Introducing Gridable — The Missing Grid Content Editor

This article is all about Gridable — the missing grid content editor which we hope that will stand as the next WordPress inline grid editor.

In the last couple of months we (Pixelgrade crew and I) invested a lot of time and energy to make it happen, so hopefully, you will give it a try and share your thoughts on this one.

Current status

The WordPress editor topic is quite debatable these days. People are strongly discussing on make.wordpress.org about the future of the Editor. Much more to come, I bet.

The WordPress editor is still an article writer, a TinyMCE that was never planned to do more than facilitating writing articles.

Here is a sneak peek regarding the potential of Gridable:

Yet another grid plugin, right?

Well, not really. In the WordPress community, nothing goes exactly as planned since developers take their time to create and extend functionalities as far as they want to.

The editor makes no exception, and inside the Post edit page tons of visual builder plugins have already started to take the place of the classic WordPress editor.

I don’t want to assume that Visual Builders are wrong. No. They always aimed to improve the user experience regarding editing content. In the end, they are meant to allow adding custom layouts to create unique designs.

However, Visual Builders developers began to have a wrong approach when they included every possible feature on this planet, every type of layout, and also a wider range of elements such as grids, galleries, sliders, tabs, videos, maps, etc. The list is way longer, believe me.

It’s not about the building

But let’s face it. All these elements can’t create a reliable environment, especially when these plugins need to interact with a dozen of WordPress themes (which are different in so many regards).

Sometimes, they even overwrite theme features or force their way in (this can also be stated about the WordPress themes overpassing plugins features, but this is another discussion that we’ll delve into another time).

On top of that, I firmly believe that a WordPress website should avoid adding a plugin with endless features and layouts possibilities. In the end, one size doesn’t fit it all, and we, as WordPress authors need to assume certain decisions and let users focus on what they know best.

I know for a fact that the majority of authors are huge fans of offering a lot of options because they think this is the way to make their customers happy. The freedom of choice, right? In reality, this attitude only brings frustrations because things tend to go wrong and the number of tickets increases dramatically.

So, wouldn’t be better to let the theme designers decide which layouts work best and which not? They’re the ones who can deliver the best possible solution.

If you have some spare time: Kendra Kirk from codable.io wrote a pretty good article on the subject, and she states both the pro and cons of Visual Builders.

Gridable does one thing in an elegant way

Gridable is not a saviour that will help you avoid all kind of struggles. No.

Gridable is a witty solution for WordPress lovers who want to create flexible and reliable grids. Being smoothly integrated into the WordPress’s Editor interface, our plugin becomes a suitable choice for everyone: from people with a technical background to those who are non-techy. It simplifies the entire process of building an extensive range of grids that fit perfectly into various environments.

We took one step back from this visual building disruption, and we focused on the WordPress editor and its characteristics.

With Gridable, WordPress authors can keep an eye on the bigger picture while editing a post. Our plugin offers a grid system that adjusts accordingly and makes the entire experience pleasant.

Did you know? The above sentences are aligned with Gridable in a 5 / 7 columns grid? This is how simple it was to set them up in the WordPress editor:

Keeping the high standards

As development and code standards, Gridable is inspired from Shortcake. This is not a coincidence since Shortcake is proposed to be included into WordPress core. So yes, it was a strategic move to facilitate Gridable to take a seat at this table as well.

This also means that it is a plugin based on filters and templates, and it is very easy for a theme developer to extend functionality and make it “Gridable compatible” by the blink of an eye.

Gridable also has a grid attributes system, which allows WordPress themes or plugins to add or remove row attributes such as text input, a color picker or a simple option select.

Based on this gist, you can set up a row background color or some spacing options which will integrate perfectly with your theme’s row system.

To be continued

After Customify, this plugin makes me very proud. I spent tons of hours of work, and I’m very excited about what’s the next adventure regarding how we ca make it even better.

To improve it in a wise and useful way, we sincerely need your feedback and thoughts. So feel free to share this article with your network, and write down your comments about your experience with Gridable.