WP errors and their solutions – UX edition for beginners

Many WordPress users do not have the technical background to troubleshoot programming code errors. However, after the installation itself, the future of the website is entirely in their hands, as it provides a robust set of content editing tools that includes manipulation of text, various media as well as their layout. Therefore, it is also important that the user interface is simply and clearly designed to provide a seamless user experience ( UX for short). In my experience, WordPress is also a leader in this area, but some controls are still so unfortunately placed for historical or other reasons that the average user often has trouble finding them.

It’s not a bug, It’s a feature!

In this non-technical part of our series, we will look at these UX beauty flaws.

As the introduction suggests, in this case these are not system errors from a technical point of view, but rather from a UX design point of view. Some may argue that this is a matter of opinion, but the experience with real users points to several recurring problems.

Disable comments on articles and sites

The “Comments” item in the main menu of the admin interface is used to administer specific comments. Here you will find their overview, deletion or modification. In addition, many users are familiar with the Settings – Discussion menu, where users can manage the appearance of comments, as well as their global enable or disable. But what if we only want to allow or disallow comments in an article or page? The description, which can be found in the Discussion menu, clearly speaks of this possibility. However, many users have trouble finding this setting. You would need to look for it in the advanced settings of individual articles in the Edit Post menu, it is only present in the Quick edit function on the article list page.

Deleting the standard “Uncategorized” category

You may often need to list categories on a website, especially for additional visitor orientation, such as a sidebar widget. But what about the preset “Uncategorized” category, which many people forget to rename right from the start, even if they don’t use it at all? Can’t delete, will I “bad” the list of categories forever? The solution is simple – this category can also be deleted, but only if another default category is set to which they will belong. However, we will not find this setting in the articles / categories menu where we might expect it, but in the writing settings. Just mark another category as the default and voila, the category “Uncategorized” can be deleted immediately.

Crop images and format them

WordPress is a very suitable platform for easy integration of media such as images. Just click on Media and you can happily upload images and insert them almost anywhere. With a little effort, you can adjust these images to your liking by cropping and reducing them at the same time. However, we will not see this editing menu directly when inserting an image into an article or page, you must “pre-prepare” the image in another menu, which you can only access through the media library. Just search for your image, click the edit button, on the next screen again to edit the image and we can crop: drag the appropriate viewport with the mouse and click the button[img] quite the top left just above the image , although several users tend to unsuccessfully click save . If you don’t like the new viewport, you can undo your action by clicking the cancel button, otherwise you can save the viewport. All other uses of this medium will work with this new viewport. If you need another viewport, this action can also be undone – in the same menu by clicking Restore original image .

Similarly, the user may be confused by the formatting of images and their size in the menu when pasting into text. This menu is available after inserting the image into the editor by clicking on the button in the upper left corner of the image. [img] Among other settings, it provides the ability to reduce the image to 60% of its size, for example. However, after saving the changes and then resizing in this way, the scale is not preserved, but the image updated in this way is again at an imaginary 100 percent. Some people may like this procedure, while others will prefer to return the image to its original size before editing – this option is available in the advanced image editing settings.

Have you noticed that WordPress provides up to three different levels of image editing?

– The first level is directly when uploading and importing an image, when WordPress generates separate files according to preset sizes (configurable in the settings / media menu).
The second level is shrinking, flipping or cropping in the media library and
– the third level is the menu of the already loaded media.

Each of these levels allows for a different type of adjustment – 1. Global edits for all imported images 2. editing the media (image) for all its uses and finally 3. edits for a specific instance – for example, the occurrence of an image in an article. When the user is aware of this logic, he has a really powerful media manipulation tool in his hands, which allows him to make mass and general, as well as concrete and specific adjustments.

At the same time, however, this system is a bit cluttered with several image editors, which are not quite intuitively available (for example, the need to reopen the image via the menu / media, even though another menu will be displayed immediately after import)

Unwanted spaces between paragraphs in texts

It may have already happened to you: You carefully prepare the article (for example in an MS Word document or directly in the WordPress article editor), making sure that each paragraph is at a logical distance according to the structure of the article. However, after (copying and) saving the article, the result does not correspond to your ideas at all: the lines are strangely decided, somewhere there is no separation of paragraphs, somewhere there are empty lines. This is due to the fact that the WordPress editor has automatic formatting called wpautop which converts double line indents (“enters”) to html paragraphs (< p> …< / p> ). The result of this automatic formatting is sometimes unnoticed, but depending on the theme (and the style associated with it), it can cause the above problems. This problem is not easily solved by any settings within the WordPress kernel, but it can be bypassed by some modules that address it directly. These include, for example, PS Disable Auto Formatting or No WPautop .

Similar problems that WordPress users may have are an understandable consequence of the constant development in the spirit of Open-Source. No developer can completely design a similarly complex system from the ground up, so some features may “stick out” of the overall design philosophy for a while, just to be better integrated into it in the next – newer version of WordPress.

The very occurrence of similar problems with the UI (user interface) is therefore not a mistake in the true sense of the word – but we must try to come up with suggestions that can still move this state towards better integration. At the same time, system developers may find it convenient to adhere to certain clearly defined design rules that can help distinguish real UX problems from subjective preferences.

Conclusion

As a CMS WordPress user, do you have similar or completely different problems when the system’s functions are not arranged as you would like?

Have you ever found a simple solution to your long-term problems right in your WordPress settings?

Write to us about your experience.

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Multifunkčný babrák vo Webikon. Front-endový vývojár, copywriter a fotograf, ktorý sa snaží pomáhať fanúšikom systému WordPress i za cenu hrabania sa v back-ende nášho obľúbeného CMSka. Vo voľnom čase je veľkým fanúšikom progamingu.

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