Typewriter scrolling

Writing apps like iA Writer and Scrivener have a feature called typewriter scrolling which keeps the cursor centered in the viewport as you type. It’s one of those things I didn’t know I needed until I had the chance to try it out!

If it’s not too much work, it’d be a quick win in attracting the writing crowd to Obsidian.

Here’s what it looks like in iA Writer:



Oh man, I love this feature. It really is great for extended writing or note-taking!


Definitley a ‘cool’ factor to this feature. I love the analog throwback! But I hadn’t actually realized its UI utility until @Saros pointed out how great it is for extended writing sessions. I want it!


+1, this looks like an amazing feature. Thanks for bringing it up! :smile:

Typora also has it. I turn it on and off from time to time, cool feature but I could personally live without it. Just needs a visual clue that it’s activated as it could cause grief with end users not knowing this is activated.

I signed up here specifically to request something similar - code editors like Sublime Text, VS Code etc. have a setting that lets you scroll beyond the bottom of the document. That, or this Typewriter setting would do for me. I find it incredibly uncomfortable typing with my carat permanently at the bottom of the screen.

1 Like

I also registered to this forum to request this feature.

It is very uncomfortable in extended notes to have my cursor at the bottom of the screen.

Perhaps a typing/scrolling mode like this could be added as a potential setting in the Editor section?

For now, I’ve been adding many new-lines to the end of my documents to mimic this type of behavior. Not a great workaround.


Agree and agree, first post here, specifically to request this. I’ve been adding blank lines after my text just to create some space, but it’s an imperfect solution.

1 Like

I would need this too. Really really need this ! It is really convenient to keep the cursor at the middle of the page without scrolling myself. I can write 3000 word on a row and I loose time, focus and inspiration if I had to manually take my cursor at the middle of the page.

1 Like

This ability to have TypeWriter mode would get me out of Ulysses App for developing my writing project(s). Ulysses is MarkDown, the app allows me to export to a variety of publication formats. Ulysses is def not a knowledge base for me. I can see that Obsidian notes will be my preferred KnowledgeBase. Most excellent idea for my visualization.

1 Like

I love this idea, but the typewriter mode in Scrivener isn’t perfect. It forces the cursor to be exactly in one spot. And when you start typing it can pop your line away from you.

A much better system can be found in Vim. It’s called “scrolloff”. It doesn’t force your cursor to be at a certain position. It just prevents it from getting too close to the top or bottom. And you can set how far that is. You have some free wiggle room in the middle of the screen.

So if you set “scrolloff = 10” and you are 20 lines from the bottom, nothing will happen. But as soon as you get 10 lines from the bottom, then it begins working. And if you do like it directly in the middle, you can set “scrolloff = 999”.

If Obsidian’s Vim mode ever gets the ability to use a .vimrc file, I’d love to set “scrolloff=20”, personally.


Yes but I don’t need Vim Mode and I don’t want to use it at all. I just want the option to keep the cursor at the middle of my page. Scrivener one is not perfect I know, the vim-mode scroll off option is a good idea however I don’t want to be forced to use Vim Mode.

1 Like

I agree. It would be great to use that scrolloff feature without needing to enable Vim mode completely. But the scrolloff behaviour is definitely superior, because it doesn’t jarringly snap your view around as much.


I think Obsidian should focus on it’s unique functionalities, or what is mostly related to a knowledge system. As to me, I like the advanced editing features of vim, then I set the default application of .md as vim, so when I feel the document need some special treatment, I just right click it and choose “Open in default app”. I recommend you guys to try the same, set IAWriter as default .md application, and use it when necessary.

Generally my point is what Obsidian counts most to me is it’s a knowledge system that I can easily manage my notes together in a connected and organized way, so the advanced editing features are nice to have, but may considered low priority comparing to those productivity-related ones.

IA Writer is a payed software. Not everyone wants to pay for editing .md files while Obsidian is good at doing it with, adding a custom preview mode and an custom markdown output. The typewriter scrolling is not an advanced editing feature, I think, as IA writer is a minimalist editor so… (and I hate it. The black or white only feature and the lack of difference between level of heading drives me crazy).

I believe every single editing, search, or browsing interface, from text editors, to sidebars, to settings menus to browsing channels on your television should include some amount of buffering context surrounding the focal point. It is an incredible user experience. And I find it speeds up spatial comprehension.

And given that back-linked, networked knowledge apps are by design concerned with surrounding context, I think a UX feature like this is entirely on point.


The typewriter scrolling is not an advanced editing feature, I think, as IA writer is a minimalist editor so…

Hmm though IA writer is a minimalist editor, it is a native app developed in Objective-C, which is actually easier to achieve editing features because the code was in full control. While Obsidian’s editor is based on CodeMirror.js, it is limited by what CodeMirror can or cannot do, so it’s possible that typewriter scrolling is one of those not well supported by CodeMirror, implementing would be a pain in the ass :woozy_face:

Totally agree, I just worried typewriter scroll might be a little bit hard to achieve from technical perspective, you konw, we have so many feature requests, but it’s so little time and developers :joy:

1 Like

There are code mirror addons with typewriter scrolling.

1 Like

I would also like to request this feature. When typing notes in a split pane situation I continually feel the need to reorient the cursor up by using the mouse. It’s distracting. Thanks for your consideration.