Show Highlights

Rob Cairns sits down to talk about Gutenberg with Birgit Pauli-Haack.

Highlights:

  1. Birgit’s move to Automatic.
  2. How Gutenberg times came to be.
  3. Why you should move your WordPress site to Gutenberg.
  4. Trends in Gutenberg.
  5. Full Site Editing.

Show Notes

00:00

From the center of the universe, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. This is the SDM show with your host Rob Cairns. The SDM show focuses on business life productivity, digital marketing, WordPress and more. Sit back, relax, grab your favorite drink and enjoy the show. Here is Rob.

 

00:18

Hey, I’m Rob Cairns. Here. I’m the founder, CEO and Chief creator of amazing ideas at Stunning Digital Marketing. I hope everybody’s having an amazing day. In today’s podcast, I sit down with my friend Birgit Pauli-Haack, the founder of Gutenberg times and the Gutenberg change log. And we talk about of course, all things Gutenberg. Sit down, relax and enjoy this amazing conversation.

 

00:55

Everybody, Rob Cairns here, I’m here with my friend Birgit Pauli-Haack, otherwise known as the one new does Gutenberg times and the Gutenberg Change Log? How are you today Birgit?

 

01:06

Well, hi, Robert. I’m well, I’m well, I was really excited to talk to you today. So thanks for inviting me.

 

01:15

Yeah, I knew I knew you’re welcome. And you’ve had a lot of changes, because you’re now working with automatic director, you want to tell us a little bit about that.

 

01:25

That’s true. And before that, I moved by how our household from Naples to Sarasota, Florida. And then I accepted the offer from automatic to be a developer advocate for WordPress, and continue to do the work on the Gutenberg times and change log and doing presentations. But now I’m getting paid for it. And that’s a wonderful development. And I’m so grateful for automatic to give me that opportunity.

 

01:56

Near the end, I can’t think of anybody better to be a developer advocate, honestly, you’re so we were saying in the pre show, I think you’re so open to so much. And that’s a big benefit to the community. So so you know, thank you for taking that on.

 

02:14

Thank you. That’s a sweet to say that.

 

02:16

Oh, you’re welcome. What is the cultural automatic? Like you’ve only been there three or four weeks? How are you fitting in? And how is that? How’s that going?

 

02:25

It’s going very well. It’s a lot to read. And there’s a lot of communication going on. That’s because it’s a remote company. Everybody’s remote. Everybody’s on a different. Not everybody in a different timezone. But you deal with timezone issues. And it’s pretty much because of the new team. I love the team. I think n and McCarthy has been in in the community quite a bit already for a year, so has Daisy Olson. And I’m with me also Ryan Belcher joined the team at automatic for developer advocacy. And so we are all pretty much on a team that chooses their own adventures. So um, yeah, and is definitely the spearheaded the FSC, the full set editing program. Ryan started out was doing live. Coding on Twitch AI, people should check out. Yeah, I do the good times, Stacy is doing workshops with with theme developers. So there’s all kinds of different things. And then, of course, we will support the upcoming release of WordPress 5.9. That’s coming out in December December 14, if you want to put it in your calendar.

 

03:56

And I’m better in December than right before Black Friday or Cyber Monday, just from a change standpoint. Right. December by by the time we hit December 14. I mean, we’re we’re pretty well into the holiday season. And I think that’s a better timing. Personally. Yeah. try and do it in October.

 

04:20

Oh, yeah. Yeah, definitely. But yeah, it’s, I think the last four years there has been a December release. And the world didn’t stop and the internet didn’t break and whoever needed to have the site up and don’t want to deal with an update, just kind of push it into January. There’s not a whole lot of that is missed in those two, four weeks.

 

04:45

I’ve actually pushed the mine the last couple years I’ve pushed mine to the week after Christmas just to get out of the Christmas ecosystem I have. I have a couple big WooCommerce clients and the last thing they need is risk of a major update going in. Yeah. And I make that decision. I’ve actually gone in Tom, my, any website I maintain, and I’ve got over 100 websites on security updates at this point that I manage. And yeah, I’ve actually turned off all the automatic updates. I there’s no way no how. I’m a big believer that I need to do a manual backup before I do a major update. And that’s Yeah, the way it is.

 

05:30

Totally. If you have that amount of clients, you definitely have to do due diligence and keep yourself sane, and not run into issues that you are not surprised.

 

05:44

With. Absolutely. Yeah. It’s so true. What are we at now, WordPress, depending on who you listen to is about 43 44%. of the website market on the internet. Is that still about riders?

 

05:58

Yeah, that’s about right. I look at the W three tech beta. And it’s, I think, at four point 6% right now. So coming up on 43.

 

06:15

And I think we, you know, not that I want to go down this road for the purposes podcast. But I think we also got to stop dispelling the notion that WordPress is insecure. I mean, what let’s be pretty honest. There was, at that time, a diss record, there was a vulnerability announced with ninja forms yesterday that came out. It’s already been patched. I mean, the reality is, once you get into the, the 43% range, you just become more of a attempt for hackers. Because you’re, you’re now getting market share. And the other reality is, as we’re in this pandemic, right now, all the hackers are sitting at home, and they’re as bored as we are. So what a born hackers, do? They find ways to get into trouble.

 

07:05

Yeah, I think you’re right. Yeah, the, the attack, kind of it’s when Microsoft was the target of a lot of malware for operating systems. WordPress is now kind of the Microsoft of the 21st century, in that regard. But I I’m the security problems that I faced when I was working with client sites, and we had quite a few. We’re always on plugins that weren’t updated. And very insecure passwords. So they will, yeah, the hackers were able to get in on an administrator level. And then of course, all bets are off. So it’s definitely those two things are I think about 95% of the breaches, arm, kind of user, inflicted, so to speak, or whoever maintains a website down.

 

08:10

I would agree with that. And then the other thing that always bugged me, and we were talking in your pre show how I’m a little bit technical, my my background, before I got into marketing, and website is actually very high level programming. And then very high level tech support. And one of the things I always find is, with backups is people say to me, I’ve got a backup and I say to them, have you ever attempted restore that backup? And many, many people think they have backups, and they don’t have restores, or they get into situations where I don’t know if you’ve been following this, the state of the host out of Quebec called wh C in the Montreal area, where somebody went through the backup server as well. So Oh, no, yeah.

 

09:02

Yeah, that’s not good. Yeah. So yeah, we were we were actually we’re doing this was our client side, wider, big level of backup. And that one is the hosting company, of course. So we pay for that, because that’s the fastest restore, right? But then we also have an off site. Backup twice. Yeah. So we, we run the backup through a service. And always test the Restore. I think every three months we test restores of backups on a staging server. Just to be sure that there’s still everything is working out. But you’re right. Backup without the Restore doesn’t really help you.

 

09:56

Does Roy help you? So let’s move on to what I really wanted. Talk about and that was your involvement in the Gutenberg community and you create a Gutenberg times and the Gutenberg change org to two things that I absolutely love. I often watch the times though either or on a replay. And we were talking earlier, I’ve got to change log podcast on my on my smartphone. So it’s an in my podcast catcher, which is pocket casts, which is another automatic company just for interest. Why did you create Gutenberg times? And how did that all come about? Oh,

 

10:35

that takes us back to Europe 2017 at wordcamp Europe, there was the first kind of video demo video of the block editor during the talk, or the conversation that Matt Mullenweg had with Matt and I was absolutely floored how that looked and how it worked. And I wanted to learn all about it. And I’ve found that there were there was quite a few early adopters were quite buzzing around the internet. And I was capturing that and how they’re thinking about it, how they’re working with it. So just for myself, I built a so called story phi, which was a service that was available back then where you just it was kind of an embed on one page, you kind of could embed Twitter’s feed credit tweets and then blog posts that were nicely pulled in and other links and you could add text to it. So it was a very fast curation system. And I was doing that starting that end of June 2017 and by the time wordcamp us came it had quite the following and but what also happened was that Adobe who was the owner of story fi announced the end of life for that tool for next for the next year though I think in spring and and then other people from the team said well you should have a newsletter to update people. So I kind of thought okay, maybe I should do this more professionally, kind of or pick a website and do it through a website to be on safe ground because it was built on rented land and whatever happened what always happens on rented land, you kind of get screwed, right?

 

12:46

Yeah, I’ve had that discussion with many a client over the years so

 

12:52

so yeah, in January 2018 I started I got my domain name and then created the website and um, and then pull in some of the story fi updates and kept doing what I was doing there. And so I started a newsletter I think in that Yeah, like April or May or something like that of 2018 and yeah, that’s fine we come about Yeah, it was about 100 and I don’t know 180 posts later or something

 

13:34

I’ll come out to well all too well on now on. And it’s kind of like for me it’s one of my go to spot too many people in the WordPress community for Gutenberg information. You’ve had some amazing guests on the times over the year. I mean, yeah, you know, and, and the one thing I like with her community and I’ve always liked is, can you imagine and I do a lot of work in the marketing community as well and the marketers they’re not so giving of their time and they don’t share information the way the WordPress people do

 

14:12

know, it’s amazing. Yeah, you’re right. And in

 

14:15

our community, we’re also willing to say, you know, this is this is where we’re at and this is an I need help and you know, I think of my move to Castro’s which we’re talking about this a podcast, and I reached out to several people and said, What do you think I should do people and you know, people are more than willing to share their time or their stories or, or what I needed to help me out and that’s pretty amazing. So

 

14:45

yeah, and I’m glad you do mention our live q&a is on the YouTube channel. They are you right there. We had some amazing people there from the community talking about how they adopt Gutenberg or from the developer per team, like the last few were all about the new theme, building experience that people are going to have with full site editing a theme Jason on that. And we will have another one, if I may say it. So October 7, at 16 UTC, which is at noon, eastern time, with three amazing theme builders that have already gone full site editing with their newest theme. And it’s carlina naimark. And Ellen Bower from New Zealand, and unders Noren who did the 2020 theme, default theme, he also finished just as full, and they’re going full side editing, they’re going blog parents, and they had both, or all three of them that had kind of a two year ramp up experience from that, because I think the first time on the live q&a, we talked about full set editing was in January 2020. With Enrique Perez, who was a developer at that time, and it’s, so I’m looking very much forward to that conversation. Because those are three different theme developers that are going that route that are not on the Gutenberg team, and they are not working for automatic, they are all there in the community and sharing their their work. And selling it, of course, but so it’s also a business kind of conversation that we will have, in at least one one aspect, like, what is it like to have to chase all the changes?

 

16:56

Yeah. So it’s a lot of work. What is your take? burger Don false identity do? Do you think it’s a positive move? I know, there’s been some controversy about it. How do you feel about it?

 

17:11

Well, I, I feel about that it kind of will open up scene building for many, many more people. And it’s, a lot of users really want that, that they can decide on how they do templating. Yeah, I’ve I know of one person who has a blog. But she blogs are different kinds of things. One of them is about a one section is about mental health. The other one is just about family and photography. And then the third one is about WordPress. And if she could have for each, each of those sections, different layouts, then she wouldn’t need to have three different sites or she can have just keep people on on the one section of the end, they don’t have to deal with all the other non related content that’s on her on her blog. So I think that is really a path forward. I have seen quite a lot of site owners who wanted to change how the query block or how the query the list of their posts, actually, they wanted to remove the date, they wanted to remove the author, they want to have the feature image bigger and the text less. And they always had to go back to the theme developers to make that happen, or, or hack in the theme themselves. But now they can do it just through the template editor that will come out and decide how their blog lists or look should look. They can say okay, on this, I have multiple pages that have different blog posts. Yeah. So one is the recipe for fish. The other one is a recipe for salad, and have different summary pages that come together and can really create their own publishing experience. And I think that the market is ripe. And we know the proliferation of page builders in the WordPress community was in the last five years. It was huge. Yeah, so we know that that is wanted by users. It’s also good to get the standardized in the core. And it’s still in development. So it’s still not kind of up to par with page builders or something like that. But it shows already the way we’re going. And the theme developers on some of the theme developers are really happy that they can actually give some of The users under a different way to change colors and the global settings and and all that. So I’m I think it’s a very positive development. And it’s pretty much the second phase that was announced by monomeric. Several state of the word ago, the three, the four phases of Gutenberg. One was the post editor. Phase Two is the full set editing, that comes to pass and of, yeah, it’s not quite clear what will be in 5.9, but it will be in 5.9, and 6.00. And then the third phase is the collaborative editing part like Google Docs, like collaborative editing, which is what? A lot of people are waiting for that. And then the fourth one is the multi language site. Out of the, out of the box for WordPress, which has been a long time coming, I don’t know, 18 years or so coming?

 

21:04

Yeah, it’s been, I mean, to do multi language, you got to go to something like WP ml or, you know, or some plugin and it’s, it’s just overhead. And I personally think one of the best reasons to go to Gutenberg is speed. I mean, Page Builder blow is getting ridiculous. So page builders are great. They do a lot of good stuff. But from a speed perspective, what a difference. I mean, if you go to Gutenberg, you will speed up your website, there’s no question. And I think that alone in the days of everybody trying to get a speed increase, because we all no speed is a factor in SEO rankings. And so I think that’s a big help, right?

 

21:54

It’s seven, a big cup. And I but I also see that that’s just a kind of a time thing i am i’m sure the page builders will figure out how to make this faster. In their own little environment there. So

 

22:10

yeah, they they will now somebody wanted to. And I know in our community, the community still spoiled. There’s a pile of people who love Gutenberg. And there’s a pile of people hate Gutenberg. There’s a well known podcaster, who I really don’t want to mention his name that doesn’t like Matt Mullenweg I, I have nothing but the most respect for Matt, personally, I had the pleasure of meeting map at a WordPress meetup in Toronto, he came into town for one of our meetups, probably four or five years ago, I have the utmost respect for what he’s done for our community. There’s all kinds of people who are bought on the classicpress bandwagon, which is still young minor. What’s your take on all of that?

 

23:07

Well, it’s some Choose Your Own Adventure kind of way. And I, what I see is that the discussion about Gutenberg comes up every six or eight months, again, with another wave of people coming in and saying, okay, I haven’t done it before. But now I’m looking at it. And I should have done it a year ago, kind of thing. We see those posts all the time on, on Twitter or on some comments, on blogs, and it’s just, the change is hard. And sometimes you don’t have the time to invest to actually wrap your head around some things. And yeah, most people that are in the business are not in the business of creating content. So they, they are more like the managing content, but they are not the the creators, the ones that get their hands dirty and have to pull great content day after day after day. And for those Gutenberg is a godsend because they don’t have to learn a different interface. They can switch themes, themes, yeah, there were some page builders that had only shortcuts, short codes in there, and you couldn’t change the theme. Because the theme was tied to the page builder and all that there’s a lot of adventure out there. That was a little bit sidetracking and, but it’s in phases yet there is a curve from adopting new technologies. And that’s, you probably heard it’s called day one. Group is the innovators. So those are the ones that are producing things. And then comes the early adopters. And then comes the early majority, and then comes the late majority. And then comes the the laggards, so to speak. And I think we are kind of now in the early majority is already there. Not every I am, I have customers who you are not going to Gutenberg, because their site as it’s set up right now, doesn’t work with it. Yeah. And they don’t, they don’t have the funding, or to revamp the website to make it good ready. And they also don’t see the value, that additional value that would come with it. So that’s certainly a very good business decision.

 

25:59

You have to kind of choose your choose your poison, so to speak. I mean, I know we were talking in the pre show, I’m in the middle of a Gutenberg move. Somebody’s going, Hey, it’s going. I have, I have over 200 blog posts. So right now I’m in the middle of moving the blog post to box, I haven’t shifted the theme or the page builder. So I’m doing it in stages. And then I’m going to build a staging site, and then redo the services pages. And the reason I’ve chosen this type of mode is it’s also a good time to clean up. So there’s no point in moving old stuff, if it’s not relevant anymore. And I actually I’m kind of all in with candidates and Kansas box right now. And I’m really, I’m really enjoying the move. It’s it’s an easy move. It’s just a time consuming move. And But that said, I’ve got clients that are on page editors, and they’re doing all their blog posts in Gutenberg, they actually find Gutenberg so much easier than the classic editor to write a blog post. And that’s, yeah, me the big deal here is how do your clients find,

 

27:24

right? Yeah, I did in Fall 2018? Yes, 2018 I did a demonstration of Gutenberg, because it was coming to core. So I think December 2008, December 2018. It came into core and I did a presentation at a nonprofit Technology Conference about concentration with the block editor and why it’s coming, what it’s doing. And then I did some demos. And I had about 40 people in there that were all kind of Whoa, you don’t need a PhD anymore to create content in WordPress or when is it coming Can I use it now is that Yeah, there were really so I’m expectant of really pleasantly surprised how WordPress changes from that very hard classic editor to the very pleasantly easy to use Gutenberg. That’s what I meant those that were the people were I that I had in mind when I was starting with the Gutenberg was kind of writing about Gutenberg in early on because I saw the the sprinkler or the sparkle in people’s eyes when they see how they can use it down so I’m not surprised that you say it’s easier because as a blogger doing it every day, what you could consider or your listeners might consider there are a few converters to blocks available as plugins so that you can say, okay, convert everything two blocks from my classic content. They are still with a grain of salt but you at least get the most of the thing done. And you can do your your editing a little later and say, Okay, yeah, even if it’s converted, I’m not gonna keep that post that content audit that you’re doing at the same time, but you could probably save yourself some time using one of the block by block converters, and I can share the link with it. That’s the WP tavern. Justin tadlock did a comparison between he has this nice ask the bartender, kind of post once in a while. And this one he did a comparison between three plugins one is but block converter that’s from by organic themes, they had to do it for a client of their so they open it up to and share it with the community. And then 10 up has convert to blocks plugin on GitHub. And then there was another one by Frank Klein, who also has a hit a website by convert to blogspot. I just saw, it’s not working anymore. So strike that.

 

30:45

Yeah. And thank you for sharing the link. And I’ll share that in the show notes for anybody that would like the problem I’ve had. Silly me is I did all my blog posts and my page builders. So you know what, you know what fun I’m having in the middle of this conversion? Oh,

 

31:04

yeah. Yeah, of course that only convert from, from classic editor kind of thing, not from page builders. Yeah. And further down in the comments of that post, you also see a new spec content converter, that standard by automatic, who who have that news pack is a site for local news. And so yeah, it’s definitely worth looking into, before you get started on converting 400 blog posts by hand.

 

31:44

Well, as I say, it’s a good time to do a content audit. I think, I think one of the biggest problem that bloggers do or people in your business do is they don’t look at your website I did. The last one I did was two and a half years ago. And when I when I actually made a move away, I don’t do traditional blogging, like many people anymore, I typically on my business, I do podcasts, so I, I have video, so I haven’t written a full length blog post in three years. And I okay, I made that decision. So I did a content purge the last time and I’m gonna do another one this time, and it’s just, but people need to start looking at doing things like that as they move forward. Oh, yeah, absolutely. And use that as an opportunity. Now as somebody wants to learn Gutenberg or want to get into it besides the times in the changelog, which I think they should go to anyway. What are some other good sources for people to get started?

 

32:44

Well, I saw that easy, wp guide.com has just updated their tutorials and they’re on whispers 5.8. wordpress. So this is the most up to date. Way to to learn about Gutenberg blocks, you can of course, also go to the wordpress.org support forums, articles there is that has a lot of documentation about it. But because it’s volunteer run, it might not be up to the latest WordPress version, but it definitely gets you started. There’s also a WP beginner, definitely has a good article about how to use the block editor from the content creation part. And I’m forgetting one source right now, but yeah, sorry.

 

33:56

That’s okay. that’s a that’s a good start. I think. I think the biggest thing with what people should do is if they’re not sure, create a test site. And then and, and honestly jump in and play with it. I mean, that’s one of the reasons why I decided to make the move, I guess about a month ago or about five weeks ago and said I need I need to go in with this. And you know, we were talking earlier, one of my big pushes, was I was sitting on the fence and I sat and watched a webinar that Spencer formatted. And I’ve said dispenser both publicly and privately, thank you for the push because that’s the push I needed. And yeah, and I for me, I’m just, I’m just fall in I mean, I have a basic personal site. There’s no page editor on that one. It’s actually running Astra and cadence box and I’ve said well My stack is from my, my business site. And I think in the long run, I’ll be much better off doing the not doing it personally. But that’s, you know, yeah,

 

35:11

yeah, you definitely future proof all your sites by making the switch now, even if you’re kind of not using all the bells and whistles. But getting away from a page builder being understand the standard WordPress outlet or software version. I think future proves definitely your online business. Yeah, yeah,

 

35:39

it was funny. I was thinking back the other day did the history themes and I don’t know if you were familiar, before they got into all their money problems with a product called headway themes. And yeah, and headway, in essence, built the wrong type of block system at the time. And I don’t know if he ever used it

 

36:03

a little bit before my time.

 

36:05

And it was, I think, they were kind of throwing something out there that the bulk of the market was ready for at the time. So I think they again, they were an innovator, but we all know in products the right place and the right time and and they got in the money problems for a number of reasons if anybody ever wants to revisit that. Jeff Chandler had written some articles when he was involved with WP Tavern or are in the archives at a tavern. So I don’t want to dredge that story back up. But why I mentioned headway is they had a internal block based system way ahead of the Gutenberg system. Oh, yeah.

 

36:52

Yeah, versus coming really late to the game. Yeah, medium is block based. Yeah. Adobe’s spark is a block based system. And I forgot that few others that had gone blog based on many, many years ago. So the concept of block based editors, or block based content creation, MailChimp went block based, several years ago. So I think the only the WordPress space has not seen block based editing. That’s why the discussion is still ongoing. Yeah. But for the for the business world that have dealt with other content management systems. It’s clear that block based is the way to go. Yeah. So I’m not surprised that there was already someone doing blog based content in the WordPress space. But of course, the discussion was not there yet.

 

38:00

And to be frank, another open source, CMS Joomla is headed towards Gutenberg as well, from what I’ve read. So they’re all in with a Gutenberg type system themselves. So I mean,

 

38:15

yeah, so it’s Drupal. Actually,

 

38:17

I didn’t know that. That’s, that’s interesting. So So where do you see somebody that’s really involved deep in in Gutenberg for a long time, where do you see Gutenberg going in the long term?

 

38:32

Well, it’s definitely have will spark some additional creativity in the space in terms of design in terms of Yeah, going back to the theme designing rather than programming part. And the designers are really excited about it, that they can concentrate on the design of things and not so much about making it easy for other people because your block patterns is going really well. And there’s Noren his new theme, and the web tab. And Justin tadlock, also wrote about it. It comes with 40 block patterns. That’s kind of the most surprising thing is how block patterns really takes off. And the meta team on wordpress.org is now working. They have released the block parent directory couple months ago, with about 84 block patterns does translation have translated into, I think five or 10 languages already? And yeah, that it will come. So the next step would be full page layouts that come with themes as block parents. And so someone who needs to create content can look through the list of block patterns. Just grab the one that will fit the content that they need, and then just fill in the blanks, change out one picture or something like that, and then be so much faster with content creation. That’s one part. And then for bigger teams, the comm collaborative editing is definitely going to be there. For those, so they don’t have to have other outside tools to use, they can use it right there in their website. I also see that Alaska his train of thought, sorry,

 

40:41

I should tell you, I show up block pattern sets. If you know, to me, that’s one of the most compelling features that for me makes design so much easier. And the other thing is some of the templating features and the fact you can create reusable blocks. And yeah, yeah, I think mastering reusable blocks would make people’s lives so much easier.

 

41:05

Yeah, absolutely. And template parts. And the thought that I lost is back. And what the meta team is working on now is that you can submit as a designer, your, your, your block patterns to the directory, so it can help other people. Yeah, kind of you, every every represe users can see block patterns, you don’t have to go to through the effort to do themes and all that. And the next part is what a lot of site implementers probably don’t know yet. But that’s definitely in the works is that you can export a theme with the templates that you created in on one side, exported and uploaded to a different site. Yes, so you can have your, your starter theme, so to speak, and then adopted to whatever the the need of that new site is, and you’re going from zero to release in a much shorter timeframe than before.

 

42:13

It’s so true. It’s it’s the same idea where a lot of people in design, create a starter site, and then they use a migration tool to dump it in. To me, this just makes that so much easier.

 

42:29

Yeah. And with a templating engine, then there will also be the so some of the core committers are also discussing Starter Content for themes. So when you have four vertical, yeah, certain pages that are kind of pre loaded that only need to be updated from from the copy part. Yeah, those things will definitely be easier with the full side editing environment than before.

 

43:03

Yeah, I would agree. You know, it’s amazing where we’ve come with this. I mean, as as we talked about earlier, two years ago, I remember one word camp for when Gutenberg was announced to go into core at wordcamp, us three years ago, and we had Toronto’s word camp was the week before wordcamp. us. And there was all kinds of concern over Gutenberg and the lights and the adult likes. And I think now, I think people would be better off personally, having played with as much as I have lately, just embracing it. If I had had Gutenberg, the way it is now, four years ago, I probably would have made the move away from a page builder four years ago. So I think they would be better off going that way in the long run.

 

43:59

But yeah, yeah, well, I totally agree. But everybody knew that who knows a little bit about me. Yeah, we do. Don’t wait. Yeah, the December six, there was wordcamp us and it was the day before the word computer started. And I was in the sponsor Hall because I was part of the organizing team and I and the sponsor team and then there were I remember there was Gary Pendergast. JOHN de Rosa, Willem Earhart, and Tammy Lister. Were sitting on one of the tables a little bit to the side. And somewhere I heard they’re releasing word personnel. And it was such a such an anti climax moment. Yeah, I know. Okay. Normally there would have been kind of fireworks everywhere and everywhere had celebration, and there was It all happened on the internet. It didn’t break, but it will also not. I had hoped for a lot more champagne or something like that. But there was was just the unassuming way. Yeah, we were releasing WordPress and that’s what we do today. Very interesting.

 

45:19

Yeah. For me it was anti climatic because as I say, wordcamp Toronto was the week before. And I had had conversation with some people in the Toronto WordPress community and I said that I know what’s going to happen at wordcamp us. So I dropped into the hallway, grabbed my smartphone, jumped on the Facebook Live and said, guess what, folks? Whether you like it or not, Gutenberg is gonna drop next weekend at wordcamp. us. And I should tell you, the hate mail I got burned. Oh my god, I’m sorry. It’s okay. It was I don’t steer away from controversy. But I also don’t steer away from saying the right thing that matters. And that was the right thing. At the time. It was like, the dust was in the air. The rumors were all there. And you know, and I had big discussion with some people, you know, in the Tron community and said, Oh, I’m gonna make a call, it’s gonna drop next week, and then we all know what happened and, and the rest is kind kinda history

 

46:20

is the internet didn’t break. No, the

 

46:24

internet doesn’t break. I think I think people just need to get with the program. One thing I was gonna say was being a guy who does all the WooCommerce stuff. And I know our mutual friend, Bob Dunn, runs the amazing dude, woo, podcast. And we, we’ve had discussion I’ve had with Bob over Gutenberg many times. And I have to tell you, Gutenberg makes doing WooCommerce much easier. From my perspective. It really does.

 

46:57

Oh, I imagine that it does, yeah. But they haven’t embraced the blocks completely yet. Because they still want to do some amazing things in the user. Yeah, it’s not a very good experience to do products with Gutenberg right now. And they’re still doing it with the, with the classic editor. If you want to pull in the blocks or the products into blog posts and pages. Yeah, that’s where the block editor comes in. But to create those products, they’re still working with the, with the classic editor, and I saw in one of them there, an ether from the team actually published the roadmap when a WooCommerce is going through two blocks in in certain stages. So I’m trying to find it.

 

48:04

That’s okay. I mean, the Yeah, it’s a bit it’s a bit of a different and I think part of it is we just got to be careful, you’re, you’re dealing with WooCommerce. stores, you’re dealing with companies that are making money. I have one client right now. No word of it. He’s got 422 items in his WooCommerce. Store. So you got it. And he’s not move. He’s not bought in on Gutenberg yet, because he will wait for speed. But that’s a major migration for him. And that’s right. And that’s what we got to understand is, people still have businesses to run, especially running loose stores. It’s, it’s really hard doing that, and we just got to keep businesses running, and people gotta realize that so

 

48:56

yeah, yeah. And, and everybody can do this on their own time and has to do it. Yes, there is no sense in rushing things and everything. So I found the roadmap for WooCommerce. Block adoption. So peak in the WooCommerce, blocks, roadmap. And I, if you want to share that in your show notes, because he, he talks about the card and the checkout blocks, yeah. And then the some iteration on that. also publish the documentation and reach out to the marketplace for the developers to integrate the new checkout flow. Now, all that facade editing comes with the query blue block or the post list blank, it’s definitely going to be also a product block where you can have multiple different A product in a in summary or in kind of a grid or mosaic kind of things, and then the global science will come with the facade editing where you can change the color scheme and all the colors on with an interface on WooCommerce blog so that blog, blog post, blog and blog is kind of interesting is certainly worth reading for anybody who has a WooCommerce store or is helping other people with with the WooCommerce stores

 

50:40

i think you know, the chat you mentioned the checkout process walk and all of that and I think that’s one thing I really from my standpoint I hope they get right I’m checkout is always an issue we all know that we know the the easiest road to get somebody in a WooCommerce store to checkout is to make the checkout process as seamless and as easy as possible so so I think that’s one spot and I know there’s been some third party vendors have written several plugins for would kind of make that process more seamless. And there’s a lot of movement in that space but I mean I think we that’s something we got to get right so

 

51:26

yeah, cart abandonment is really critical issues. And whatever you can do to avoid that is definitely good for the bottom line.

 

51:38

Yeah, I always funny I was listening to our friend Jeff Chandler on WP main line and he was telling the story. I think he was saying how we recently how his wife will actually deliberately abandoned her cart, knowing she’s going to get a coupon in the mail in her email saying By the way, you know, if you go and buy this stuff or not 10% off I have to tell you, I’ve gotten recently to the same approach where I just let stuff sit there for 24 hours and let me let the store send me something and then I’ll take my discount and then buy it. Yeah. Yeah, it’s quite it’s called gamifying the system a little bit.

 

52:22

Yeah. Yeah, kind of playing it against it. Yeah. That’s quite legitimate to if you know that. Yeah. That’s kind of an insider. Move there.

 

52:34

Yeah, just though just so I want to thank you for your time I really enjoyed talking about Gutenberg and automatic if somebody wants to get ahold you what’s the best way?

 

52:46

Well, the best way is I’m on Twitter my Twitter handle is @BPH my initials. direct messaging is open if you don’t want to do publicly. I hang out on the WordPress slack. Also BPH is the handle they’re also their private messaging and you can always kind of ping me and I might not answer right away because depending on the timezone, but I always answer

 

53:23

as I said to you before, you’re one of the most approachable people I know, if anybody’s got to reach out. I, you know, I’ve, I’ve reached out over and you’re approachable. The slack beast, I was saying in a tweet this morning, I think I need to get off my, you know what, and get on there because I have avoided the slack beast like nothing. And, you know, having come from an original IRC background, I just decided I wasn’t gonna go down that road. And I’m almost at the position where because of all the WordPress chatter going on, on slack I, I have to get there and, and sort of say, I just need to do it.

 

54:09

Well, it’s about most of the contributors hang out there about 30,000 people in that. Or am I right? Maybe it’s more. Yeah. Yeah. And it’s, um, it’s easy to get a hold of somebody from the community. When you when you’re looking for something or when you want to put something together. It’s just very easy to to communicate what I strongly suggest that you not do because I did that and I was kind of floored. don’t join all the channels or all the channels that you think you want to just two or three or four main ones and then keep Keep your keep the firehose of, of messaging really low and switch off notifications. Yes, slack is asynchronous, like email, but without the effort of email that you need somebody’s email address or something like that. And there’s a lot of public discussion there. Yeah. Like, the core editor meeting is on Wednesday at 10am. Eastern, in the core dash editor channel, and it’s interesting to see to kind of listen through the read through the sale All Chat meetings. And to see if there’s something that you Yeah, they’re talking about. They’re coordinating the work. So you know, what’s in the works and what’s kind of coming out. But of course, it’s very technical. Yeah. And so there is no, there is no support on slack. Yeah, that’s also something that the support happens on the support forums on represent org. Yeah, still, yeah, there is no Slack channel for

 

56:10

No. And honestly, a really good good spot to get support is to jump on Twitter and use the hashtag WordPress and and ask your question, there’s a number of people on Twitter who will jump in and be helpful, absolutely help you out in the community. And, you know, I we said this earlier, in a podcast, it’s one of the things I like most about this community is getting help. And if you’re a Facebook person, I know you’re not. I know, I’m almost not, but for other reasons. I’m still there, but not really there. And I know, people like Bob Dunn or not Bob’s given up Facebook. There are a multitude of groups on Facebook, too, if people want to jump in, run by community members and guests. That’s correct. Yes. So there’s all kinds of ways to get help. burger. Thank you very much for your time. This has been an amazing conversation.

 

57:09

Thank you, Robert. It was really yeah, you said it was amazing. I’m really glad that we, we had this conversation today.

 

57:17

You have a wonderful day, and we’ll talk soon.

 

57:20

You too. Take care. Bye bye.

 

57:23

A very special thank you to Birgit for joining me on this edition of the SDM show. Talking all things Gutenberg was an amazing conversation and thanks for your time. It’s been much appreciated. Thank you for listening to this edition of the SDM show. This podcast is brought to you by Stunning Digital Marketing. For more information about Stunning Digital Marketing and Rob Cairns please go to stunningdigitalmarketing.info. This podcast is dedicated to Rob’s father Bruce Cairns, keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars make your business succeed. Bye for now.


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