Along with WordPress 5.0, came the Twenty Nineteen theme, and it seemed like something I should grab with both hands too, so, if you’re wondering what the Twenty Nineteen theme looks like… then wonder no more, you’re looking at it! 

Pretty cool.

The Sidebar is Dead!?

You’ll see, in line with more modern thinking, as well as replacing the editor on the backend, with Gutenberg, in the Twenty Nineteen theme, the sidebar is gone. Pfft. Nowhere to be seen.

That means the mobile and the desktop flavours are more similar. Your site can keep a similar flow on multiple devices.

Is the sidebar dead? Maybe not… it’s certainly very useful, for example, to my eCommerce clients’ customers, when it comes to things like filtering large product ranges, but for the purposes of straight content, the distraction free reading experience is probably an improvement.

Featured Images look Awesome!

Cast your eyes to the top of this page, and you’ll see that I have unimaginatively given this post the same featured image as the homepage of this site. But, you will be looking at the new featured image style, with the image behind, a colour overlay, and a full dollop of awesome-sauce all over the whole thing. 

That featured image style looks darned gorgeous, and you know it.

This site is FAF (Fast as Flip)

Since you’re here, reading this, notice how fast this site is. It’s really, really fast. This was no accident. I made it so deliberately.

I call this Fast as Flip (or FAF). This page loads completely in 0.2 seconds if you load it from London, UK, see below:

In addition, via AMP (Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages project, which by the way, is a shining beacon in Open Source Governance, too), you’ll be able to load this page blazing speed on your handheld devices too, even over the most watery 3G connection.

If you want optimized WordPress like this for your website, click here.

Change is Good (sometimes)

There has been a lot of negative energy expelled about WordPress 5.0, particularly Gutenberg, and certainly it has cast light on areas where WordPress (the Open Source project) could use some improvements. The release schedule has frankly been a roller-coaster – one which made maintaining WordPress websites extremely difficult over the past month.

But you can see, with WordPress 5.0, the changes which have happened have been very much to the “modernising” end. We’ve now got a truly modern theme – Twenty Seventeen wasn’t so great without a child theme – and WordPress is once again feeling fresh and bleeding edge.

Do we have a Child Theme?

Ah, child themes, eh? So, we don’t need one huh? Of course you need one! Then you’ll be able to tinker with the font (like we have) and other elements without losing all that on update.

I’m running a very simple child theme here. If you’d like me to release a downloadable version, please leave a comment below, otherwise, I do recommend following the tutorial in the WordPress.org codex to learn how to do this your side – it’s maybe 30 minutes to do, and you’ll learn something along the way. See “How to Create a Child Theme” in WordPress.org.

Gutenberg Key Feature – Paste from MS Word or Google Doc

One thing that was said around release was this – and it is true – before you criticise it too much, try copy pasting a full Microsoft Word or Google Doc into WordPress without doing anything, and see how it is styled… hmm, nice 🙂

Easy once you know how

Like with making a child theme, the new Gutenberg editor will become second nature to you soon, and is easy once you know how. It aims to be a better writing and editing experience.

As soon as you get used to the new editor, and you’ve got your plugins and code all sitting together nicely, with WordPress 5.0, you’ll be in a great position to take your website forward into the mobile web of the future – particularly so if you use Twenty Nineteen as your base theme.

Change can be good. Embrace the change 🙂

Hate it or love it?

Hate the Twenty Nineteen theme? Love it to bits already? Leave a comment below.

Published by Robin Scott

I'm Robin Scott, a WordPress and WooCommerce expert who, along with three other people, runs a business called Silicon Dales Ltd remotely, from a base in the North West of the UK (kind of near Manchester!).

Join the conversation

2 Comments

    1. Hi – okay since I added this last night, and you commented today, I will try to get this online in the next day or so 🙂 WordPress 5.0.2 has caused a little WooCommerce hiccup today though, so it may be a little while – the Woo core team did an excellent job and got a fix out the door fast.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.