Show invisibles not working in v1.8


I have toggled Show Invisibles, but nothing renders. :frowning:

There was a recent post about Atom Dark readability (now closed). The advice was to adjust the style sheet. However, this does not change the rest of the UI which is difficult if not impossible to read. It should not be necessary to switch the UI theme in order to read information.



Different people have different ideas of what’s readable. That’s why we have themeable editors.


What’s your point?


I have Show Invisibles always turned on for all code languages. It renders in v1.8.

I believe what @DamnedScholar is saying that the point of an editor with themes is that if you don’t like the theme, it is pretty simple to change it. No matter what the theme is, someone will find fault with it, that’s why the editor is themable in the first place.

So, unless you’re suggesting that Atom somehow magically do light-level testing in your room and ask you to perform visibility and color-blindness tests before allowing you to use Atom, themes is the best answer that we’re going to have :grinning:


That there are a lot of themes out there and you should try them.

The reason why editors (and many applications that are intended to have people stare at them for long periods of time) are themeable is because people have different needs and preferences regarding readability. You don’t find Atom Dark to be readable. I feel like its tabs are too clumped together. Neither of us are forced to use it. Your expectation that the default theme should be perfectly tailored to you is unreasonable.


This is incorrect. Everything inside the Atom window is displayed using web technologies. You can change anything you want (that’s covered by CSS) via the style sheet.


I have show invisibles enabled, but they are not visible.



You presume too much.


I don’t need to presume a thing when you explicitly state your agenda.


You’ll notice I didn’t say “visible”, since that is a subjective metric. I said that they render, which can be shown objectively here:

  1. Clone the Atom source repository from
  2. Launch Atom in the Atom source repository with atom .
  3. Open the circle.yml file in the root of the Atom repository
  4. Open the Developer Tools from the menu View > Developer > Toggle Developer Tools
  5. Click the Elements tab in the developer tools
  6. Open the search box in the Elements tab with Cmd+F on OS X or Ctrl+F on other platforms
  7. Search for the text “invisible-character”
  8. The 8th result should look like this (depending on your invisible characters settings):

If you have repro steps that show a different result, I’d be interested in trying to replicate the problem.


I did use the term ‘visible’.


In your first post, the question was whether or not they rendered, not whether or not you could see them.

If you’re otherwise happy with the syntax theme you are using but can’t see the invisible characters, you can address them in your styles.less with the selector atom-text-editor::shadow invisible-character and use whatever color works best for you.


Comments are frequently posted about the readability of Atom’s interface, and closing down discussion will not help make an issue go away, if something needs fixing.

On a colour calibrated Apple monitor, the default style sheet for Atom Dark (syntax theme) renders invisibles, invisible; and the default style sheet One Dark (UI theme) fails to clearly render some useful information.

I hope these comments are helpful.


[Citation needed].

closing down discussion will not help make an issue go away, if something needs fixing.

If you think that something needs fixing, you can contribute to the theme in question. That’s the great thing about open source software.

I’m also not closing down the discussion. I’m saying that there are 1,312 themes and I’m sure that several hundred of them suit your needs, so since you do not feel the desire to contribute to the themes that you personally have issues with, you would benefit from doing some shopping to find one that works for you. Atom Dark and One Dark were both designed by other people who find them readable and pleasant. The fact that you do not does not mean that everybody agrees with you. I’ve been using One O Eight for my syntax theme.