DevChat meeting summary – January 13, 2021

Thanks to @thewebprincess and @metalandcoffee for leading the 05:00 UTC and 20:00 UTC devchat meetings this week.

Slack discussion for the 05:00 meeting

Slack discussion for the 20:00 meeting 


  1. Core Editor Improvement: Drag & Drop Blocks and Patterns from the Inserter. You can now drag and drop blocks and blockBlock Block is the abstract term used to describe units of markup that, composed together, form the content or layout of a webpage using the WordPress editor. The idea combines concepts of what in the past may have achieved with shortcodes, custom HTML, and embed discovery into a single consistent API and user experience. patterns from the inserter. You will need the GutenbergGutenberg The Gutenberg project is the new Editor Interface for WordPress. The editor improves the process and experience of creating new content, making writing rich content much simpler. It uses ‘blocks’ to add richness rather than shortcodes, custom HTML etc. pluginPlugin A plugin is a piece of software containing a group of functions that can be added to a WordPress website. They can extend functionality or add new features to your WordPress websites. WordPress plugins are written in the PHP programming language and integrate seamlessly with WordPress. These can be free in the Plugin Directory or can be cost-based plugin from a third-party
  2. A Week in Core – January 11, 2020 for a summary on the activity in the team.
  3. Recap and proposal: align the WordPress release cycle with the industry standard. There are two proposed solutions. Questions from @francina: Do you have question about those? Do you want to discuss them here? Do you prefer to leave comments? 
    4. Editor chat summary: Wednesday, 13 January 2021

Upcoming Releases


  • @timothybjacobs: on the spread of releases between four and six per year, time for recovery, wait between releases for a feature which misses a release date, impact of ‘sitting out a release’ in the event of a six per year cycle. Suggestion of a 2 month release cycle, followed by a 4 month cycle? To get an idea of what it might feel like without jumping straight to 6 a year
  • @francina: it’s four and not more because the rationale is to increase incrementally and not in one go… Predictability is key and having a calendar shared well in advance is also important
  • @sarahricker: pace should pick up now people are back from holiday and getting into a rhythm for four releases a year will help
  • to be able to get four releases in 2021, we should start to prepare next release (squad, goals, etc) as soon as the current release is branched (end of alpha cycle)
  • almost like you need a A team/B team to tick/tock the releases
  • @francina: this calendar was proposed by me to Matt at WCUS2019 and published only after his approval. 2020 has been rough and personally I don’t think we made all the preparations necessary to add a release. Life got in the way. I don’t think 5.7 should be taken as an example for how releases might be done for the rest of the year. Described it as a transition release
  • @Whyisjake: coming back just after the holidays is part of the issue. The issue is not as much about number of relea@whyisjakeWhyisjake: coming back just after the holidays is part of the issue. The issue is not as much about number of releases, but:
    • identify bottlenecks
    • clarify expectations
    • communicate the schedule in advance
    • pick a procedure, ANY procedure, and stick to it long enough to test it out

Extra help needed for 5.7

@webcommsat asked: Do we know the specific areas where more contribution is needed? Knowing where the gaps are for contributors can help with potential recruitment/ encouragement to support those areas. A lot of people who volunteered/ showed interest for a release may be interested/ available to help, but not know where to start. Perhaps some of them could be approached and if their skills/ interests match, could be asked to help in the specific areas where we are short.

@francina: Everyone can contribute to a WP release at any time, in any field they are interested in.

@chloe Bringmann: I think calling out the need each focus has for volunteers is a good first step. I am happy to help connect people to projects. It isn’t a long term solution so I welcome thought partnership on future engagement plans.

Areas identified in the meeting as needing more contributors:

  • @sarahricker: accessibilityAccessibility Accessibility (commonly shortened to a11y) refers to the design of products, devices, services, or environments for people with disabilities. The concept of accessible design ensures both “direct access” (i.e. unassisted) and “indirect access” meaning compatibility with a person’s assistive technology (for example, computer screen readers). ( could use some recruitment
  • @johnbillion: testing
  • @estelaris: add more sessions for combined a11yAccessibility Accessibility (commonly shortened to a11y) refers to the design of products, devices, services, or environments for people with disabilities. The concept of accessible design ensures both “direct access” (i.e. unassisted) and “indirect access” meaning compatibility with a person’s assistive technology (for example, computer screen readers). (
  • @noisysocks: editor (GB) needs help
  • @metalandcoffee: coreCore Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress. editor could use some help
    • for a better understanding of what we did and what we need to do, @hellofromtonya shared some stats from TracTrac An open source project by Edgewall Software that serves as a bug tracker and project management tool for WordPress.. This is what has been discussed. Three weeks to BetaBeta A pre-release of software that is given out to a large group of users to trial under real conditions. Beta versions have gone through alpha testing in-house and are generally fairly close in look, feel and function to the final product; however, design changes often occur as part of the process.  1 (Feb 2).
      Progress has been very light, though normal for year-end. Ramp up after the holidays/year end has been slow.
    • Scrub participation has been very very light sometimes 
    • 64 tickets closed or ready for commit
    • 68 features and enhancements still open that have a hard-stop on Beta 1 [ report ]
    • stats posted for 5.7
  • @francina: Hence the discussion about what goes into Beta and what doesn’t. When defect work happens and where feature work happens. This is are not theoretical exercises about naming conventions in web development. Clarifying what gets done and when, helps contributors and the plugin and themes ecosystem to know when WordPress is tested ‘enough’ to work on their own products

    @hellofromtonya: shared a concern discussed in the APAC-friendly dev chat. Do you think it’s reasonable for everyone to switch gears at Beta 1 to shift from the current release directly into the next release cycle? Or do you think contributors need a break and time to ramp down and then ramp up back up again?
  • @audrasjb: it really depends on the individual

    Discussion on an additional bugbug A bug is an error or unexpected result. Performance improvements, code optimization, and are considered enhancements, not defects. After feature freeze, only bugs are dealt with, with regressions (adverse changes from the previous version) being the highest priority. scrub:
  • @metalandcoffee: do you think we should add an additional bug scrub per week with 68 bugs still being open? Not sure how helpful that would be.
  • @audrasjb: features and enhancements are our main goal for now. As always, we won’t get everything committed in time, but it would be nice if components maintainers could help on those features/enhancements. And speaking of testing, it’s especially needed for those tickets
  • @hellofromtonya: participation in the scrubs has been very light throughout 5.7. I don’t think adding another will help.
  • Scrubs are specifically focused on features and enhancements
  • @francina: Test scrubs should be back on Friday. @monikarao is preparing a list of tickets

WordPress 5.6.1 news

@audrasjb: 5.6.1 Trac update:

  • 52 tickets in the milestone
  • 23 are closed as fixed
  • 11 are fixed in trunktrunk A directory in Subversion containing the latest development code in preparation for the next major release cycle. If you are running "trunk", then you are on the latest revision. but waiting for proper backportbackport A port is when code from one branch (or trunk) is merged into another branch or trunk. Some changes in WordPress point releases are the result of backporting code from trunk to the release branch. in branchbranch A directory in Subversion. WordPress uses branches to store the latest development code for each major release (3.9, 4.0, etc.). Branches are then updated with code for any minor releases of that branch. Sometimes, a major version of WordPress and its minor versions are collectively referred to as a "branch", such as "the 4.0 branch". 5.6.1
  • 18 are still in the to do list (not committed/closed/reopened for backport)
  • the idea is to release by the end of January 2021, probably around the 24 or 26
  • a post will be published very soon on Make/Core with more details.

Updates from the Component Maintainers and Focus Leads

@sergey: Build/Test Tools, General, I18Ni18n Internationalization, or the act of writing and preparing code to be fully translatable into other languages. Also see localization. Often written with a lowercase i so it is not confused with a lowercase L or the numeral 1. Often an acquired skill., Date/Time, Permalinks: No major news this week.

@audrasjb: circling back to 5.7, I forgot to share my quick Docs update, for those interested:

  • 29 tickets marked as `needs-dev-note`
  • 10 of them are already closed as fixed
  • the traditional Dev Notesdev note Each important change in WordPress Core is documented in a developers note, (usually called dev note). Good dev notes generally include a description of the change, the decision that led to this change, and a description of how developers are supposed to work with that change. Dev notes are published on Make/Core blog during the beta phase of WordPress release cycle. Publishing dev notes is particularly important when plugin/theme authors and WordPress developers need to be aware of those changes.In general, all dev notes are compiled into a Field Guide at the beginning of the release candidate phase. spreadsheet will be started in a couple days
  • 4 tickets are marked as `needs-docs`, and more to come.
  • will try to pay some attention on updating the HelpHub documentation



  • Design: still getting my bearings as I was only inducted a few days ago but we’re working through the design-related tickets, some are already set for dev, and some are on their way there

Upgrade/Install/Core auto-updates (@audrasjb)


  • Menus: nothing new, except I have 1 ticket ready for commit
  • WidgetWidget A WordPress Widget is a small block that performs a specific function. You can add these widgets in sidebars also known as widget-ready areas on your web page. WordPress widgets were originally created to provide a simple and easy-to-use way of giving design and structure control of the WordPress theme to the user.: nothing new

Open floor

Kelly: would like some attention on #49999 and the linked PR. It’s apart of a larger project to clean up the adminadmin (and super admin) CSSCSS Cascading Style Sheets. code and to standardize the color palette used across all screens.

@ryelle the PR is to reduce the number of colors used in wp-admin’s CSS. It’s part of the work on ticket #49999, but the PR has a more concise description (the ticket is a larger project). There are also some before & after screenshots.