WordPress 5.2 release brought improvements to the block editor, site health check, several bug fixes and minor enhancements.
In this article we will go through its main features and improvements
Improved Fatal Error Protection in WordPress
The most common WordPress errors are usually fatal errors that stop users from accessing the admin dashboard.
Users are then required to undo changes using an FTP client or ask their hosting company for support.
WordPress 5.2 introduces a new recovery mode for site administrators. In case of a fatal error, you will see a message that ‘This site is experiencing technical difficulties’.
WordPress will then send an email to the admin email address with a special login link.
Using that link, you will be able to login to the WordPress admin area. After that, you can undo any changes that may have triggered the fatal error.
This feature will be a blessing for many beginners who find it quite difficult to fix such errors.
Block Editor Updates in WordPress 5.2
The WordPress block editor (Gutenberg) was introduced in WordPress 5.0. Since then there has been continuous development on the block editor to further improve it.
The new WordPress block editor is much faster than the older classic editor. However, it could get slower when editing lengthier blog posts with tons of blocks.
It will now shave 35% off the load time for massive posts. WordPress 5.2 also cut the key press time in half, which would make it feel way more responsive when you are typing.
The goal of WordPress is to democratize publishing and making the software accessible for all users. WordPress 5.2 brought several accessibility improvements to the block editor.
- The block editor will now support reduced motion settings in user’s browser.
- The post URL slug will have better labeling and help text, which will make it easier to locate.
- Block editor will have a clearer and consistent focus styling for keyboard navigating through landmarks.
- WordPress 5.2 also brought improved screen-reader experience with new speak messages. Existing speak messages are also improved to be clearer.
Introduction of New Blocks
WordPress 5.2 also introduces the following new blocks in the default editor. Some of them were already available as Widgets, but now you can use them in posts and pages as well.
- RSS block – It will allow you to easily fetch and display any RSS feed in your WordPress posts and pages.
- Search block – Add the default WordPress search feature in your content.
- Calendar block – Displays a calendar of your blog posts allowing users to click on a date to view posts published on that day.
- Tag Cloud block – Displays the tag cloud in your content.
A New Block Manager Tool
By default, the block editor comes with several default blocks. You also have plugins and themes adding their own blocks as well.
However, the reality is that you’ll probably never use all those blocks. Most users usually stick to a handful of blocks for writing all their content.
WordPress 5.2 introduces a new block management tool, which will allow you to hide blocks that you don’t want to use.