Floating Back-to-top button for Markdown documents

created: 4 minute read

You can quickly add a floating Back-to-top button to your Markdown documents in just two steps by applying CSS commands.

img A floating Back-to-top button in Markdown documents added via CSS commands.

First, add the following style sheet commands to your Markdown CSS file:

/* Enable smooth scrolling */
@media screen and (prefers-reduced-motion: no-preference) {
  html {
    scroll-behavior: smooth;
  }
}

/* Style the button */
.top-link {
  transition:       all .25s ease-in-out;
  position:         fixed;
  bottom:           0;
  right:            0;
  display:          inline-flex;
  color:            #000000;

  cursor:           pointer;
  align-items:      center;
  justify-content:  center;
  margin:           0 2em 2em 0;
  border-radius:    50%;
  padding:          .25em;
  width:            1em;
  height:           1em;
  background-color: #F8F8F8;
}

Once added, the only thing you have to do is add the following two lines to your Markdown documents:

<a class="top-link hide" href="#top"></a>
<a name="top"></a>

In the preview mode of your document, a button with a top-arrow should now appear in the right bottom corner.

img A Markdown document in DEVONthink with a floating Back-to-top button in the right bottom corner.

Place the <a name="top"></a> tag at the position in your document to which you want to jump, e.g., right after the top heading. I usually place the tag right above the table of contents (TOC), for which add the `` to my documents. To achieve the TOC layout shown in the screenshot above, I additionally added the following style sheet commands to my CSS file:

.TOC {
    background:     #f4f5f8 none repeat scroll 0 0; //f3f6f6
    border:         0px solid #aaa;
    border-radius:  10px;
    display:        table;
    font-size:      95%;
    margin-bottom:  1em;
    padding-left:   2px;
    padding-top:    2px;
    padding-bottom: 2px;
    padding-right:  2px;
    width:          100%;
}

.TOC:before {
    content:        "Table of Contents";
    font-weight:    bold;
    font-size:      1.1em;
    color:          #3973ad;
    padding-left:   1em;
    margin-bottom: -1em;
    line-height:    3em;
}

.TOC li, .TOC ul, .TOC ul li{
    list-style:     decimal;
}

These commands are adapted to work for DEVONthink’s MultiMarkdown files. For other editors you may have to change .TOC to .toc.

In general, I’m using a custom-made CSS file which I called GitHub Flavor. You can find it on GitHub, where you can also see further screenshots.

Before I implemented this CSS solution, I inserted both Back-to-top buttons and the TOC manually via an Applescript. This was a rather static solution as after any changes to the document’s headings I had to manually re-run the script. However, you can still find that script on GitHub, just in case you want play around with it yourself.

Floating Back-to-top button in DEVONthink To Go

To enable the Back-to-top button in DEVONthink To Go (DTTG) Markdown files, add the following custom CSS in the DTTG Markdown settings:

@media screen and (prefers-reduced-motion: no-preference) {
  html {
    scroll-behavior: smooth;
  }
}

.top-link {
    transition:     all .25s ease-in-out;
    position:       fixed;
    bottom:         0;
    right:          0;
    display:        inline-flex;
    color:          #000000;

    cursor:         pointer;
    align-items:    center;
    justify-content:center;
    margin:         0 2em 2em 0;
    border-radius:  50%;
    padding:        .25em;
    width:          1em;
    height:         1em;
    background-color: #F8F8F8;
}
Left: The rendered Markdown text with a formatted TOC and a floating Back-to-top button (lower right corner) in DEVONthink To Go (DTTG). Right: DTTG's Markdown settings menu, where you can insert custom CSS.

To achieve the TOC layout shown in the screenshot above, additionally add the following commands:

.TOC {
    background:     #272A2B none repeat scroll 0 0;
    border:         0px solid #aaa;
    border-radius:  15px;
    display:        table;
    font-size:      95%;
    color:          #0c9fd0;
    margin-bottom:  1em;
    padding-top:    1em !important;
    padding-right:  1em;//calc(100%-5px);
    width:          100%;
}

.TOC li, .TOC ul, .TOC ol, .TOC ul li, .TOC ol li{
    list-style:     decimal;
}

.TOC:before {
    content:        "Table of Contents";
    font-weight:    bold;
    font-size:      1.1em;
    color:          #0b88b2;
    padding-left:   1em;
    margin-bottom:  -1em;
}

Acknowledgements

The implementation of the Back-to-top button is based on these two blog posts:

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