Blockheads and Daffodils

Which is more depressing, forty days of rain or using the new WordPress Block/Gutenberg editor?

Even the daffodils are depressed

Unlike Enchanted April (link to last blog), this past April has been anything but enchanting.   Day after day of rain and gloomy skies – on Tuesday we even had a bit of sleet, and some places received several inches of snow.   These cold wet late springs are beginning to be the norm here, and it seems you need to book a vacation to an Italian castle if you want to enjoy nice weather and blooming flowers in April anymore.    Despite the debate over climate change, it does make you stop and think – are we ruining the earth?    It’s enough to make you depressed, like poor old Charlie Brown of the Peanuts cartoon fame – remember how Lucy was always calling him a blockhead.

Which brinks me to my second topic, the new WordPress block editor or Gutenberg Editor, as it is named after Johannes Gutenberg, who invented a printing press with movable type more than 500 years ago.    If you are not familiar with it yet, each paragraph, photo, video etc, is contained in it’s own separate block, and there is an option to try out this new Editor on the right hand menu in Draft. Since we are all (sooner or later), to be made mandatory Blockheads by WordPress, you may now have another reason to be depressed other than the weather, unless of course you’re the kind of person who enjoys coding and fiddling with layouts.   If you’re just here for the joy of blogging, then it seems like the new editor has taken all the fun out of it.    I’m not sure how they managed to take something so simple (writing and inserting pretty pictures) and make it so complicated.    Of course, I may change my mind once I get used to it, but it seems to be taking twice as long to do anything, if you can even figure it out in the first place.    On my first try I could not even paste in the draft I had written in Office Word.   I had heard that it would automatically convert it to blocks so I wouldn’t have to copy and paste each paragraph individually.   Was I not in the right block? I finally gave up and tried to exit back to the Classic Editor but could not find the button.    I googled and read the tutorial and tried to contact a Happiness Engineer to no avail, and after wasting an hour finally located it at the bottom of some sub-menu.   Intuitive it is not.   Perhaps hiding the button was deliberate, thereby forcing me to stay here until I figured it out, but the hour grew late and I was starting to panic. It was like being in one of those reality “escape room” games where you have to figure out the clues or you’d be stuck there forever.     

When I first joined WordPress almost two years ago, there were 32 million followers on here, now there are 52 million.     I’m not sure what is behind their reason for the change to the block format (could it be the new European copyright laws coming?), but I would bet the majority of those on here are either amateur bloggers or smaller business sites, who don’t want, have the time or even care about how they can endlessly change and create new layouts by moving blocks around.    It’s a puzzle to me, but then I am only a very small tadpole in a great big pond.    I checked a recent survey though, 1800 of 2700 users who had tried it were not happy, so I don’t think I’m alone.    It would be nice if WordPress would leave us the option to continue with the current Classic editor, if that is a possibility?  (Asking nicely here, but not really expecting a positive response, as they didn’t listen about the dark blue likes and links which don’t contrast well to black ink.)     

Ah well, the second attempt was better, but I watched a youtube tutorial first to get the basics. I’m sure there are many more icons and features I will need to know at some point, like just exactly how did I do the links? The captions were fun though. I’ll try it out to see if it will solve the problem of my very thin font with the Sela theme…(it did not, although I was allowed to make it larger). I’ll even try a background color, maybe yellow….pretty fancy eh? (Except it’s not really yellow, it’s called luminous vivid amber.) But good grief Charlie Brown, it’s just not worth all the grief. I think I would prefer to remain Glutenberg-free! Now where is that exit button again?

To cheer up I went for a walk in the woods.   Here’s a link to last years blog, Among the Daffodils, because daffodils always remind me of sunshine, and we need some right now.  

see how late the spring is, not a bud on the trees.
now this is yellow!
woodland fairyland

PS.  Have you tried the new Gutenberg/Block Editor yet? 

59 thoughts on “Blockheads and Daffodils

  1. Jo Shafer says:

    I never heard tell of a Gutenberg block editor before you wrote about it. Good grief. What in the world is Word Press up to now? So far, I’ve been happily working away with both “My Sites” and “Reader” and have been able to compose in Word Document, then copy and paste into the Word Press window. Lately, I’ve been practicing writing directly into the Word Press and pasting photographs from Google sites. I do have a copy of “Word Press for Dummies,” but I guess I’m too dumb to understand it! I learn techie stuff best by doing it. Oh well, we shall see what we shall see, shan’t we?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Joni says:

      Jo, I just edited my post to add a sentence about it – there is a link to try out the new block editor when you are in Draft, it’s on the right hand side below settings. I had read other people’s blogs and people were trying it out, as the rumor was WP is forcing the change come Jan 2020, although one of the tech people said there was no firm date, he suggested I try it sooner rather than later. There have been many many complaints, as I believe it is still in testing stage. Lately I have heard that the Classic Editor we now use, may be available as a plug-in until 2022, which is reassuring. I found it easier on my second attempt, but it does seem more time-consuming. I sometimes draft in Office Word and sometimes directly on WordPress, but if I have to build each and every block, then will probably draft in Office more. So, no need to panic yet, but I thought I’d try it out. I’m not the most computer literate person, and of course the tutorials don’t address some of the basic stuff, like how to switch back to the Classic Editor! We are supposed to have a sunny weekend, and then a whole week of rain again next week. I did manage to get my grass cut and my patio furniture out however. Good Night!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Joni says:

      PS. I never even saw a way to post from google sites or other media….one of many things to learn. When I mentioned the copyright Europe thing, it may force sites like WP to put filters on to prevent copywright infringement, like youtube currently does, or attempts to, so maybe this is one of their reasonings? Just guessing at that though. Maybe they are just computer geeks who like to play around with coding and layouts?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jo Shafer says:

        Hmm….maybe so. My son is a “computer geek” ~ that’s his business as a web designer and developer. I think I run this data by him and see what he advises since this stuff is over my head.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        You are lucky! Does your son live near you so he can show you how to do stuff? What I meant by computer geeks is if you watch some of the tutorials they are all excited about the new Block editor because it allows you to do so much more with a website. But it’s the rest of us who don’t really care – we just want to do the same thing. I would be curious if he is heart why WPress is changing this, it is supposed to be part of their 5.2 upgrade next year. Before I started blogging I had narrowed by choice to WP or Blogger as my host site. Someone told me WP was better, but be prepared for updates and problems with updates, so I guess that is what we are experiencing. I’ve been on here 1 1/2 years and this is the first change I have seen.

        Like

      • Jo Shafer says:

        No, unfortunately my son lives on the Washington state peninsula and rarely communicates, so I just hope he’ll respond to my email this morning. His wife is far more helpful.

        I think I’m just confused with all these terms, such as “blockhead” (now, see what you started?) and class editor. But I am open to learning. We’ll see.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        Should I have defined blockhead? The younger generation might not get the term, not having grown up reading Snoopy and the gang? But I guess we all feel somewhat stupid, when we have to learn something new!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        PS. To further complicate things, one of my regular followers tonight told me she had to refollow me when she clicked on my site. So now I’m wondering if switching back and forth between editors is causing problems with followers, both mine and those I follow, as this happened too with someone I follow??? I had to refollow them. Maybe good reasons to wait…..I will ask a Happiness Engineer next time I talk to one.

        Like

      • Claudette says:

        I’m almost always willing to try new things, for a while, to give myself a chance to get used to something, but I really truly dislike the blocks so I hope they don’t force anything on us…

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Eilene Lyon says:

    One day I found my blog had defaulted to the block editor and I had no idea what was going on. What happened to all my text options??!! I had read earlier a blog post about how to switch back. Whew! I will not be happy if forced to change, but I usually end up figuring things out. Change is painful and not always necessary.

    I, too, draft in Word and then copy and paste in its entirety. I find I can include a few other formatting options that WP doesn’t seem to offer. Occasionally I draft in WP, but only for short pieces.

    Hope you get lots of May flowers!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Joni says:

      I wanted to try it to see if I could do it, if forced to change, and I can, the second attempt was easier, but time consuming, and fun. I may do a few more in Block and then decide which is better in terms of Font, as with the Classic Editor my font is so thin I have to bold everything, and if I change the font there, (and I’ve tried), it changes all the previous posts too, which is a problem, as then it’s large and bold. We are to have a sunny weekend (yea!) and then rain all next week…..sigh.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Joni says:

      It was the Classic Editor which reformatted all my previous posts when I tried a different font. But the Happiness Engineer told me that trying or using the new Block Editor will NOT change any of my previous posts and so far it has not.

      Like

  3. lindasschaub says:

    You did great Joni and I like that you used the word “block” and “Blockhead’ as in Charlie Brown – very cute and clever. I like the orange background that you used to set off that block – I never tried that until the second or third time. And it worked fine for you with the “click here” for the link. I don’t know what my problem was with it. Don’t you feel better having one under your belt now? When you go back to draft the next post, it will probably still be in block editor – that is how it is for me now.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Joni says:

      I feel better for having done one, and knowing I can do it if I need to. But I’m just going to stick with the classic for longer posts, and try the block one for shorter ones….at least that’s my plan.

      Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        That’s a good plan – I’d go with that. I’m going to stick with the block editor for now, unless I get really jammed up at work – whenever our new computer equipment comes in and I’m not asking when that is. If I spend some hours there – hopefully not – and all is done in the course of the workday. I was just looking for something and this is strange. This morning I looked back to see when the goslings would be here – any day now, as I saw sightings of them as little fluff balls last year the first week in May. In looking back I saw I did a post on “World Walking Day” – it was May 8th. So I thought I’d get together my pictures … last year I did my last trip I took and did highlights. So, I Googled to ensure it was still on May 8th and there is no record of it. I use Twitter to follow trending stories since I don’t have TV – searched Twitter and nothing. Well that’s too bad as I was going to do my first trip (international) and I guess I won’t do that now.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        In fact it says it is on October 5th – even stranger. I think I will go to bed earlier too. I did six miles this morning – forgot to mention it in the post. I am caught up in Reader, though not with e-mail. Tomorrow no post (unless something stupendous happens) – will get some things done in the house instead. Have a good night Joni.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Ha ha – well I should have known with all the rain we have had. I looked at my rosebushes today before the next five days make it muddy and soggy out there again – not a sign of life on them. I was hopeful and it was a long winding skinny branch that was beginning to leaf out. They should have sprouted something by now.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Thanks – I will save this link too Joni. I had trouble again embedding a link to a site in today’s post. I tried two ways – got it in there, but not to a point when you can say “click here” like before. You figured it out, so before I do that again, I will have to figure it out. I want next time to do the side-by-side images. I took a lot of pictures today and good for two more posts so I will practice on it and see if I can figure it out. I did better tonight … 35 minutes for today’s post and it had a lot of paragraphs, subheadings and pictures, but I need to try some new things. Thank you again for sending this to me.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        I highlighted the phrase I wanted to be underlined as the link, then used the paperclip icon to paste the url in, the way I usually do. Then something came up and I clicked on apply, and a button came up below that, which I slid over, and then hit apply again. But I’m not really sure, mostly it was trial and error. Maybe it will be in Jo’s tutorial link? I’m drafting tonight, drafted Lilacs, trying to keep them under 1000 words, and now since I’m on a roll will attempt a short draft on Rhubarb, as I have a delicious recipe for later in the month, have not seen any rhubarb out at all.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Well this worked perfectly Joni. Like you with the tags last week, I must have had a senior moment. I always worked fine with Classic Editor but when I tried to do that link a few weeks ago, it was abysmal. I just fixed it and it looks better. I never knew about the worms listening to the ground for movement of worms and nearby grubs – that is why you see them tilt their head etc. I did a quick post tonight – I was waiting on the Royal baby to be born and had the idea for the post after seeing this duck on a nest – when the newest Royal was born this morning, I figured I would go ahead and do it today. We are expecting storms this evening – hoping I can get through Comments and part of Reader before that happens. My mom used to make rhubarb and strawberries and would stew them together and make a pot of it which we’d have on ice cream/yogurt or on toast as well. It was not as thick as jam, but sure was good. I mentioned it to Diane and she has rhubarb as well and said she never has mixed strawberries and rhubarb – I said she had to try it “sweet and tart”. My grandmother used to have a patch in her backyard. She’d go in the backyard with me with a paring knife and cut a few rhubarb stalks and we’d come in the house, wash them off and dip them in sugar. Nice memories.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        I didn’t know worms made a sound? Those Robins must have excellent hearing. I made a rhubarb/strawberry compote for the first time last year and had it mixed with vanilla yogurt, and it was excellent. Three hours of garage cleaning out has me beat – plenty of spiders Linda! I swept all the dead leaves and webs out and sprayed it all down with peppermint spray, but I don’t know if that works. Also cleaned up some pots, and planted some lettuce, which is way to early, but I figured they may as well be in the dirt as in my cold garage. It was a nice day for working, 70, just right, but then late pm the wind swung round and a cold front blew in, so I guess that’s it for spring this week!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Yes, I miss that strawberry and rhubarb and it would simmer all day and smelled so good when I came home from work. We have ugly weather out there now and for the rest of the week – maybe some hope for Friday. You did good and I am terrified of creepy crawlies even in the garage.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        I’m going to buy a rhubarb plant this year, as I always seem to wait until they are all sold out. My poor lettuce must be shivering out there this morning.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        It will be iceberg lettuce truly if it gets much colder! I think the rhubarb comes back every year doesn’t it? I know my grandmother would not have been going to any nurseries unless she brought it into the house and “overwintered” it. I used to take the bus with a woman and her husband did not like spending money on flowers – said they were a waste of money. So, every year, she’d bring all her geranium plants in and overwinter them. I said “okay, you have to water them and re-pot them so there is money involved with those two tasks.” They were not potted flowers – they were in the ground. She kept them in a dark closet. I thought it was odd, but I do know geraniums, especially the larger ones, are expensive. I did used to treat myself to the zonal geraniums so they were already a good size (that was when I did my own planters). I used to get “Strawberry Sizzle” – a dark and light pink mix. I know people do that for their poinsettias too.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        HA to the iceberg lettuce! We may get a frost tonight or close, so it will have to fend for itself. Yes rhubarb comes up every year, once you get a patch established, it’s good forever, at least ours was on the farm. Although I was reading tonight and it said it’s only good for 10-15 years, but that is not the heirloom variety like we had on the farm. All those older seeds were hardy, that’s why people want them now. I did buy a rhubarb plant today at Walmart, $9, so I’ll give it a try, but may ask my neighbour’s son if I can transplant a few from his patch too. It was so cold in the nursery, that I had to leave, felt sorry for the people working there, a cold north wind, 4 C….crazy. I tried to overwinter two geranium plants once, brought them in, put one on either side of the kitchen window, where they grew towards the light, very ugly and spindly. I know people stick them in the basement in a dark corner, but I’ve never tried that. A large pot of geraniums in a pretty blue pot you could reuse was $20, but I didn’t buy any because it was just too cold….although I was tempted….I may go back when it is warmer. Strawberry Sizzle sounds nice – I like a mixture of pinks.
        All those flowers in the nurseries today looked so cold and forlorn. I went to three searching for the rose dormant oil, with no luck, maybe it is d/C. I know they like to have the stock for mother’s day but maybe they need to reassess that!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        That poor iceberg lettuce needed a jacket overnight! I converted your C to Fahrenheit and wow – 39 degrees! We had 41 degrees with a 37 wind chill when I went out this morning. Winter coat, hat and gloves. We actually had sun – it was supposed to be raining, but it held off. Tonight a storm and flood watch for tomorrow. Hope your lettuce does not get flooded out if you have heavy rain. This woman on the bus did that every year – I was amazed. The Strawberry Sizzle zonal geraniums were beautiful. I paid the extra amount for their size and they bloomed til October (in those days, we didn’t get a hard freeze the end of September). But they were also $1.00 more as they were one of the plants where $1.00 of proceeds go to Susan Komen Foundation for breast cancer research. This is a picture of Strawberry Sizzle: https://www.burpeehomegardens.com/Flowers/PlantDetails.aspx?plantid=5263

        I used to have hibiscus in the garden – had three of them, two small and a big one, and they were beautiful, plus a miniaturel flowering tree in a pot. I can’t remember the name of it, but it was very pretty – all pink blossoms. My next-door neighbor overwintered them in her kitchen. She loved flowers and had a doorwall and that spot got a lot of sun. She had a lot of houseplants in that corner, so didn’t mind them there. But then she got a dog and said she had to let the dog out on the deck so my stuff was in the way getting to the doorwall so had to take them in myself. Like yours, it was a disaster. All three of them lost leaves and died within a few weeks. Every time I watered them, water went everywhere – guess the soil was too sandy. Leaves everywhere – just a big mess. And they took up a lot of room in the already cluttered basement. So one day, got fed up and that was that. I bet they put all the plant doctoring needs out after Mother’s Day … they want the hanging baskets, bouquets and little gift-type things out front now.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        That strawberry sizzle is very pretty! I should look for it here, but don’t recognize the name. By the time I got outside to do yardwork today at 1:30, it had warmed up, 11 C (don’t ask me what that is – sometimes I have my weathernetwork website set to F, as that is what we learned in grade school! It was a good day for working outside with a sweater on, not too hot or cold. Washed all the picket fences, arbors, doors, and attempted to clean the spiderwebs off the siding with some success. Three hours is about my maximum for outside work, I will be stiff tomorrow. At least we had some sun today.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Yes, those first few times outside are a killer for neck and shoulders and back. I grew up with Fahrenheit too and I convert temps to C in parentheses or miles to kilometers as I have several followers who use that system. You were productive. Yes, the strawberry sizzle is pretty – I hope you can find it there. So I Googled to see if they carried them in Canada (in general) and got this site. Not around you, but look at the beautiful pinks that geraniums come in. I never knew that. I have had a dark pink and the Strawberry Sizzle only.
        https://www.thegreenery.ca/gardening-tips/geraniums,-shrubs-and-more!.html

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        Any pink is good…..except fuchsia, which is too purpley for me. I planted a clematis last year and it bloomed fuchsia, even though the tag looked pink. Now I hesitate to buy anything unless it is in bloom. I bought a yellow and pink striped dahlia yesterday, just because I liked the colour, (so tropical looking) and now I don’t know what to do with it. When I googled dahlia’s it said they don’t grow well in a northern zone, and have to be dug up in the fall. Undecided whether to put it in the ground or a larger container.

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I didn’t know that – I’ve never had a dahlia and would have thought they were hardier than that – I am surprised. I lost my clematis in the Polar Vortex a few years ago – one tiny one is still going strong, but the Nelly Moser is gone. I am sure I had a picture of it on the pole winding around the log house birdfeeder but it was beautiful. Planted it for my mom so she could see it from her bedroom window.
        https://lindaschaubblog.net/2014/06/02/mauve-twinkles-shone-through-the-sprinkles/

        Like

  4. Shelley says:

    Way to keep trying with Gutenberg. I haven’t clicked the ‘try it button’ yet, so I’m still using the classic editor. I can do either one, just haven’t enjoyed the struggles with G enough to wanna stick it out. I love the photos of the flowers! Spring has sprung. Hang in there, hope posting in G gets easier for you the more you practice.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Joni says:

      Actually Shelley I switched back to the Classic. My posts tend to be long, and I’m behind with my weekly posts, and it just takes too long to do them in the block one, so I’m going to save the new one for shorter posts. But now I’m wondering if I am losing followers by switching back and forth between them, as Linda one of my regular followers, told me she had to re-follow me? I’ve contacted a Happiness Engineer about this possibility, but have not heard back yet. I guess I feel better knowing I could do it if they make us.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Shelley says:

        I do think they should just let it be an option to choose from. That’s weird that followers would be lost?! WOW – I hope you hear back from the HE. You’re right, at least you know you could do it if you’re forced to! Hang in there! Keep writing for the joy of it.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        The HE is puzzled, and wants to investigate further. It was only one follower, and her comments sometimes go to spam, so maybe it’s just a glitch for that one person? I suspect they may allow us to opt out, with a plug-in if it means losing customers!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Shelley says:

        Way to stump the HE’s! They have plenty of work to do to figuring each bug out. I can imagine it isn’t an easy task, especially with such a wide variety of folks using the platform. I sure wouldn’t want the job!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        I always find them helpful, and if you are on late at night, as I often am around 11pm they are always available for chat, but if not then I usually get an answer the next morning. Although sometimes you don’t really get a definite answer, like why one of my follower’s comments occasionally go to spam? I suppose there are even things they don’t know in the quirky world of computers.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Ally Bean says:

    It’s my understanding that even after the *mandatory* switch to block editor we’ll be able to use a plug-in that keeps classic editor going. This will be supported until 2022 [i think]. Check your plug-ins page to see if you have that option.

    As for why WP is ignoring the demands of its customers, that is you and me… my guess is that like many social media companies they don’t care about their customers. They care about making work for their employees so creating a new system keeps the employees employed, and we the customers have to deal with it or leave. 😑

    Liked by 1 person

    • Joni says:

      I will…once I find where the plug-in’s page is! Yes in some of the tutorials I watched on youtube they seem very excited about the new capabilities of layout, whereas the rest of us don’t care – if it’s not broke, don’t fix it. I am going to stay with the classic editor for now, as Linda told me she had to refollow me after I switched to block, so now I’m wondering if that may cause one to lose followers. I contacted a Happiness Engineer to find out, but I think they will deny it as usual. Another reason to wait until the bugs are ironed out.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Ally Bean says:

        On my WP account main page there’s a lefthand column of words that link to various functions. Below Appearance and above Users is the word, Plugins. That’s where I saw it.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Joni says:

        Yes I see it! Thanks Ally. I also see upgrade to the business plan to install plug-ins? So I guess I’ll worry about it later, but hopefully they will make it free!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. J P says:

    Oh boy, this is the second blog post I have read where someone struggles mightily with the change to the block editor. And the other guy is a software engineer by training.

    When I write I want to write. I don’t want to spend all of my time and creative energy fiddlefritzing with WordPress layouts. This is why I have been putting off giving the new way a try. I will make the change if I am forced, but for what I do (and how I do it) there is no reason I need to make a change.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Joni says:

      I gave up on it for now, as I’m short for time (the weather is finally nice here and I’m in the middle of a kitchen re-design), but my impression from reading other bloggers is there are still lots of bugs in it, so I think I’ll wait until they fix them.
      I have heard that they may still offer the existing program until 2022, so no need to worry. They’ve heard lots of grumbling about the new one!

      Liked by 1 person

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