Open WordPress is a Closed Development Shop?

WordPress over 20 years has a stellar record for using open source code and open processes. The WordPress core code is available for free along with many  free or low cost themes and plugins that set the  layout and performance of WordPress sites. As a result WordPress has a commanding usage  of 42.5% by the top 10 million website in the World,.  WordPress core code uses open standard versions of HTML, PHP, , CSS , JavaScript and the MariaDB or MySQL. 

Automattic, ,owner of WordPress, has lead open campaigns for  Accessibility, broad Mobile use, support for a number of  JavaScript libraries, and strong adoption of the REST API. In fact, WordPress has had  a strong reputation for Backward Compatibility. But in fact, backward compatibility and more limited coding choices is the current fly in the WP ointment.

WordPress Begins Closing Down

An accumulation of security, performance and and competitive reasons has seen WordPress closing down traditional development options. For example, more than 100 thousand WordPress sites get hacked every year But the cause of those hacks are out of date WordPress core versions, weak passwords and old or incompatible theme or plugin versions.
To combat these problems WordPress  polices password suggesting tough default password and requiring the the user to okay passwords that are not strong. WordPress also  provides options for automatic updates to core code, themes and plugin. Hosting Services for WordPress are encouraged to do the same. Warnings are issued if a theme or plugin has not been tested by its developer in the last 3 versions of theWordPress core code.

In sum, WordPress is cracking down on security and its just in time as updates now arrive every 3-10 days for most themes and plugins. Hence the  attraction of Managed WordPress sites where all updates ad backups are done automatically  by the Hosting Service. But the consequence is a loss of WordPress  backward compatibility.

Performance Factor

Google and at least a dozen SEO Marketing firms have made it clear website performance of 2 seconds or less is the basic customers expectations. So Google in 2018 made mobile speed a ranking factor along with responsive designs. And in 2021 Google extended that to all web pages. 

Both WordPress core team and PageBuilder developers  were alert to the responsive design needs making them a priority:

So now page designers can layout and style a page for every breakpoint – full site, tablet, mobile phone. To meet the 2 second page response time target, all the developers have resorted to using high speed JavaScript frameworks. Here Vue.js is emrging as a top choice for speed and ease of use. WordPress chose Facebook’s React.js and along with REST API, as Gutenberg Block Editor standards

This is where the plot thickens because the good folks at WPTavern are saying like a lot of YouTube and Medium reviewers of things WordPress – Bricks: Laying Down a Foundation in the WordPress Page Builder Market. In effect Justin Tadlock is saying that is not just a full feature theme-Builder. But Bricks has a  fast editing mode and fast website runtime speed. And the Bricks team give credit to Vue.js, the JavaScript framework the WordPress team passed on for Gutenberg.  

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