're commerce deals would be something that if I was internet, I would be looking at probably quite closely, but not a lot of other things.
let's be honest.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:08:39] I wonder if the sort of excitement about it is fading a little bit. Let's find out from Yan, you excited about anything.
Jan Koch: [00:08:45] No, not really. I have one year that I bought, which is a Swift performance pro. They had some really nice discounts. I think the five site license was reduced from 100 to $30 or something for the first year.
that was a good one. But other than that, I'm not looking at anything. Specifically. I also don't see the need to buy anything really.
Paul Lacey: [00:09:07] So
Nathan Wrigley: [00:09:08] they look like they're 70% off, this year. Yeah.
Jan Koch: [00:09:11] Yeah. They have this tiered structure and I was able to get on the
Paul Lacey: [00:09:15] highest tier.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:09:16] Yeah. Okay. interesting stuff.
There we go. So a few comments just dropping in. We'll just deal with those. Chris user's, he's got his eye on 15 to 20 different things, so that's quite a lot, isn't it? and then a follow up comment from him to be fair. 50% of those will be rebuilt. Yeah. I've got a few of those and I'm thinking, looking carefully, I've got this.
I mentioned it last week. I think I've got this SAS app called track. My subs. Which when I buy a subscription to something, I lock it in and then it gives me a reminder, whatever the subscription terms are, you set that up and quite a few have popped up in the recent, in the, in, I don't know, the last 48 hours or so.
So I've got to go and look at that a little bit more. Okay. Hello to everybody. That's mentioned themselves in the comments. Really appreciate you taking the time out to come and spend some time with us. It's really nice. We're going to get stuck in Paul. Do you want to do your, WooCommerce?
Sorry, not WooCommerce WordPress core stuff. I don't think we've got a page for that necessarily, but, I'll just hand it over to you. Cause it was a few things cropped up
Paul Lacey: [00:10:12] in core. There's a couple of things in core. One of them, we probably thought we might explore a little bit more, but some of the, so the ones that.
Or just general core news is we've got WordPress 5.6 release candidate is out as thing, or it's almost out. we'd probably, I don't know you and I talked about this, Nathan. We were like, what's in 5.6 and we couldn't actually find anywhere.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:10:36] It wasn't a lot.
Paul Lacey: [00:10:37] So we're probably going to wait until the real 5.6 comes out too.
So the read, the list helps to the podcast, the amazing things that are in there.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:10:48] But I think it's December the fifth, I could, six, I could be wrong about that, but I think that's the date.
Paul Lacey: [00:10:54] Got it. Okay. So that's when it's like the real versions coming out. Yeah. Yeah. there is a, an interest, an interesting one, that will affect some people for sure.
which is what versus. To combine it's long neglected theme previewer we've started content. So if you've ever bought a theme of something like theme, forest stores, one of those sort of places, you probably buy it and then you install it and it looks nothing. Like you saw it in the theme shop until you install it in the content.
And then it looks a bit like the one that you saw on the shelf. the WordPress repo from all that I understand has never really had that facility. You install a theme and then you've just got sample page and hello world. And that's it's never really been on the priority list for one person, I think, to do anything too much about that.
But it's coming back to that list of kind of stuff that would be cool to do. And it seems that they've agreed to make it. yeah. Themes that are in the repo can have a bunch of demo content in there. And one of the reasons they feel it's relevant now is because the block editor.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:11:57] yeah,
Paul Lacey: [00:11:58] yeah. It just gives me, especially if the controls and settings are coming out of themes, customizers and into blocks and stuff like that, then they decided whoever they is that it's a good time to bring that in so that when you install a theme, now that it's using blocks, it's probably more complicated to get a hang off that you've got a starting point.
So that was, some of the core news as well. And then the last one we got in core news was, Gutenberg and 9.4, is introducing button, width, selector, and type biography controls for the list of block. And they, the one that stands out there is the button whip selector, which if you do check out the article on WP Tavern, it shows you some previews of that.
that person rip selector, it's a bit odd. Nathan and I talked about this on Friday, we looked at it and you imagine in any other UI that we've ever used, where you tend to define the width of the button by something that you type in or a slider. So you might say 200 pixels or auto wit four or 50% or something like that.
This button interface has choices of what is it? Twenty-five. What does that even say? 60,
Nathan Wrigley: [00:13:08] 25, 50, 75 and a hundred. I'm showing something on the screen
Paul Lacey: [00:13:15] for setting the width of the button, which begs the question. Why is that? Not just a slider
Bernhard Gronau: [00:13:24] would be to me.
Jan Koch: [00:13:26] That there won't be too much flexibility if it was just a slider.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:13:31] we're gonna, we're gonna it would segue perfectly if we were going to do it in this order, but we're going to look later on, on a plugin, a block plug in those, updated it to UI and UX. Considerably over the last couple of weeks and it does things slightly differently. And I feel it's slightly better.
obviously this isn't yet in core, but it does look, they're a bit arbitrary. Aren't they, 25, 50, 75 and a hundred. It's a, it's better than previously because in the past you had to use CSS. I think I on WP belts, I just think out of CSS class called something clever, like bottom full width or something, which made it a hundred percent, but it's awkward.
To have to do that. And I don't see why this isn't a
Jan Koch: [00:14:08] slide. I'm just looking at a good commit for the button margins. And there are a few things that are confusing you. One, it is based on those 25% multiple. So there's no 66% percent to 33%. And then also. The width doesn't include the margins. So they say in the get committed to 50% buttons would not fit on the same line.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:14:34] what could possibly go wrong? I guess it's a work in progress, but it is illustrative of things change. And clearly they're going to put some settings in, but we'll come back to this. and we'll compare what we see on the screen here now. With something later, but just for those people that are listening, basically, you've got four buttons to pick the wits now.
And that's all you've got and an option to open things in a new tab, which has been there for the longest time. also thank you, Yan. He's corrected myself. it's not the 6th of December. It's the 8th of December. yeah, there we go. And, let's move on. Bernard. You made a comment about Facebook comments not working.
I can't do that the minute I'm afraid if your Facebook isn't working for you guys, head over to WP belts.com forward slash
Bernhard Gronau: [00:15:17] correct. Don't get nice and beautiful images just,
Nathan Wrigley: [00:15:21] okay. Yeah. I don't know why that is, but, anyway, if it's, if the colors were working for, WP belts.com.
Forward slash live should sought you out. Okay. Let's do this poll. should we just clutter through your three or four first and then come to mind? I've got this one as the first one. This is the politically toxic, story that we're gonna. Gloss over very quickly because we don't want to get in trouble or annoying anybody.
Are we even going to cover this poll?
Paul Lacey: [00:15:48] Yeah. it's still it's a story about the story. I think it's a safe way to do it. I think, so there is a website called conservative Treehouse. And if you, I don't know if that website is live at the moment. Cause he got kicked off wordpress.com. And I think to know what he's on conservative Treehouse you probably just best to go and check out the website if it, when it, if, and when it is back live, I assume it's currently live.
I can go and take a look for yourself and see the type of content that it produces.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:16:17] It's back up. There it is.
Paul Lacey: [00:16:20] it's a fantastic design. look at that. Nice.
so this, I think the reason that this is actually a story on WordPress Tavern, It is because this happened. And then I think in the circles of the kind of unknown has described it, like the friends or the similar kind of channels to conservative Treehouse. I think they, I think that they blew it up on social media, that they, it's that thing about that particular narrative that you will often hear that the big tech is censoring the right.
For instance. So I think that's why this story has arrived here because I don't think WordPress Tavern would have picked it up otherwise, but it seems to have blown up elsewhere. And essentially what's happened is, what automatic have said to them that some of their content, on, on many occasions has gone past their automatic ads terms of.
So I've seen some also something about, the content. Also, let me just check what it says there. That pro as well as our prohibitation will said that, Against calls to violence outlined in the wordpress.com user guide, privatization permission. Yeah. the thing is workers.com is a company and this is just a website and they have.
Everyone has every right to just say, I don't want you on my platform. I think that this is just blown up because it's very hot topic at the moment about censorship or fake news or this sort of stuff. And I think if you go to the article, look at the website, turned off, make your own mind up about this.
Go and have a look at the comments because the comments are very interesting in lots of. and what you're making in the comments is it's people saying you didn't quite understand exactly what I said.
Bernhard Gronau: [00:18:11] Sure.
Paul Lacey: [00:18:15] And then I think the problem with this is that what automatics statement is short. It's two, we can see two paragraphs of this statement. It just says you did somethings wrong and you're off. And actually we're not going to turn you off immediately. Plus you're welcome to use. They have a version of WordPress cause everyone can use that.
Yeah. and then, I looked into some definitions around deep platforming to try and understand this better, what this actually means. and, what, when I typed into the definition of a platform, because a lot of people on Twitter were complaining about this, saying this is the platform and a website and how dare they do that.
And all that sort of stuff. I checked some D platform. It doesn't technically seem to apply to this situation because de platforming is stopping someone, having a voice. And they clearly said, we're not stopping you. You're having a voice. We just don't want to host you, but you can go and have your voice with exactly the same domain.
We can't stop you having the same domain. You can go and do it. And it's, but I think it's a story because it's politics and big tech and. From two paragraphs, people have made a huge amount of dialogue about this just shows how sensitive it is.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:19:23] it underlines the, my thought, which is the, basically the internet.
And certainly the comments on the internet RA are just an engine to become angry often, just, it's just happens so often. It's just,
Bernhard Gronau: [00:19:36] it's difficult to discuss this from, from Europe because. It feels like the U S issue,
Nathan Wrigley: [00:19:44] but also the interesting thing about this one is if this had happened on Squarespace or Wix or some other platform that hosts were, what websites, I just can't see this being.
Quite the controversy and it's because WordPress has this two sides to it. you've got the community side of the.org side. If you'd like, who are probably quite vocal about a subject such as this. And then you've got the.com site, which is, the mall. Business orientated. it's a company.
It has to make a profit and so on and so forth. and so the.org people chime in about in this case, the.com situation. Whereas there probably isn't that same community surrounding Wix or Squarespace.
Jan Koch: [00:20:22] I think it would be even more of an issue on sites like Wix and Squarespace, because
Nathan Wrigley: [00:20:27] community, do you think there'd be the same amount of
Jan Koch: [00:20:30] community?
From a community perspective, not, but the, I think the issue with a Wix or Squarespace would be how to move the site over to a different host, because right now it's very easy for them to just switch, hosting and keep their voice. Whereas they would have to probably rebuild everything. They use the static page builder or something like that.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:20:50] W we came Paul and I on Friday when we chatted. But I think we both came to the conclusion that basically.com is a private entity. If you like, and it's up to them, isn't it. if they have their terms and conditions and they can honestly point to a terms of condition that has been broken than they are within their rights to do this.
But it also speaks to a kind of hard to know the whole thing. Freedom of speech debate and the people on both sides of the debate, trying to clamp down and shot one another down. And so it's difficult, in an ideal world, we wouldn't have problems like this, but here we are. And WordPress probably can't dot com.
Can't be seen too. allow things like this, I'm guessing because they're fearful of the commercial blowback, because these days, all it takes is one notorious person to pick up on a story like this, tweet it. And all of a sudden you've got a PR nightmare on your hands. a news channel picks it up and off we go and.
Then the bottom line gets affected. So they're having to tread a very careful line and it's difficult, very difficult to see how this goes over time. anybody want to finish that one off?
Paul Lacey: [00:21:53] Yeah, she'll be fine. I did ban sales of some guns, weapons and ammo back in 2018. that was a bit of a story at the time.
I remember I was following the shooting, I think, That was whether again, it was political or just business interests thinking, we don't want it because, how many, whenever you hear the gun debate, he was like, it's crazy. Cause you can just go and buy a gun in Walmart because Walmart is like an international shop.
we have, we call it Alster in the UK. we also have imagine Godin's appearing, our version of Walmart and it's shocking for us to try and imagine that situation where there was guns everywhere in the, where we buy our tomatoes and avocado and stuff like that, chocolate bars and whatnot.
but yeah, show before I did. Did, make a decision on that. And I didn't know, actually, Shopify you're actually Canadian and know that, but, but it's funny cause all of the, articles that I read about this on American websites, like. Canadian online store provider. And it was what do they know about rules?
Bernhard Gronau: [00:22:54] It's
Paul Lacey: [00:22:55] just
Nathan Wrigley: [00:22:55] really interesting debate though. yeah, bottom line. They can do what they like. It's their platform. And this guy has obviously taken umbrage to it and certain people are going to chime in and support other people back in WordPress.
Paul Lacey: [00:23:08] It gets pretty, aggressive quite quickly on these kinds of situations, even in the comments.
there is the article itself mentions the name of the person that owns the website and. Apparently the name of the person who runs the website is not publicly known thing, but it probably is on Twitter. like when, a celebrity does something naughty and there's like a battle of media, but everyone knows who it is thing.
So the article itself mentions the name of this person and then send the comments, it's the article itself is fake news and doxing. adopting for people who don't know, I think is, where you name someone and that person can possibly get some bad blow back as a result of being publicly named for instance, but yeah, so it, it seems that it's just one of those subjects that cannot be articulated in a conversation with the words that humans are able to use.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:24:02] Who would have thought that there was politically sensitive material inside of the WordPress ecosystem? Oh, there really is
Paul Lacey: [00:24:11] just wordpress.com.
Cloud count was big tech. Is that the recount? It was big tech like Facebook and Twitter.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:24:18] Oh, you don't in my head.
Paul Lacey: [00:24:21] No,
Bernhard Gronau: [00:24:21] I wouldn't see it that way either, because you can go away and build the site yourself on any hosting. So it's not like locked in like a Twitter or Facebook because you can go off Facebook if you want to.
I don't know, use the service. Good. so it's different, but on the other hand, it's an it business and. They tend to throw all that stuff into one big basket, to give you like the impression yes. The, that the media is big tech is hurting us all and hiding it through us and stuff like that.
I don't know really what tends to make the form, those fake news discussions and stuff like that. People tend to shy away from real facts and talking about, I don't know their view of the world. we all have different views of the things happening. It's not necessarily easy to have a real shrews, just talk to two friends which had an and blow out.
Everybody tells you a different story. So
Paul Lacey: [00:25:21] there is
Bernhard Gronau: [00:25:22] very often not an objective term of truth. So all those discussions are moved to digest. Miss a common sense that people can disagree on a topic and still have fair, and square discussion about the topic. We don't need to agree on everything. We just need to find a way to talk about these things.
So it's maybe a good thing that they didn't get shut down entirely. on the other hand, it's difficult just because,
Jan Koch: [00:25:51] I think what might classify this as big tech is that the site claims to have around 1 million unique readers per day. So to summarize that is a big audience that they have.
I don't know how true those numbers are that they still have an article, but
Bernhard Gronau: [00:26:11] I agree with
Jan Koch: [00:26:11] burnout,
Nathan Wrigley: [00:26:13] I think to add when I'm the universal dictator. when that happens, I will force everybody to get along. That's that's my plan.
yes. Yeah, exactly. Everybody just needs to have long. Oh, sorry. Paul. I'm moving. That was cruel. I apologize. That was not, I was not nice at me. So this is the next one, this, where are you taking this one? Paul, was this one of your stories? This stack
Paul Lacey: [00:26:43] of it? Yeah, sure. I think, if there was a theme to this week's show, it would be.
about confusion about identity. Sometimes I think, in terms of products in WordPress, especially not knowing what direction it's supposed to be going in. if they're supposed to get involved in political things or not. and then in terms of the product thing, right? So let me do the news item first, because I'm already segwaying into, a side thing, but so the article, sorry to get back on track is that, stackable, which is, one of the companies that one of the brands that those are set of, really good.
Gutenberg block editor blocks have done a update that user interface and user experience with their blocks. And you can find the, the article on the dot com a website in their blog. The title is of the art of the piece. There's a better user interface and user experience, and it's in the updates constant.
Great. They're quite proud of what they've done here and I'm like, I'm not sure exactly. it's quite difficult when you see the side-by-side, what has actually changed that much, but I feel like it's one of those things that if you were using it, you would feel it. And that's why they're so pleased about this, but they're doing their best to patch the, the situation they've got to work with.
So in a way, it seems that they're aware that people struggle with, with the block editor. They have a product that sits on top of the block editor and they probably get support requests about why has this gone wrong and why is that gone wrong? So they're taking it upon themselves to do their best, to improve the user interface here.
And honestly, I know that's the article, so that's great. But the thing that has been sticking in my mind with a lot of these, things about whether it's the button width thing that we saw. Or people, putting good comments in the truck, in track or whatever it's called. I'm starting to really think that, automatic, want to have this great product workers.com that rivals Squarespace and it rivals wakes and all these kinds of things.
And if that is actually happening and that's what they want and they want the block, it to be the thing that helps power that, Chuck an absolute ton of money into this in. Into the block editor and approach it like an actual product design. So you do testing, do proper user research, stop having the entire community, chipping in, on things on track or get hub or whatever it is.
And someone comes up with an idea and then a huge conversation comes up and at the other end of that is. Something completely different than what's not it at the beginning of the idea. So I would love to stay automatic, even though some people were like, Hey, no, that's stupid because this is a community driven program.
Like I think it, to me, it seems that wordpress.com and automatically creating a product for their own, whatever. So I'll approach it really sensitively. And what I do love seeing is when you see these articles and someone has done like a. How this could look if it was done properly and it would be, it might be like the block patterns interface, which isn't one of the other articles and some UX designer or UI designer somewhere puts an absolutely amazing proposal forward and everyone talks around it and then nothing much gets done about it or a proposal gets put forward.
And when that proposal gets put forward, it's a proposal in track or get hub or wherever it is that these things get discussed. And then. And then the person who actually had the idea and all the experience that put the idea out is basically forgotten at that point. And then something else comes out the other end, change your button with the 25%, 50% or a hundred percent.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:30:27] we can't go on
Paul Lacey: [00:30:30] and be a bit of a UX laughing stock. So the rest of the products out there. So I'd love automatic to go. We're putting a bunch of money in to create a product team. Yeah. And guess who we hiring that person that you've heard of over there because they built that product really amazingly.
And that person over
Nathan Wrigley: [00:30:47] there.
Paul Lacey: [00:30:48] If Apple did stuff like this, then we'd based care for PC at the end. Wouldn't be
Nathan Wrigley: [00:30:52] so
Paul Lacey: [00:30:57] conversation
Jan Koch: [00:30:57] we had at the beginning. Off-camera around PCNL.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:31:01] Yeah, I think the, and we'll segue a little bit later into another article where we explore the, where the article explores the constraints of the. Of the little panel that, where we've got so on screen at the moment is, stackables Gothenburg options.
And obviously if you've ever used Gothenburg you'll know that there's a, a fixed width panel on the right-hand side, where all of the stuff happens and. The article that we'll come to in a minute explores, modifying that I've actually on a couple of my websites. I've just put a bit of CSS to increase the width of this because I find it almost unusable in certain situations.
I've mentioned it before writing the w the WordPress post excerpt in there. Is ridiculous because it's two, two rows, high, three rows high, every time you mouse away from it, it collapses. And you have to scroll back again in the tiny little window. and it's a bit of a disaster, but I just think companies like this stackable, it's just showing what can be done there.
Obviously, it's minor little things that we're looking at. For example, they've put borders around, selected options. So if you're currently hovering over styles, it puts a board around that instead of a little blue line, which is like the WordPress default, they've taken care of things like the button problem that we mentioned a moment ago by putting sliders.
And they're using really normal conventions in this UI, but they're just doing it better. And I totally take on board. Paul's point about just hiring some elite people. Who would just tell us how it's going to look? I think that would be an interesting idea, even if it was hire a bunch of people and put out a version and just see what people think at that point, which bits of it do people like which bits of it that they don't do.
They not anyway, stackable looking really nice. I have to say I'm very pleased to be an owner of stackable. It certainly looking like a really solid project going forward. I'm conscious that. Yanno Burnett. Maybe didn't get a chance in there if you want to just chip in,
Bernhard Gronau: [00:33:06] my point of view to Gutenberg, everybody has listened to me before on the show.
it's still the wild West. I stick with that, because so many things are changing in the background and this is, and that is edit. And then this one is changed. I think our, recently. They again, changed some big stuff in the background, the dips around something so easier.
and I wonder how it doesn't feel sometimes there is a real idea behind it. I don't know if it's the right term, it's hard to translate it. but like these options here, you have to out that, And then I think, okay. Did they ask any designer? Does it make sense that way? Like the pattern it's perfect example.
what happens if any three buttons or
Paul Lacey: [00:33:50] two? Yeah.
Bernhard Gronau: [00:33:51] How was it? it's like a good idea, but then somebody waited, implemented it in person. Didn't think it through to the end.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:34:01] Yeah. Yeah.
Bernhard Gronau: [00:34:03] Okay. They're not the standard myself. I'm more a programmer guy or just doing stuff and using stuff and, slowly getting more and more ideas about the, because my graphic designer, she always says, no, don't do it that way because of that, Oh, yes.
That's I understand that. but it has couldn't break the real direction. I don't feel it's sometimes.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:34:25] Yeah. Yeah. That's it. It's a good point. Yeah. Anything to chip in or should we press on
Jan Koch: [00:34:30] that's prism?
Nathan Wrigley: [00:34:31] Okay.
Paul Lacey: [00:34:33] Fair enough.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:34:33] Fair enough. Fair enough. Fair enough. Right then on the next piece is, I'll take the lead on this one, if that's all right.
this is. Or this kind of caused a little bit of contrasting. I posted this one in the WP builds Facebook group and it felt to me like the, it was drawn down the center, really 50%, one side, 50% on the other. So this is an article on WordPress Tavern written by Justin Tatlock entitled should WordPress notify users of ownership changes.
And Justin's obviously built things in the past and essentially. Should there be some kind of legal requirement, WordPress requirement that if the owner of a plugin changes, that there's a notification about that is to say, okay, this plugin was yesterday owned by these people. Now it's owned by these people because at the moment, really the only way of knowing that is to follow the press or maybe.
Maybe the developers will put something in the change log or something like that, but it's not entirely the office. And it may be that you fall under it. different set of terms and conditions. There may be different things that you're agreeing to the data that the plugin, uses maybe suck to a different location, all sorts of jurisdictional, legal things come into mind.
And so my opinion on this is because this happens so infrequently. at least that's my experience. you hear about plugins changing hands several times a year. And in most cases I'm not the owner of those. So I'm imagining maybe this will impact me once or twice a year. I think it's okay to put it in the plugin UI.
That is to say, if you go to the plugins area of your WordPress dashboard a little, pop-up not a, pop-up a little message. Almost like where it says this plugin needs updating. He goes there and just gives you a heads up, easy to dismiss, not really getting in the way. So I was happy with that, but on surprisingly, there were people sitting on the other side of the fence who were no, we just get enough of this nonsense.
Could we just either not have it? Or could we perhaps have a dedicated area for it? Could it be tucked away in a different place, but I might I'm I'm okay with this. I think this should happen, especially in the light of GDPR and especially in the low of the things that, might be changing the data that might be going into different places.
So it's open to you, one of you in serums.
Jan Koch: [00:36:50] I think it's very interesting. I just browse through the comments on the WP Tavern article. And there are many that say it should happen, but on the other hand, If I see myself in a situation like this, I will probably be on the mailing list of their plugin developer anyways.
So at the time when the deal needs to be public, because there is back and forth, if you're selling a plugin, I would imagine it takes six months, at least to, Get onto negotiations and find a good price for the plugin and to handle the handover process essentially. So in that time you cannot make the deal public because it isn't fixed it.
And even after the dealer's fixed, you probably need another four weeks to two months or something to set everything. So I see it. in two ways, the average quote, WordPress user probably doesn't need to know this because they don't care. They just build a WordPress website.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:37:40] What
Jan Koch: [00:37:41] I see who cares is people who like us, who make a living of building WordPress websites.
We need to know when things change. So that's marketing agencies and freelancers and stuff. So I would like to see it, but I'm not sure if the WordPress admin area is the best way to notify this.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:37:58] Yeah. Yeah. It's interesting. Very interesting. Polled funded.
Paul Lacey: [00:38:03] Yeah. all I was gonna say was, This just makes me think about, general notifications throughout the whole of WordPress.
Again, thinking back to the product, the, there is so many different places where messages come to us in WordPress. Now there's no, again, I would like some proper UI UX person to come in and go. There is a problem in general with how we communicate important information to the right types of users in WordPress.
There was a bunch of ways that it's getting done at the moment. Sometimes it's good. Sometimes it's not, sometimes it's being misused and putting adverts in places where people are happy about their adverts. Sometimes it's great. And I feel like if you look at almost any, it doesn't matter almost how complicated the SAS app is that you're using or other software.
That tends to be like a central place where your notifications about any new thing or thing you should do the UN inside of them where these applications have a lot of information to communicate to. You can filter. So you can say, Hey, you know what? In my install of workers, I don't want any marketing messages, so I'm going to put a, do want security models.
And I do want ones about terms of ownership of products and stuff like that. and, and that's what I want to see. And then there's the little circle, reverse notification thing somewhere saying you've got eight notifications and you can check them and you go, all right, cool. But don't need to see any junk on my dashboard anymore because I never ever think in the usual place where everything is.
So I'd love to see. I'd love to see, the same, amazing UX designer who, who's done some successful products than where the team would come in and solve that as well, but just start making it an unbelievably proud to work. We product that we will not comply. I think I'm complaining all the time.
I actually feel a bit wound up today. I don't know. it's
Nathan Wrigley: [00:39:56] it's the lockdown. I think that Google handle it quite well in Google half this, just this little red dot. At the top right hand side and you click on it and this little window kind of pops open and it hovers above the UI and you just swipe them with your finger, or you can click a little button if you're on desktop and they all just live in that little panel.
And then if you want to drill down into the notifications, you go to a note, a desk dedicated notifications area, where they could be collected couldn't they could be. Like a plugins tab or, I dunno, marketing top or whatever tab, in this case, what we're talking about here is, I don't know, change of ownership tab.
That's probably a bit specific, but you get the point. that just seems like a sensible thing for me to do. And a little red dot somewhere in the UI and the admin area would be all that they need. Yes.
Bernhard Gronau: [00:40:46] I think it's, there should be one step ahead of that. There should be any visible indication. Besides remember the owner that they ownership has changed
Nathan Wrigley: [00:40:56] because
Bernhard Gronau: [00:40:57] as far as I know, you don't see anywhere.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:41:01] Chris Hughes makes a good point. And Chris Hughes, I think I'm correct. In fact, I'm more or less, a hundred percent certain has as a quiet some plug-ins in the past. And he says, the problem is the free plug, no mailing lists that, they're just on the repository. There's probably, might be a hundred, 200 a thousand uses whatever.
There's no mailing list for that. And another problem is those people will update via services, like main WP managed WP, who just simply don't get. Any of those notifications, that's a good point as well. It makes it hard to actually reach these people. yeah, we've probably been a little bit clumsy with our way of thinking about it.
Paul Lacey: [00:41:36] Listen to that though. So if you have a unified place of, notifications, then you would imagine that would come with a unified API for notifications. So working in using managed to repeat your main deal review or European and debit, it doesn't really matter each of those pieces of software. No.
But it taps into the next vacation API and that its own dashboard and present the new important information again to the user who's managing 50 or a hundred websites from a dashboard. So it's possible. And I think that's why I think there's product now. I'm calling WordPress a product because it used to be a piece of software.
I don't think it's more like a product now, with automatic as well, Moving its direction in that kind of in that kind of way. It needs someone who's thinking about that and not putting it out to the committee all of the time. I know that view of mine is not universal at all because what's that this everyone can contribute and stuff like that.
yeah, I get that too. I don't know. I just, don't if we're just setting this thing on fire by, When, the communities can still get massive, but maybe there should be a lot of consulting with the community and agreement on goals. And then the designer goes and does the thing and presents it back with a prototype of people.
Comment from that.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:42:59] I don't know. Chris uses added a further comment that like this notification area that we were talking about a moment ago, but he's added an extra layer on top of that saying with strict non-commercial terms. I have. and then he mentioned, the abuse of that in the past with large adverts coming around, but this time of year, believe it or not, I've got an N that could.
That could fit nicely into a notifications area. Couldn't it? In that you could have a commercial section and although that would probably very infrequently get visited, you could have a deals section or an ad section or whatever, just commercial stuff going in there, whether that would be abused.
Oh, you could switch the, you could switch any form of indication that something new or dropped into there completely off if you didn't want to go in there. some people want to be alerted to these kinds of deals as they go on. yeah. Interesting. okay. I think the consensus is we can't agree on this one 50% of people in the comments wanted it 50% didn't and yeah.
Yeah. Okay. I'm going to move on the next one. I'm actually very quickly going to put these stackable. Deal backup, because I just want you to just appreciate that for a moment. And then we're going to go to this one and look at this fellow. So this is again on Whoa, this is on WP Tavern. Again, this is, let me just turn the comment off though, which is covering up Young's face.
Sorry about that. Yeah. this is a proposal to create an expanded view or overlay for the blocks and patterns in certain. Now, honestly, I think. What I'm staring at the screen here could be used for so many things, not just the patterns in Serta, but what I'm looking at on the screen is a screenshot.
It's like an animated GIF of somebody trying to use patterns, to insert something into their page or posts. block patterns are kind of collections of blocks. So they might have three, three buttons in a row or three images in a row testimonials, that kind of thing. And it's very difficult to show that in the UI and.
This post illustrates that. maybe we should have a little expand button, which just takes over the whole screen. And further down, we have look at this, last week we had Dovi on the show and they've illustrated on this episode. They have illustrated here that a, the Redux plot plugin handles it in this way.
It's quite a nice UI. I think this is a jolly good idea. I think we should. Have an expanded view in all sorts of ways, not just for block patterns, but just the entire thing. I think it would be nice if it like a desktop can collapse the mobile. I think that little sidebar should expand and fill up different things and you can expand it, make it tablet size.
If you like. Turn your screen on its side and see what happens. anyway, so I just think this is something which needs to happen with the implementation in this article is not the most attractive. It's obviously a, just a suggestion at the moment, but,
Paul Lacey: [00:45:51] it's a very well intelligently written article, in my opinion, that mentioned some very prominent WordPress.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:46:00] People, but it starts off well, doesn't it. And then towards the end, it really starts to, start to scrape the barrel because look at this has made Paul's day in the I'm going to quote this because it really is.
It's fabulous. When somebody gets a mention the very last paragraph of this article, another common feature that many types of systems share in a way to save part patterns as favorites. This makes them easy to locate in the future. Paul Lacey who's. He makes the same argument in episode number 136 of the WP.
Bell's weekly WordPress news podcast. There you go, clients to have easy access to the post, the most used block patterns. This would be a nice bonus to help clean up the block patterns, user experience. we got to be careful what we say because Justin is watching and as we know. Justin knows where we're all pretenders.
really good guy. And, anyway, just the most substantive point is, do you like this idea? obviously nobody's going to make it look like with that particular article, it, it's not even central aligned and it's got a fairly nasty, thick border around the edge, but the principle of
Bernhard Gronau: [00:47:04] it, I
Nathan Wrigley: [00:47:06] just don't see why not
Jan Koch: [00:47:09] the mentor's doing.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:47:11] let's go with yang first. You'd go for it. I'm
Paul Lacey: [00:47:13] sorry.
Jan Koch: [00:47:14] it reminds me of what elemental is doing with the preview for all the templates and prebuilt layouts and stuff
Nathan Wrigley: [00:47:21] like that. Yep. Paul,
Paul Lacey: [00:47:24] yeah, good. elemental and let's make element or put all their templates in a small, tiny area on the side.
And see what their customers say.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:47:37] You made tweeted something this week. Paul, look at me just like basically trolling Paul Lacey. This week, you tweeted about having this sidebar, that Gothenburg sidebar being mobile first as an option. So instead of seeing what we can see here, which is the desktop options, those little icons should always be mobile.
I don't know if that fits into this and otherwise, if you go to the expanded view, would you see both?
Paul Lacey: [00:48:04] look at the first
Nathan Wrigley: [00:48:05] one. Oh, I know. I should describe for those people listening. It's it's a terrible layout. Three images side by side, and then, Massively elongated piece of ultra narrow text, which has no business existing
Paul Lacey: [00:48:18] because signpost or something, doesn't it
Nathan Wrigley: [00:48:22] like a flag?
Paul Lacey: [00:48:25] I think, I never think that this will happen. It was just the case of knowing that, mobile is the predominant way. Most people view websites now, especially in. parts of Asia it's even more so than anywhere else. I think in the U S it's around, it's just over 50% at the moment on average and stuff.
So if we're creating a piece of software that wants to stand out from everyone else and has got a bunch of things wrong with it at the moment, but wants to be the flag bearer of how things should be done in the future. It was just an idea that came to my mind. But if we do have struggle, if we are struggling for space and we are trying to empower people with a new, powerful graphic editor that they've not come across before, they will default to thinking about desktop design and there will be a whole new world of terrible websites again.
just like the first time, page builders came out. So it struck me that if people were looking at things as structure to pull into their pages, that would. Be better for the long term than people going, Oh, I like that layout pulling it in. And then, it just doesn't work for them, their whole design, for instance.
So that was it really, it was more a case of, I was thinking, should we start focusing on structure, which happens to work quite well with mobile first because you. You think, what is the least I need here? What do I need? I need a testimonial. So let's show a testimonial. because if you're using a mobile, make it a mobile site, you probably only have one testimonial instead of six.
So if you design your website in the testimonial block has got six. As many as you, you pull that in and then on my body, love six testimonials when you probably didn't even want one. And so I just felt I wasn't the only one as well. there's a link that I put in the private chat.
To the most famous WordPress designers ever.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:50:21] Brian Gardner, let me just put this up. Cause it is quite funny. sweet. Cause it, this one, the tweet of,
Paul Lacey: [00:50:27] yeah. So for the listeners, I'll read this out and display it and say Brian Gardner, who was one of the it's the founder of Genesis and studio press.
is the, these days he's more known as a designer, I think. And he, his whole parameters around simple, effective, easy to use design, and he's just tweeted live footage of me trying to select main columns block in WordPress to increase the number. And then he's got a kind of gainful of this cap that looks like it's playing.
so this cat clearly can't find what it's trying to do. And I think if you've got someone like Brian Gardner who is struggling to use a simple way, it's especially a simple user interface and just create some columns, then there's probably a problem there because you think that he would, be able to figure it out.
But he's like a lot of others.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:51:16] Yeah. Yeah.
Bernhard Gronau: [00:51:21] That's acceptance testing or how you ever call it happening with Gutenberg? Does anyone, sometimes like all those minor issues from a UX perspective, because there are solutions for those issues. And just look at how page builder they did was matter Elementor or people builder, where can track around your editor or Pitt flex it, or like bracing, if they're in line controls, or add-ons for people to build up the similar stuff.
but come on, somebody must have tested
Paul Lacey: [00:51:56] this. I'm
Nathan Wrigley: [00:51:58] just going to draw attention to something that, it is Justin, isn't it? Yes. Justin says it never really struck me until I read this and he's right. And I quote WordPress's along habit of sticking too much into a tiny panel. Many thing Martha's never felt like a customized panel offered enough space.
For example, the same seems to be the case where the block editors insert a panel is good enough for a long end use pick and choose blocks. However patterns are much larger than the smaller block icons. When users start scrolling through dozens of patterns at the same time coming months, and in the coming months and years, it will become a usability nightmare.
And we really are. We are terminally constrained by the width of this tiny little box and there's absolutely no flexibility whatsoever. And my example of tying to type the WordPress excerpt into that tiny box is just one of myriad ways. This totally needs to be addressed, I think. And I'm nominating Paul Lacey.
Paul Lacey: [00:52:51] address that so I can just complain about it.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:52:57] Oh, okay.
Paul Lacey: [00:52:58] Every Monday, just box and start moaning about, yeah, I do feel bad because I totally appreciate all the work that the people are putting in, if it's in, if you're in a wall, let's say, America got invaded or something like that. I know they've got a lot of guns, so there's a lot of talent that can shoot people and stuff like that.
But if they all just running around like crazy, they won't be able to stop the invaders as individuals. And I feel like there needs to be some. Some leadership put back into this project now. And, I know it's supposed to be the benign dictator or whatever it is, the
Nathan Wrigley: [00:53:33] deep and Netherland dictator,
Paul Lacey: [00:53:36] benevolent dictator.
But actually I think, that benevolent dictator could hire some people who, and help, do this a bit different to say, Hey, you know what, maybe this approach. Works. 10 years ago when WordPress was simpler and the people that were innovating were product creators that put, plugins and, nice people needed to make sure that their product was perfect for the users because they simply wouldn't get paid.
if no one bought their products, maybe WordPress, the software has got another angle these days that it never used to that it's got a big, complicated product aspects and. We need to get someone in to do something about it. I made myself clear on that
Nathan Wrigley: [00:54:17] today. Again, I refer the honorable gentleman to the comment I made some moments ago.
I nominate Paul Lacey to fix this problem.
Bernhard Gronau: [00:54:28] Yeah, I've noticed that because it was a good book lately, but how does the workflow screw couldn't pro to get staff released? Who decides that? I don't feel like there is really a. if you have a blood first released and there is a release lead, and there are some people assigned to different kinds of stuff, and there's an organization that did that, there is a decision which facts get triaged and would stuff get postponed.
for the Goodman park, I don't get the feeling. I don't pay close attention because, I'm still waiting to be at a certain level for gluten product to really use it. Sorry. But, but I don't know. How does anyone know if you have an idea?
Nathan Wrigley: [00:55:10] No, not a very clear idea, but, But I am going to try and get a clearer idea.
Now that you said that I honestly don't know. I don't know how that works. Maybe, maybe if just in Tadlock is listening Hill conveniently knocked off. Obviously not saying that, I am going to move on. And I'm gonna poll. I know we discussed this one from Astra. Do you think we should throw that one in or not?
Paul Lacey: [00:55:34] I think it's worth
Nathan Wrigley: [00:55:35] it. I think it's time. Okay. I'm not sure what I make of this, because, so this is an article it's over on the Astra, blog. It's called introducing the simplest header footer builder with Astra. Okay. And basically. I'm going to just scroll up until we see some animated gifs and those people who are watching will get the idea, but I just don't know what I want to make of this because I'm in WordPress.
I'm a big page builder user, and those page builder interfaces are so sublimely cool. they just do what you tell them to do. And they look in the site, they look what comes out the front looks like what you've got at the back. But when I first came to WordPress, there were. That bill builders were not that sophisticated.
It was, people were trying to make them less sophisticated. So you have things like visual composer and there was a product by themes called builder. I believe it was where you would construct little blocks, but you wouldn't see any of the content, but you'd say, okay, the logos. I'm going to create a row of three little sections.
And then the logo is always going to go in the right section and I'm going to put some texts or a menu in the left-hand section and so on, but you never got to see what it would look like until you'd saved it. And then gone over to your website again. and it felt to me like that era had passed and all developments in the future would be more along the lines of literally what is what you get.
And then this came out this week, which is Astra the most popular theme. That's not a core theme on the wordpress.org repo. over a million installs. And they've come up with this UI, which. Does exactly what I've just said. You've dragged in little blocks. It, that's the menu, but you don't see the menu, you know that's going to be the logo, but you'd have, see the logo.
And then you've got what looks like a customizer to alter the options. you can change different settings, change the height and so on and so forth. And I just don't know what to make of it. I don't know whether this feels like the future or Walking back into the past a little bit.
Bernhard Gronau: [00:57:35] So first, why do we have that? Because there is another team called cadence, which is like the new feature of the rounds, pulling through, the WordPress ecosystem because certain people push it for certain reasons, which I won't discuss detail because I just have such party information around that.
But they have
Nathan Wrigley: [00:57:57] that feature.
Bernhard Gronau: [00:57:58] So if you have a competition coming up, it's sometimes a good idea to pick ideas and, at them yourself,
Nathan Wrigley: [00:58:07] do you mean the cadence? Because I haven't used cadence. Do you mean to say that cadence has this feature as we're seeing it on the screen with blocks or is it more of a wisdom?
Jan Koch: [00:58:19] Yep. Yup. I have this on the merge store that I recently built and I just wanted to chime in before Bernard took the stage. That it's exactly the same. It's exactly the same. it, obviously the branding is a little bit different, but the functionality is exactly just as what we're seeing on the screen right now.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:58:41] So there's a different issue altogether, right? We're talking about, seeing what other people are doing and then taking that idea of running with it for your own theme. An interesting, comment in here. Where's it gone? It's just disappeared. Oh, there's sometimes when you look at the comments in stream yard, they pop and they just, you're hovering over it.
Mark Davis saying it's not his preferred option. I really disliked that as a menu builder, but I get why inexperienced people would love it. And that's a good point there isn't it is that you don't need to see the logo. You just need to know that's where the logo is going. And that's probably less clutter to
Bernhard Gronau: [00:59:16] build Heathers in page builders is tricky.
Nathan Wrigley: [00:59:19] True. Lots of moving parts, right?
Bernhard Gronau: [00:59:23] You have all those transparency or not transparent hatters and stuff like, how is the menu on mobile? How to pass that stuff at a mug and a mobile, because many page builders just have percentage with columns, not pixel with or Maxim midwives. So you need either a little bit of custom CSS or really know what you're doing.
so for a simple cricket, darker side, I think that's great to have features like that. for my point of views, themes begin to struggle because they need to add benefits because if you have a page builder theme, now we see all those. Page filled with themes like Astra, cadence, and generate press and ocean and pitch with the framework in front of you are called the app, the option to add roles, to add staff between content before content, after content.
so it's like very easy for non-experienced people to just add content and almost any place in WordPress. very early. I needed to know what about hooks, about filters, about stuff like that. So it's a larger ISTEP to just add some of that to Heather and FUTA too to make it easier. So I think it's a good thing.
And for a quick and dirty side, it's easy. I find that a good move because they don't need to see the end result.
Nathan Wrigley: [01:00:43] I think you've made the right call there though. The simplicity of it is. is really novel. And I obviously have missed the trick there, not knowing that cadence did this. And then obviously seeing Astros doing that, I just assumed the asteroid kind of innovated here, but it looks like Caden's who kind of got there first, but yeah,
Paul Lacey: [01:00:59] missing, it said sorry to
Jan Koch: [01:01:02] drop that many themes on theme forest had that pre cadence
Nathan Wrigley: [01:01:05] or, and
Bernhard Gronau: [01:01:06] that's what,
Nathan Wrigley: [01:01:06] that's what I, what for that have come out recently because it feels to me like this is a.
A nine year old UI, not a kind of, but obviously they don't have a page builder. It just felt strange because I'm using a page builder all the time that everything just looks how it looks anyway. Fascinating. But you're right. Burners. I think you've called it the simplicity of the use of it. And it just looked at simple doesn't it?
And some of the layouts that they put together lower down. I look really nice. I'm showing on the screen some little menu items, headers, and so on. Looks great. Nothing wrong with that. And then obviously it says coming very soon, there's a video for the dragon drop foot or builder. I'm presuming it's exactly the same setup.
Only for footers poll Jonathan, anything, or shall we move in?
Paul Lacey: [01:01:52] Yeah, the th the users on the Astra blog seem very happy about it. Obviously those comments might be motivated, to, in that way, but I don't know. I don't know, but, I think I've had my mind changed on this a little bit today.
Nathan Wrigley: [01:02:05] nanny to me too,
Paul Lacey: [01:02:08] that like, at first I did think this feels Number one, something that I would have really benefited from a few years ago, if say, January, Chris had this kind of builder, then I was also thinking, we still get some messed up headers. Like from too many elements and then on mobile, it all not work, but it will definitely be better than when, like what Bernard said about when I've seen people try and build headers in page builders, which really is really tricky.
I think in any page, apart from maybe oxygen, I think they have it pretty sorted in, in their system. but. It is copying like what stuff that's been done before, but that doesn't mean that they've copied it. They've just seen that is in a world where you can build your head a roof.
The settings in the customizer, which we've been told is a thing of the past. And then you've got an option to build it. You had a river page builder, which is hard. And then you've got things like generate blocks, which from generate press that's allows you to build a header with the Gutenberg block editor, which is.
forward thinking, but the block editor is the Blocket it's when we know how we feel about that. And then this is a kind of on rails design system. So you can, you can't go as badly wrong as you could with Hartley. You can go further if you creativity, but you can't go quite as badly wrong,
Nathan Wrigley: [01:03:28] good point
Paul Lacey: [01:03:29] systems.
So I actually liking it. And also I did see in the comments that this part of this functionality will be available to the free version of Astra as well, which is nice for the people who are using the free version. It's so yeah, I've definitely had my mind changed because at first I was just like, why now?
And yet cadence has got this recently and, cadences, to, for instance is promoted a lot by, Adam from dopey crafter. Those awesome videos. and he is an affiliate marketer. everybody knows that, but he does good products, but he does have a lot. It does seem to his, him and his audience to have the ability to influence the direction of products.
And I think that he's backing a lot in, and he's a big fan of cadence at the moment. And he used to be always promoting Astra and maybe the Astra team. Good. I just looking at what people from cadence one and going, okay, we'll build up. Okay. Cadence people say they want that on Adam's channel. We built that.
that's Australia's becoming that all in one theme. Like it probably should stop trying to say that it's the fastest theme anymore, because it is only if you take the more or less useless question of the week, but it's still a very. Good theme. And they're very interested in performance and low score things like, the now a good,
Bernhard Gronau: [01:04:48] really do something wrong with all those major themes.
I guess I started to look at everything because it's in the end with BeaverBuilder and steamer. It's just, it does a great task, great stuff for the beginner users, but like you said, he pledged for Astra. maybe people don't know, but, he's co-founder of the tax lows and controls, as far as I know, it's still together with the Astro team.
So it's a little bit of complex situation. the, it never hurts to know a little bit about the background, I think he does a great job and he really serves an audience. And for that, I'm very thankful because I think we need people like that. But in the end, we all know people have to make money too.
So while it has many office staff out of good of his heart in the end, there is always a little bit of business interest in it. That's if any influencer or any people, because yet everybody has to make a living.
Nathan Wrigley: [01:05:49] Yeah. it's
Paul Lacey: [01:05:50] definitely got a great ability to influence the product because he's an audience.
He sets up the questions really well for his audience. The audience respond and they speak with their wallets. And that's why, cadence and Astra seem to have roadmaps that match what people want now. But does that mean that cadence will. Become irrelevant when it all shifts again and cadence like, Oh, we've got so much baggage.
We can't now move to what everyone wants now. no that's where Astra is at the moment. It's like we did everyone want it for two year, two years ago. And now we can't undo all that. And look, cadence is doing all this stuff, but you can use it. You can switch between these products. It's bad news for the product owner, but, but they were making tons and tons of sales at the time.
Nathan Wrigley: [01:06:40] I'm going to have to move it on if that's all right. I hope that's okay because we're running out of time, but it's certainly an interesting discussion. There's quite a few comments that crop top in there. just one thing max was saying, where do we get the URLs for this? And I put the URL up.
if you go to news dot WP belts.com and just click on the latest one in this case, it's number one, three, nine, then you'll find. you'll find all of the pieces and, just find the bit about, in this case, the Astro one it's under the it'll be on the plugins themes and blocks. Okay.
So very clever chap called Alan Turing quite a few years ago, came up with this sort of artificial intelligence test. This has nothing to do with WordPress. I might stress. And that was that basically it got called the Turing test. If you could, if a computer pretending to be a human. Could talk to a human let's say on a phone or in text or something.
And the human couldn't distinguish whether it was a human or not. Then AI had. Succeeded. And we had reached the point where a computer is indistinguishable from a human and essentially it had become almost like a conscious state. One of the, one of the reputations of this argument is always that, I'm sorry, but, computers cannot do art.
They don't have the ability to create art. ladies and gentlemen, let me bring you computer generated a I art, I looked at this and, I am no artist. But when I go into sort of galleries and things, this is what I see. This is the stuff that I see. And honestly, it is indistinguishable to my eyes from that of an artist.
if we're just like, let's just pick one off the page and go for this. Let's just put one up, show it. And it's something which I think might be reminiscent of a windmill or something like that. Honestly. Would you be able to truthfully say a human did that or a computer did that? Obviously, if you were looking at it in real life and you have the three dimensions of the pain and all that yet fine.
What do you reckon is terrifying?
Paul Lacey: [01:08:47] it is art and it's because what they say, the WordPress what's the WordPress, WordPress slogan is code is poetry.
Nathan Wrigley: [01:08:55] That's right.
Paul Lacey: [01:08:56] Like poetry is art. So your connection, this, I guess is, art created by coders and AI.
Jan Koch: [01:09:07] So that's Metta, essentially it's art created by art.
Nathan Wrigley: [01:09:11] Yeah, but
it's totally indistinguishable to my, look at that. W, sorry, again, if you're listening to this, I apologize. The it's called art AI gallery.com. And basically you just go to art, AI gallery.com. You'll see it. It just. Totally an utterly indistinguishable to my eye from what an artists would produce.
And I'm sorry if you're an artist and you find this offensive, but it's just fabulous. And honestly, I imagine most people's experience with art isn't that they want to spend a long time in a gallery. I imagine this is just for people who want to put something on the wall. That's a bit of a talking point from now, or fill in a bit of a gap.
Bernhard Gronau: [01:09:50] With art, it's always the discussion. I feel it's it's talking about the image that is created or are we talking about the craftsmanship that's needed to make the image by hand?
Paul Lacey: [01:10:05] Because
Nathan Wrigley: [01:10:05] I know the, no, but you can imagine the algorithm for this will just get better based upon what sells.
It's okay. A ton of those sold let's make art more like that until eventually we get the most bit, the most bland on interesting AI art, which is just exactly what everybody wants. I think, I think the computer has gone a bit wrong here. Oh no, it's a hurricane. Okay. Fine.
Paul Lacey: [01:10:29] It has gone wrong in some of them that has the night, which is
Nathan Wrigley: [01:10:31] quite formal, but you can tell
Bernhard Gronau: [01:10:34] it's more than that's perfectly fine.
Paul Lacey: [01:10:39] I can write novels and screenplays and stuff now currently. maybe we can have the AI. Art critic that goes on the website and is trying to describe and pointing out what's in this picture and save it and then compare that to an actual art critic and see which one makes the most sense to the average user.
Jan Koch: [01:11:02] Isn't there also an AI that Google demonstrated recently that booked appointments for you by looking into your calendar. And they were calling people like they would call your salon or beauty salon, whatever, and do an appointment with you. And those people wouldn't recognize that
Nathan Wrigley: [01:11:22] they had to. I think it was California law had to be amended such that it had to announce itself.
As an AI because yeah, they did it live on stage at Google IO. I think it was in 2019 and yeah, sure enough, it called up a restaurant and made a reservation and inserted all sorts of human mannerisms completely deliberately. Ah, yeah. Yeah. Hold on a minute. just nonsense stuff that we all do it wasn't perfect.
They had to deliberately put the imperfections in, Yeah, the good thing about humans is we've got the imperfections already. Ha computers, that's it. You have to think about imperfections. the next big thing, of course, as Mac says, is, computers, designing websites. Whereas this isn't that far away, honestly, I think give it 10 years and something will come along, which enables us to speak our website.
Give me a nice website. 10 seconds later. Is that any good? Yeah, that's fine. Okay. Let's go with that. Totally. That's it. That's what it'll be pop
Bernhard Gronau: [01:12:27] makes the local more
Nathan Wrigley: [01:12:28] public, what's annoying Paul though, is that the computer won't argue? The computer will go. Yeah. Yeah.
Bernhard Gronau: [01:12:43] sorry. Can't do that. Yeah.
Nathan Wrigley: [01:12:45] that was my final piece for the week. I appreciate, I appreciate all the involvement from the three people with me today as always Paul Lacey and I'm on each and every week. I don't know why he puts up with us, but he does. Thank you, Paul. Very much appreciated and Bernard.
And young cock. I don't know if you've got anything you want to add. We're trying to keep these bits of banter down to a minimum, but if you've got anything that you want to add about this week or something, feel free, go for it. That's a no, that's it. Big fat? No. Okay, perfect. In which case we'll end it, I'll ask you three, if you wouldn't mind just sticking on the line for a moment, but thanks for joining us.
We'll be back this time next week, 2:00 PM. UK time this week in WordPress, trying to hammer home that name so that it gets remembered. Cheers. Take it easy. Oh,
Jan Koch: [01:13:30] I.
Support WP Builds
We put out this content as often as we can, and we hope that you like! If you do and feel like keeping the WP Builds podcast going then...