On Monday, the core team announced that they were discussing the potential of committing the Shortcake plugin to the WordPress core. For those unfamiliar with Shortcake, the plugin enhances the way shortcodes are added to your content. From the plugin description, “Shortcake makes using WordPress shortcodes a piece of cake.” But how does Shortcake work, and should we be excited about this news? A Little Background on Shortcodes and Shortcake WordPress users were introduced to shortcodes in version 2.5, and the interface has remained largely unchanged since. Shortcodes offer an intuitive way for users to action complex code with minimal coding know-how—you’ll know them as the square-bracketed code you can use to add new-and-exciting functionality to your content. In an effort to make WordPress more user-friendly, shortcodes represented a significant step forward. But that’s not to say that shortcodes are perfect. Most notably, the only way to confirm that your shortcodes are working correctly is to preview your post on your website’s front-end—a personal irritation of mine. All of this changes with Shortcake, which brings a new shortcode-UI to the WordPress back-end. It uses TinyMCE
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