GNU ELPA - org-modern


Modern looks for Org
org-modern-0.3.tar, 2022-Mar-08, 70.0 KiB
Daniel Mendler <>
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To install this package, run in Emacs:

M-x package-install RET org-modern RET

Full description

Table of Contents


1 Introduction

This package implements a "modern" style for your Org buffers using font locking and text properties. The package styles headlines, keywords, tables and source blocks. The styling is configurable, you can enable, disable or modify the style of each syntax element individually via the org-modern customization group.

The screenshots shows with org-modern-mode turned on and off. The elegant theme featured in the screenshot is modus-operandi.

This package is still early in its development, so expect bugs and issues in particular due to unfortunate interactions of the variable-pitch and fixed-pitch fonts. You should ensure that your fonts combine harmonically and have approximately the same height. org-modern-mode tries to adjust the tag label display based on the value of line-spacing. This looks best if line-spacing has a value between 0.1 and 0.4 in the Org buffer. Note that org-indent-mode interferes with some of the style elements applied by org-modern-mode, e.g., the block brackets in the fringe.

Bug reports, improvement or style proposals are welcome! Maybe some more Org elements deserve styling or alternative stylings should be offered?

The tag style of org-modern is a poor Emacsien's ripoff from Nicholas Rougier's beautiful svg-tag-mode. In contrast to svg-tag-mode, this package avoids images and uses cheap and fast Emacs box text properties. By only styling the text via text properties, the styled text, e.g., dates or tags stay editable and are easy to interact with.

On the downside, this restricts our flexibility and may lead to font-dependent issues. We do our best, but for example there is no way we can get round corners. Combining org-modern-mode with svg-tag-mode is possible. You can use SVG tags and use the table and block styling from org-modern. If you are interested in further tweaks, Emacs comes with the builtin prettify-symbols-mode which can be used for individual styling of custom keywords.

Another popular alternative is org-superstar, which has a more restricted feature set and mainly adjusts headlines and lists. org-superstar relies on character composition, while org-modern uses text properties, which are considered more future-proof.

The package is available on MELPA. You can install it with package-install if you have the MELPA package repository activated. Then org-modern can be enabled manually in an Org buffer by invoking M-x org-modern-mode. In order to enable org-modern for all your Org buffers, add org-modern-mode to the Org mode hooks.

(add-hook 'org-mode-hook #'org-modern-mode)

Try the following minimal setup in emacs -Q to emulate the looks of the screenshot above.

;; Minimal UI
(menu-bar-mode -1)
(tool-bar-mode -1)
(scroll-bar-mode -1)

;; Choose some fonts
;; (set-face-attribute 'default nil :family "???")
;; (set-face-attribute 'variable-pitch nil :family "???")

;; Add frame borders and window dividers
 '((right-divider-width . 40)
   (internal-border-width . 40)))
(dolist (face '(window-divider
  (face-spec-reset-face face)
  (set-face-foreground face (face-attribute 'default :background)))
(set-face-background 'fringe (face-attribute 'default :background))

;; Org settings
(setq org-hide-emphasis-markers t
      org-pretty-entities t
      org-auto-align-tags nil
      org-tags-column 0
      org-ellipsis "…"
      org-catch-invisible-edits 'show-and-error
      org-special-ctrl-a/e t
      org-insert-heading-respect-content t)

;; Enable org-modern-mode
(add-hook 'org-mode-hook 'org-modern-mode)

2 Contributions

Since this package is part of GNU ELPA contributions require a copyright assignment to the FSF.