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What's the story behind the observable logo?

Does anyone know what is the story behind the monocular O logo?



I drew it on a piece of paper. The immediate inspiration was coding fonts that have a dotted zero, like M+ and Source Code Pro, but it also looked like Theta (𝚯), which I think lent a sort of mathy vibe. It was initially typeset as the O in Observable, like 𝝝bservable, which was goofy and we abandoned that idea pretty quickly. The first version that I designed had pretty bad proportions, like:

CleanShot 2021-07-29 at 19.17.44@2x

But Maya quickly resolved that and separated the logo from the wordmark. She also made the dot larger, which made it look way better - comparison in some favicons (old on left, new on right)


There’s not a ton of hidden meaning behind the thing. Just felt right at the time and looked cool.


Maybe entertainingly we’ve left the older versions in places like GitHub for the local development OAuth flow:


Hey Visnu :wave:, let me know if you’re ever in NYC :slight_smile:

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Helloooo will do! Think you’ll be there for a while? Also, pardon the thread hijacking @drio :sweat_smile:

Yes! Unless something drags me away, this is the spot for me. The city just seems right and I live a few blocks away from the best bagel place in Brooklyn. They also have weather here, which has been a fun experience.


Hey, no worries! Thank you for sharing.