Show left-hand cell names when window is narrow

I tend to have smaller window widths than Observer prefers … thus the cell names to the left are cropped.

Is there a way for me to have the cell names visible for narrower windows?


I’d love to see this as well, especially since I often have the dev tools open.

As a workaround you could create a user style (e.g. via the Stylus extension) that reserves some fixed space on the left side: {
  padding-left: 10rem;

By the way, is there any chance to have semantic classes added to the UI?

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It might help if the little button that shows up on very narrow windows (e.g. phone displays) which slides the content to the right to show the left column would show up for any browser width less than like 980 pixels or so.

+1 on this request. I run Observable notebook preview with dev tools open on my right-hand side portrait panel and found this chopping of named cells to be limiting at 960px screen width res. Surely, we can probably show cell names at that res.

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Our front-end (currently powered by Tachyons) isn’t intended to be user-editable or customizable beyond the editor preferences we provide. Our focus is on improving the experience “out of the box”, and it’s harder to do that if we also support arbitrary customization.

While I can’t speak for others, I would never expect support for any type of customization of the UI. However, for those of us that still want to customize and are willing to adapt their solutions to changes it would help tremendously to have something to anchor onto (even if it may change or get dropped now and then).

To give an example, I’m still using the custom CSS from this post to display cell names via CSS:

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Semantic class names would solely be for the purpose of end-user customization, no? We don’t use semantic class names.

Happy new year!

Yes, the strategic placement of a few semantic classes throughout your UI would be a gesture towards your users. There would be no public announcement, no support, and classes would be moved or removed by you whenever they get in your way.

Their main benefit for user styles would be that they are more targeted and less likely to change than Tachyons class combinations, and that existing user styles could be adapted to changes more easily.