The Month in WordPress: November 2020
November 2020 saw several updates to the WordPress 5.6 release. Read on to follow all the latest news from the WordPress world!
WordPress 5.6 updates
The Core team released WordPress 5.6 Beta 3 on Nov. 2, Beta 4 on Nov. 12, release candidate 1 on Nov. 17, and release candidate 2 on Dec. 1. You can test the Beta versions and the release candidates by downloading them from WordPress.org or by using the WordPress Beta Tester plugin. Check out the WordPress 5.6 field guide to understand the features of WordPress 5.6 and learn how you can incorporate them into your websites. WordPress 5.6 will be out by Dec. 9, 2020.
But our work is never done: You can submit feature suggestions for WordPress 5.7 by Dec. 15.
Want to contribute to upcoming WordPress releases? Join the WordPress Core dev chats on Wednesdays at 5 a.m. and 8 p.m. UTC in the #core channel on the Make WordPress Slack, and catch up with recaps on the Core team blog. If you would like to help with WordPress 5.6 outreach, contact the WordPress Marketing team on the #marketing channel.
Gutenberg 9.3 and 9.4 are out
Contributor teams released Gutenberg Version 9.3 on Nov. 4 and Version 9.4 on Nov. 18. Both versions include several improvements to Full Site Editing (FSE) flows, in addition to bug fixes and feature upgrades. Version 9.3 is the first release that isn’t included entirely in WordPress 5.6; the version automatically enables FSE experiments when a block-based theme is active. Version 9.4 introduces some new features like percentage width for button blocks, block variation transformations, social icon support, and font size support for the list block. You can find out more about the Gutenberg roadmap in the What’s next in Gutenberg blog post.
Learn WordPress updates
WordPress contributor teams are all set to launch Learn WordPress in December. Community members can now watch video workshops to learn about various WordPress topics, participate in discussion groups, and use lesson plans for organizing their own workshops. Contributor teams have launched quizzes and are also working on setting standards for workshops.
Want to contribute to Learn WordPress? You can now submit a workshop application (submissions in languages other than English are welcome!), apply to become a discussion group leader, organize discussions for your local WordPress meetup group, or help fix issues with existing lesson plans.
WordPress 5.6 Translations and Polyglots survey
WordPress 5.6 is ready to be translated and is now at hard string freeze. If you would like to contribute, check out these instructions and ensure that your locale is ready for an automated release. The Polyglots team has also kicked off its translator research survey. Please participate in the survey, share the survey link with members of your locale, and help amplify the Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn posts about it.
- PHP 8 is out, and WordPress 5.6 aims to be fully compatible with the latest PHP version.
- Contributor teams have kicked off an ongoing discussion on starter content for WordPress themes. Starter content for the Twenty Twenty One, Twenty Twenty, and Twenty Seventeen themes are now available.
- The Accessibility team is testing a tool to generate the structure of an accessibility statement for WordPress websites based on W3C standards, and it is requesting feedback from the community.
- The WordPress Foundation has published a report on Open Source workshops that were held online in 2020, based on the Learn WordPress platform.
- The Docs team is actively following up on a proposal to restructure the Gutenberg developer documentation.
- The Community team is back with Tuesday Trainings. The team is also inviting suggestions on team goals for 2021 with a deadline of Dec. 14.
- The Support team is making changes to the forum page to improve discoverability.
- Two online WordCamps took place in November: WordCamp Finland Online and WordCamp Mexico Online. You can find Livestream recaps of the events on their websites. Videos will soon be available on WordPress.tv as well.
- The Themes team made some changes to WordPress theme requirements. These include removing updated CSS guidelines and a proposed plan to make WordPress themes accessibility-ready. The team is also requesting feedback on the resolution process for issues found in live themes.
- WordPress 5.6 will feature a major jQuery change, with the bundled jQuery version being updated to Version 3.5.1 and jQuery Migrate being updated to Version 3.3.2.
- The Diversity speaker training group of the Community team is requesting feedback on reimagining their work. Please share your feedback as comments on the post by Dec. 18.
Have a story that we should include in the next “Month in WordPress” post? Please submit it here.
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