Word count adds distracting motion to status bar

When the Word Count plugin is enabled, typing in a document creates distracting motion in the status bar.

This is because the default font (Inter) has proportional numbers. The digit “1” is thinner than the rest. So as the character count changes from “xx0” to “xx1” to “xx2”, the placement of other text in the status bar changes, and that looks like motion of the text.

There’s enough text moving that it becomes super distracting to me. I had to turn off Word Count to do focused writing.

I’ve found a different workaround:

Most fonts like Inter that have proportional numbers will also have tabular numbers.

Adding this to my custom CSS file makes the status bar use tabular numbers, which removes the text motion when the numbers change. (The changing digits are also motion, but it’s small and localized, more like flickering, and much easier to ignore.)

.status-bar {
  font-variant-numeric: tabular-nums;
}

Environment

  • Operating system: Windows 10
  • Obsidian version: v0.12.3
8 Likes

I am gonna cathegorize this as an accessibility request and we prefer those to be in feature request for now.

That is so satisfying.

Thank you for the tip! No more back and forth moving text on the bottom of the screen.

Personally, I don’t care much, but I know several people that do. Using tabular numbers is quite a nifty and useful hack!

1 Like