Support » Requests and Feedback » why is the visual editor not visual?

  • This is one of those questions that has been bugging me for years now and I honestly don’t know the answer.

    Why is the visual editor not truly visual?

    What I mean is, when I insert a video, I don’t see the video, when I insert shortcodes, they are not parsed, other than basic images nothing that I input into the editor ever looks exactly the same as what is on the actual page.

    Is there something inherently wrong with the editor, or is there something that I am not doing when I build a custom theme that causes this?

    I am aware of adding custom editor css files, and yes those do help a little bit, but nothing I have tried ever gets me exactly what I see on the front end.

    After all these years, why is this still the case?

    *You know, I have never seen an article on this issue, not even one. It’s like everyone just accepts it and never questions why it is the way it is, so I figured what the heck, no harm no foul in asking.

    Does anyone see a day when anything we put into the editor will be exactly what we see on the front end?

    Is that even being worked on anywhere?

    I ask because I even see some great frameworks where you can use ‘building blocks’ to build page templates, yet you just have to know in your mind what it is going to look like as none of the shortcodes are parsed (if that is even the right word)

Viewing 4 replies - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
  • I am new at all of this, and the “Visual Editor” would be my complaint if I had one. However, I accept it as being more for coders who understand it than for competition in any retail market where WYSIWYG actually happens.



    Forum Moderator

    nothing that I input into the editor ever looks exactly the same as what is on the actual page.

    To some extent, this can depend upon the theme that you are using. Theme authors are now encouraged to include an editor-style.css file in their themes that should help to provide a reasonable facsimile of the actual output on the front end.

    Hi @esmi
    Yes, I am fully aware of the editor-style.css and I take as full advantage of it as possible.

    This still has zero effect of the visual editor actually parsing the shortcodes in the visual mode so we get an accurate representation of the page.

    Think of all the ‘frameworks’ that rely heavily upon shortcodes for adding columns, or how about forms, etc.. see what I mean?

    I can insert [ form id=3 ] and see that, where I would MUCH RATHER see the form that the shortcode generates on the front end.

    I suppose I just do not understand why that is not possible after all this time. I’m guessing it is a rather complicated problem, or else someone like ‘Matt’ would have gotten tired of looking at the way it works now and would have changed it.

    I just find it hard to explain to new WordPress users to try and ‘visualize’ what it is going to look like when their form/tabs/etc actually display on the front end when they are simply staring at a piece of text that refuses to do its job on the admin side.



    very awesome

    As my personal opinion I don’t want to see the HTML generated by shortcodes in my visual editor area. The biggest reason for this is that editors that don’t know as much as we do (our clients) will see the content of the shortcode instead of the shortcode itself and complain bitterly that they can’t edit it – “I can see it in the editor, why can’t I edit it? You told me that I could edit things, but I can’t!! I’m not paying your bill!!” Ok, that’s a little exagerated, but it’s sometimes not that far off the mark.

    On top of that there’s also a fair bit of a performance overheard from parsing the sortcodes. This would need to be done via an AJAX call. There’s no way that a JavaScript system for WYSIWYG display can ever parse a server-side script. That’s really processor-intensive and a big waste of your servers resources.

Viewing 4 replies - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
  • The topic ‘why is the visual editor not visual?’ is closed to new replies.