I’m in the process of rebuilding many of the posts and pages on my site, so I will be temporarily taking everything offline, and putting them back up as I reprocess them. Here is my current progress:
I’ve been testing all the big block collections, and it’s time for Ultimate Blocks. Not to be confused with Ultimate Addons, a different block collection.
Ultimate Blocks comes with 20 different blocks, let’s see if I want any of them in my personal collection:
- Button — It says “improved” but since I didn’t see the original, hard to say. It has four different sizes, flex/fixed/full width, colours or transparent, rounded or square, etc. What doesn’t work for me is that it is just one button…if you wanted to put several side-by-side (like a horizontal menu), you’d have to wrap it in some other kind of box/container.
- Call to Action — Title, text and a button, nothing unusual, but I do like the button is set up so that it overlaps the container (i.e. half-in, half-out). Not bad.
- Click to Tweet — I suppose if you were trying to get a campaign going, you could write a default tweet and then click the button to share.
As you can see from about 10 of my last 20 posts, I’m on a run testing out various blocks on my Gutenberg site. The next “collection” to consider is called “premium blocks” and we’ll see if it lives up to the name. There are 12 blocks in the collection:
- Accordion — A really nice simple accordion block. I already have one with massive styling with Stackable, or highly workable with Kadence, but if I didn’t, this one would definitely get the job done. Easy to add items above each other, and then once created, to change typography, spacing, borders, padding, and even shadows. Nice.
- Banner — I have no use for it, but it is a block to put an image with a title and description over it, with some basic animation. There are six options, and depending on which you choose, the title and description pop up when you hover, or the description is added, or the title slides in, etc.
I’ve already worked through a bunch of major block collections, and chosen which ones make the grade and which ones don’t. So I had seen the recommendations for Orbit Fox and thought I would give them a try. Except I already tried Otter’s collection by itself.
When I opened up the one called Orbit Fox, I got the exact same block options as Otter. They’re identical, and I’ve already reviewed them (https://polywogg.ca/trying-out-otter-blocks-for-my-wordpress-site/). Well that was a waste of time.
But, while I’m here, I can check out the plugin’s other features I guess.
- Social Sharing Module — This allows you to create sticky buttons on the left side of your screen for your content, making your share buttons always visible. Umm, how about no? It totally doesn’t integrate with your theme in any way, shape, or literally, form.
- Gutenberg Blocks — Pass, as I said above.
- Uptime Monitor — I already have that in Jetpack.
I’ve already gone through and reviewed the blocks from various collections — Default+Jetpack, Advanced Gutenberg, Atomic Blocks, Kadence, QodeBlocks, Ultimate Addons and Stackable. Stackable was the clear winner for me, and I kept a handful from Kadence + Ultimate Addons + Advanced Gutenberg, plus the defaults. I ditched all of the Atomic Blocks and Qodeblocks — there were just better options available or I didn’t need the blocks they had to offer.
I’m going to do a quick test of 13 blocks from Otter to see if any are worth keeping. One of their “big” offerings is built-in animation like bouncing or fades, none of which I have much use/need for…some great transitions, just not for anything I’m doing. And I’m a little disturbed it adds animations to EVERY block, not just the Otter ones.
- About Author — A simple bio block that pulls data from WordPress admin about the author of the current post.
Across the eight block collections that I’m reviewing (default Gutenberg, JetPack, Advanced Gutenberg, Atomic Blocks, Kadence, Qodeblock, Stackable, and Ultimate Addons), there are a bunch of blocks that perform special functions. A couple show up in multiple collections; others in only one. Let’s run through them quickly.
Table of Contents
Ultimate has a fantastic block called “table of contents”. Just like in Word or other word processing programs, the page generates the ToC all by itself by recognizing where else in the page / post you have used headings. I frequently use H4, so I limit it to only grabbing those, and the blue block above is an example of it. I can style the background, width, texts, etc., even make the contents collapsible. Heck, I can even change the colour of the bullets…what’s not to love? » Read the rest