April 1, 2019

Greetings Themeco Community!

I've got a lot of ground to cover with this month's Status Report, so let's dig in.

A couple of weeks back we concluded our latest development cycle bringing dynamic content to the builders, a new Extension (our 30th), plus an exciting new update to Skeleton Mode that will eventually be the new Layout pane in our builders. All in all, this was a big step forward on the development front.

It also laid the groundwork for our next development cycle. At present, we are planning to divide the next cycle into two parts given the scope of work involved. I wanted to give you some more info on the one we are working on now.

First off, we are adding to our V2 Element list. You may have noticed there are a few V2 Elements that are not represented (meaning a V2 version of the Classic Element counterpart). Part of this was by design as there are certain V2 Elements you can use that allow for various end results so not all of the Classic Elements needed to be recreated. However, there are a few we have identified as important based on customer feedback that we will be including in this cycle. They are:

  • Icon
  • Card
  • Creative CTA
  • Social
  • Raw Content
  • Testimonial (New)
  • Countdown (New)

This will bring parity to our V2 lineup of Elements that will allow those who want a completely clean break between Classic Elements the opportunity to do so. We will continue to support both Classic and V2 Elements so don't worry if you want to use one or the other.

Going forward, any new Elements will be V2 in nature (meaning more native customization options), but you can very easily restrict some of the more advanced settings for you, your team, or clients by using Simple Mode. This works especially well in conjunction with our exclusive Role Manager for managing who has access to what. We will also be losing the V2 label, just referring to them as Elements and Classic Elements.

Next up, let's talk about the new Grid. We have been testing various ideas ranging from some significant under the hood expansions of our current grid (primarily using Flexbox) to the new CSS grid spec. While powerful, the CSS grid spec brings some serious nuance to laying out a page and it's something we want to be mindful of. We are currently leaning towards going in the direction of the CSS grid spec, but playing around with various implementations.

What this means is that you'll have creative, new ways to layout a page. In addition to features like our Layout Builder, you'll be in for a real treat on what you can do with regards to laying out pages, posts, index pages, and even archive pages.

Given the scope of the new Grid and the Element work above, the Layout Builder may fall in the next cycle. There is certainly some overlap between them so as we get further in, it may make more sense to complete the Layout Builder now. Either way, we'll be sure to keep you up-to-date along the way.

Finally, just a quick note on our redesign. We have about 85% of the site complete. We are very excited about it as it's been a long time coming! Having said that, we want to keep the momentum going we have with these development cycles. There are also certain product announcements we have to make as part of the redesign so we are continuing to work on both concurrently. The priority will always be to our development cycles.

I also want to send a big thank-you to the incredible Themeco team who continually strive for excellence at all times and in all ways. We have some pretty ambitious plans for 2019, and it wouldn't be possible without their tireless commitment and your faithful partnership, so thank-you! It was a great first quarter!

I think that's a good place to wrap up for today. To summarize, this next development cycle will most likely be broken up into two parts (still could be one) that in total include the Elements listed above, our new grid, and the exciting new Layout Builder. There are many more features not listed here as part of those cycles, some of which we want to keep under wraps to be a surprise 🙂 but those are the pillars. Be on the lookout for sneak peeks in the coming weeks via our social channels.

Wishing you a lovely month ahead!