In this content series, we’ll be talking about WP Engine’s commitment to empowering the open web.
While our portfolio of modern WordPress solutions includes proprietary products and services tailored specifically to our customers and the success of their sites, many of our solutions include extremely powerful and popular open source projects used by millions of builders for sites hosted anywhere.
With WP Engine’s recent acquisition of Delicious Brains WordPress plugins, our commitment and investment in these open source projects are deepening. As we work on each of them, and the new features and functionality they will include, we’re excited for what the open future holds.
To give you a better idea of what that means, this ongoing series will look at our open source projects in greater detail and offer a view into the vision for their roadmaps, the investment we’re making in their success, and how WP Engine intends to leverage those investments in order to support the open web.
In this inaugural installment, we take a closer look at all things Genesis with future installments covering ACF, WP Migrate, Better Search and Replace, and other projects in WP Engine’s open source portfolio.
Navigating the Future of WordPress
The Genesis Framework, its premium child themes, and suite of builder plugins have helped site builders create incredible digital experiences with WordPress for more than a decade.
Acquired by WP Engine in 2018, the Genesis Framework and child themes have been carefully maintained with added improvements that bring compatibility to the modern block editor and regular input from an active community of contributors who play a key role in shaping the future Genesis roadmap.
Genesis has also been intentional about aligning with WordPress core as block-based editing (Gutenberg) has progressed and evolved from the 5.0 release in 2018 to the advent of Full Site Editing in the most current versions (6.0+).
Full Site Editing is still a bit of a mystery for many site builders, and given the leadership the Genesis Framework has provided over the past decade of WordPress theme development, there is a natural role for Genesis-related products to fill in helping builders navigate this future.
To that effect, WP Engine’s current investments in WordPress theme technologies, from the team that brought you the Genesis Framework, include the creation of a new, forward-looking theme-builder designed specifically for Full Site Editing.
At its core, the Genesis Framework eliminated 80% of the “startup” work it took to build a traditional or “classic” WordPress theme, and it did so by way of the parent/child theme relationship. This helped thousands of site builders effectively standardize the majority of decisions about structure and integrations with WordPress features.
The new theme-builder which is being built outside of the Genesis Framework achieves the same outcome for Full Site Editing themes, but instead of inheriting characteristics from a parent theme, themes are generated with those characteristics built in.
Imagine leveraging the technical theming experience of the latest and greatest in Full Site Editing (think theme.json) and surfacing it all in a friendly, easy-to-navigate and guided interface for the creation and management of your own custom block themes.
This will effectively do what the original Genesis Framework did for traditional theme creation but in the context of this next generation of WordPress. Layer this experience on top of our growing investments into Git and CI/CD-powered workflows and the future of custom site creation is quite exciting.
The new project also works seamlessly with Local, where theme files will be automatically generated each time you create a theme. Check out the video below for a closer look at the Alpha:
Developers will save hundreds of hours using this tool, which is only in its first phase. As we continue to work on it, we expect to add features that will go far beyond theme creation, looking at new ways to deploy, manage, and continue building using Full Site Editing functionality.
Stay tuned for a lot of exciting updates in this space. And keep on the lookout for the next installments of our OSS Roadmap series, where we’ll cover Advanced Custom Fields and additional builder plugins from Delicious Brains, WP Engine’s ongoing contributions to WordPress core, and other projects like WPGraphQL, Atlas Content Modeler, Faust, and more!