WordPress 6.2 – comes with improvements to both the content and design editors

  • Ivan Timov,
  • April 1, 2023
WordPress 6.2 – comes with improvements to both the content and design editors

WordPress 6.2 “Dolphin” is here. With this version, phase 2 of the integration of the block editor into the website design and development process is completed.

This version includes final improvements to the interface and tools in both the content block editor and the site design editor, making it even more convenient to work with them.

Block Editor

The block editor in WordPress is the content editor used to create and edit pages and posts on a website.

In WordPress 6.2, improvements to the block editor are focused on the interface and the panels for managing blocks and their content.

Improvements to the Editor Interface

Here are some of the improvements to the editor interface in WordPress 6.2:

The icon for the document/block tools panel has been changed from a gear to a page with a sidebar.

Here is how the icon looked before and how it looks now.

This change brings clarity to the meaning and action of this button, as both buttons (this one and the one on the right with three vertical dots) indicate Settings. The former is for document/block settings and opens the right panel, while the latter is for editor settings and opens a menu of options.

The document/block tools panel has options divided into tabs for Settings and Styles. Settings in the two tabs: Settings and Styles

These tabs appear for blocks that have options for settings, such as Group and Columns.

The Outline panel for the document has been added as an additional tab in the List View. View of the two tabs: List View and Outline

A new simplified writing mode has been added to the editor, where all panels are hidden.

It can be activated through the editor options – Distraction free, or with a keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Shift+.

Improvements in the Block Library Panel

There is a new tab for Files (Media) – it displays the images, videos, and audios uploaded to the website.

The panel on the left of the editor displays the Media tab.

There is a new additional category for Openverse files – freely accessible images. The images are automatically downloaded from the Openverse server and saved to the website’s library.

Gallery of images from Openverse.

Openverse is part of the WordPress project (wordpress.org). It is a directory of freely accessible (free) images and audio files.

There are improvements in the arrangement of templates in the Templates tab, showing them in a list by category.

List of categories for templates in the Templates tab Site editor

Site editor

This is the editor that allows you to design the layout and personalize the style of the entire website.

It is accessible through Appearance » Editor (only if a block theme is used).

Note: Block themes are different from classic themes and are available in WordPress from version 5.9.

The design editor is based on the block editor, with additional functionalities and specific blocks, templates, and page templates.

In WordPress 6.2, the site editor is now a stable version, and the Beta label has been removed from its button in the menu.

Version 6.2 of WordPress is the version that completes Phase 2 of the Gutenberg project’s development plan. With this, the site editor is finished and exits Beta status. The next stage will focus on collaboration in content creation.

Here are the stages of the Gutenberg project’s roadmap in summary:

  1. Stage 1 was about implementing an easier and more intuitive way of creating content. This is how the development of the new content editor, the block editor (Gutenberg), in WordPress began. It replaced the classic editor that was used until now to edit content on pages/posts. This stage was completed with WordPress version 5.0, which introduced the new block editor.
  2. The now completed stage 2 was about integrating the block editor into the website design process – a holistic website design with blocks, block templates, patterns, and block themes. As editing the design, layout, and styles of the website requires specific functionalities, the block editor has been enhanced with design blocks, settings, and renamed the site editor. This is like a special version of the block editor that is only used for editing the design.
  3. Stage 3 will focus on collaboration in content creation on the site. Work will be done to implement the necessary functionalities for the workflow and real-time collaboration in content creation.
  4. And in stage 4, multilingualism is planned to be integrated into the core of the system.

Improved navigation in the menu

The main menu in the editor has improved navigation.

The template menu and the template parts menu now display categories of templates in a tree structure, making it much easier to reach a specific template and select it for editing.

Easier navigation of the Navigation block

The design tools panel for the Navigation block now allows for easier management. Elements in the menu are displayed in a list in a separate List View tab in the side panel. From this tab, it is convenient to add new elements to the menu and create new menus.

Style Book (global overview and editing of styles)

The Style Book contains an overview of the global style of all blocks on the site. The button to open the book displays all blocks on the site on a single page, and their styles can be viewed and edited from there. Any changes made are global, and during editing, changes are visible in real-time.

Sticky block at the top of the screen

In the design settings for the Group block, there is a new option for positioning it – Sticky. When activated, the block sticks to the top of the screen when scrolling through the page. The block should be at the highest level (i.e., not nested in another block).

Color differentiation of different block types

WordPress 6.2

The View panel displays template and reusable blocks in purple, while standard blocks are displayed in blue.

WordPress 6.2 comes with many improvements for both the content and design editors:

  • The design tools for the block are divided into two tabs – Settings and Styles;
  • In the block library, there is a new Files tab that includes the Openverse category (with over 700 million freely available images and audio);
  • There is a new writing mode where all panels in the editor are hidden;
  • Block styles can be copied and pasted onto other blocks;
  • The website editor is in a stable state, and navigation between templates has been improved;
  • The Navigation block can be managed from the design tool panel;
  • There is a Style Book that allows for global editing of the style for each block on the website.
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Ivan Timov January 10, 2023

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