When I read the piece by Mark Armstrong of WordPress.com that Atavist was joining ‘WordPress.com parent company Automattic.’ I wondered what it meant.
I mean, on the face of it, when a company such as Atavist (or the New York Times) decides to use a different platform, that’s a matter for the company.
But here we have Atavist joining the parent company of the platform. That’s a whole different thing.
First thing though, before I started reading the article was to hop over to Atavist and find out what I could.
Once there I saw that there was an option to join for free, and that I would need to upgrade to the Individual level at $15/mo for ‘commerce features, design tools, and my own URL and logo.
I am actually writing this post in Atavist, and the first thing I see is that the editing tools are somewhat like Blogo in the way they function: Highlight something you have typed, and a set of tools appear whereby you can add a link, make text H1, H2, etc, add a quote, make text italic or bold.
There is also a PLUS (+) button. When you click that you can add a whole range of things - an image, a video, a pull quote, a piece of code, etc. And these additional pieces are called Blocks - which has echoes of Gutenberg.
For those that don’t know, Gutenberg is currently a plugin for WordPress.org and the intention is that it will become part of ‘core’ (the code that is part of WordPress as opposed to being in a plugin) in WordPress.org when version 5 comes out.
I wonder which platform introduced the word Blocks first?
And now that I look at the bottom of the page where I am drafting this I can see ‘Add a section’, which immediately reminds me of blocks in Gutenberg.
The big question from a coding point of view is how Atavist will transition to WordPress.
Perhaps it is from Atavist that Matt Mullenweg got his inspiration to branch out in to Gutenberg?
Or perhaps Atavist has been preparing for its transition to WordPress and these blocks and sections are a recent addition, though I think probably not.
Is there perhaps something proprietary in the code of Atavist that meant it ‘had’ to become part of Automattic in order that Automattic could do what it wants with the code changes in Gutenberg?
Well, these are just thoughts as I wonder what the dynamic is that brought the two together.
What is going to happen to the pricing model for Atavist when it joins Automattic?