FSE Program Site Editing Safari Summary

This post is a summary of the eleventh call for testing for the experimental FSE outreach program. Once again, I want to highlight the fantastic broader contributions surrounding this call for testing that enabled even more people to be a part of this work: 

Shout out to the following folks as first-time contributors to a call for testing: @colorful-tones @anjchang @mburridge @paulbigai @luminuu. Get excited – you now have a testing contributor badge on your WordPress profile! Thank you too to @piyopiyofox for kindly reviewing this post.

High-level summary

Here’s what a few folks had to say about the experience that can help frame the following more specific feedback. Overall, folks found the exploration to be easy enough to use with some minor enhancements and a few surprises. However, once most folks got beyond the basics, they found pitfalls in understanding how things might work together and how to accomplish different, slightly more complex tasks. This included everything from wanting more granular control of different link states with the Styles system (hover, active, etc) to confusion around how to change the width settings for new templates. This was the first time the Styles system was explored in a call for testing as well and, beyond a UXUX UX is an acronym for User Experience - the way the user uses the UI. Think ‘what they are doing’ and less about how they do it. issue mentioned by four folks and some feature requests, the feedback was generally uneventful and positive. 

This very much feels like where the state of the 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. and site editing is overall. Many pieces are exceptional, but after digging beneath the surface, you find that you need workarounds for some essential design needs.

@greenshady in this WP Tavern article.

As usual, with WordPress, also with bleeding edge experiments, it seems there is almost always a way to achieve the same result using different paths…Not had any crash or unattended interruption, so the current developing stage is showing a robust application. The improvements on each area done so far are impressive, sure we have tons of things and features to come.

@paulbigai in this comment.
Image of a homepage with black and white images arranged in a three column layout.

Confirmed bugs

Listed below are confirmed bugs that break expected functionality or the experience of different features. Thanks to this test running during the 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. cycle for 5.9, many of these are already fixed.


New Reports or previously reported

This resulted in the entire background of the posts list to change the background color. I was expecting that only the actual lists blocks would change when adjusting this setting, instead the entire page background of the query block changed.  

@luminuu in this comment.

The biggest, ahem, hiccup that I ran into wiped all of my progress when editing my headerHeader The header of your site is typically the first thing people will experience. The masthead or header art located across the top of your page is part of the look and feel of your website. It can influence a visitor’s opinion about your content and you/ your organization’s brand. It may also look different on different screen sizes.. I tried to transform one of the outer Group blocks into a Cover to give it a background. It wiped everything in the header area clean, and the “undo” button did not seem to work. I just started over.

@greenshady in this WP Tavern article.

Feature Requests

As folks dug in, there were numerous enhancements that quickly came to mind as awesome nice to haves. These desired enhancements not only underscores the potential of various full site editing pieces when put together, but also highlights the frustration around the current limitations:

I started by removing the Page List block from the Navigation menuNavigation Menu A theme feature introduced with Version 3.0. WordPress includes an easy to use mechanism for giving various control options to get users to click from one place to another on a site. in the header. I have 90+ pages on my install, and it is always irritating when themes list them all by default.

@greenshady in this WP Tavern post.

Post Featured Image selected I expected to see to see similar options as the Image block. Example Image size: Full Size, Large, Medium or Thumbnail.

@paaljoachim in this comment. 

I miss a way for Global Styles to have more granular control over the links states, for color and the style in general. We have only one setting for link color, nothing for hover, active and visited state, neither the possibility to change the style applied, with TT1 Blocks we have the theme default text-decoration-style: dotted; for instance.  

@paulbigai in this comment.

General Usability Feedback

Thanks to videos from a few folks as part of this call for testing, I’m including less issues and quotes and more descriptions in order to capture the great feedback that was shared. 

In @courane01‘s wonderful testing session, the Navigation block placeholder proved to be quite confusing when it comes to WYSIWG (what you see is what you getWhat You See Is What You Get What You See Is What You Get. Most commonly used in relation to editors, where changes made in edit mode reflect exactly as they will translate to the published page.), especially if you haven’t yet set a menu. There are improvements to this placeholder setup that are being iterated upon as I write this. Tied to this, switching which menu is shown after selecting one also felt tricky, likely because there were a number of empty menus. Thankfully, this is a likely rare occurrence with a limited number of likely switches. Regardless of the rarity, an issue was opened to refine the language from “Select Menu” to “Switch Menu” or “Replace”.

In @paaljoachim’s video, he touched on confusion around Styles and how best to both communicate global changes as you’re editing and when you’re saving with multi-entity saving lacking granular options. While there is a welcome guide to help with explaining Styles customization, it very much brings to the forefront how these new concepts will take some getting used to for WordPress users and how much needs to be done in the UIUI UI is an acronym for User Interface - the layout of the page the user interacts with. Think ‘how are they doing that’ and less about what they are doing. to clearly communicate what is happening.

Beyond these high level themes, there were some specific issues raised:

I actually missed that I needed to add a name to the color at all. Since there’s no placeholder text in the area where the color name should be added, I completely overlooked it and assumed I would just add the color, click Done, and voilà! However, it looks like not adding a color name at all means the colors won’t get saved. Adding some directive placeholder text next to the colors – or even an error message after clicking Done – might have helped me move past that. 

@evarlese in this comment.

After applying the template to my post, it didn’t look like those changes or settings were applied, since everything appeared at max width, and I wasn’t really sure of how or where to fix that.

@evarlese in this comment.

I found it a bit strange adding a featured image block and a duotone filterFilter Filters are one of the two types of Hooks https://codex.wordpress.org/Plugin_API/Hooks. They provide a way for functions to modify data of other functions. They are the counterpart to Actions. Unlike Actions, filters are meant to work in an isolated manner, and should never have side effects such as affecting global variables and output. without seeing what the result would look like.  

@paaljoachim in this comment. 

Adding a suggest a second button, is showing it is not using the format of the already present one, which should be more logical. The differences are in the “Border Radius: 50%”” and “Width settings: 50%”” not applied on the new one. Of course this is not an issue, and if you need the same button its easy to achieve this duplicating the existing one.

@paulbigai in this comment

The biggest issue I hit was with the Group block. By default, the Twenty Twenty-Two theme adds an 8rem (that’s pretty big) bottom margin to one of the Groups within the header area.

@greenshady in this WP Tavern post.

#fse-outreach-program, #fse-testing-summary