pillar 1.5.1 2021-03-05


Bug fixes

  • Color and formatting can now be reliably turned off by setting the "cli.num_colors" option to 1 (#269).


  • Add examples for new functions (#264).
  • Fix lifecycle badges everywhere.

pillar 1.5.0 2021-02-22

Breaking changes

  • obj_sum() now always returns a string. pillar_shaft.list() iterates over its elements and calls obj_sum() for each (#137).

  • Breaking: print.pillar() and print.pillar_ornament() now show <pillar> <pillar_ornament> in the first line (#227, #228).

  • pillar has been re-licensed as MIT (#215).


  • All printing code has been moved from tibble to pillar (#179), including glimpse() (#234). This concentrates the printing code in one package and allows for better extensibility.

  • Improve formatting for "Surv" and "Surv2" classes from the survival package (#199).

  • Vectors of the vctrs_unspecified() class are formatted better (#256).

  • Arrays are now formatted by showing only their first slice (#142).

  • Avoid wrapping extra column names with spaces (#254).


pillar 1.4.7 2020-11-20

  • Adapt to changed environment on CRAN’s Solaris machine.

pillar 1.4.6 2020-07-10

  • Restore compatibility with R 3.2.

pillar 1.4.5 2020-07-09


  • New pillar.min_chars option allows controlling the minimum number of characters shown for a character column (#178, @statsmaths).

  • bit64::integer64() columns are now formatted the same way as numeric columns (#175).

  • New align() to support easy alignment of strings within a character vector (existing function exported by @davidchall, #185).



  • Use lifecycle package.

  • Remove compatibility code for R < 3.3.

pillar 1.4.4 2020-05-05

  • obj_sum() uses vctrs::vec_size() internally.

  • is_vector_s3.default() is soft-deprecated and no longer used. Please ensure that vctrs::vec_is() is TRUE for your class.

  • Rely on vctrs for type abbreviations.

pillar 1.4.3 2019-12-20

  • new_pillar_shaft_simple() gains na argument to control appearance of NA values.

  • String columns are quoted if at least one value needs quotes (#171).

  • Apply subtle style to list_of columns (#172).

  • Fix formatting if mantissa is very close to 1 (#174).

  • Use as.character() instead of as_character().

  • Remove compatibility with testthat < 2.0.0.

pillar 1.4.2 2019-06-29

  • List columns are shown with their perceived dimensions, which may be different from those stored in the "dim" attribute. Regression introduced in 1.4.0 (#167).

  • Add ellipsis to vec_ptype_abbr() method.

pillar 1.4.1 2019-05-28

  • More careful specification of minimum package versions for the dependencies (#165).
  • Fix type_sum.vctrs_vctr() that also led to a NOTE in R CMD check.
  • Resolve vec_is() at runtime instead of during .onLoad() (#163, @lionel-).
  • Implement methods for vctrs objects.

pillar 1.4.0 2019-05-11

Breaking changes

  • type_sum() forwards to vctrs::vec_ptype_abbr() (#134). This makes sure that list_of columns (for values of the same type) are properly displayed. The value returned for factor and complex remains unchanged, because this will change in vctrs.
  • The class argument to new_pillar_shaft() deprecates the existing subclass argument. Passing a subclass argument leads to a warning once per session (#157).


  • Removed extra space for pillars with a negative value of lower magnitude than the largest positive value (example: -1 and 23).
  • 0-col tibble and matrix columns are now formatted with a capital containing [,0] and an empty shaft (#149).


  • squeeze() is now faster (because the width computation in pillar_shaft.numeric() now uses more arithmetics instead of string concatenation). Further speedups may require implementation of crucial parts in C (#147).
  • Styling output is faster: an expensive check for availability of colored output is carried out only once per call to colonnade(), and styling is implemented manually (#133, @jimhester).


  • All internal S3 classes have the pillar_ prefix (#156).
  • Only check native output on Windows, due to subtle differences when running on Linux in a latin1 locale.

pillar 1.3.1 2018-12-15

Bug fixes

  • Fix off-by-one error in distribution of empty space (#141).

Visible changes

  • NA in names is no longer escaped with backticks.
  • Don’t add quotes for pillars formatted with their format() method (tidyverse/tibble#448).

Internal changes

  • Update base type abbrevs to rlang 0.3.0 (#140, @lionel-).
  • Tests work again in a 256-color terminal (#129).

pillar 1.3.0 2018-07-14

Visible changes

  • Unknown data types are formatted using format(), not as.character() (#120).

  • Multi-tier colonnades can always fill the last tier, even if the width isn’t a proper multiple of getOption("width"). (Example: options(width = 80, tibble.width = 200) will print a wide tibble in three tiers, each 80 characters wide, with a total width of 240 characters.)

  • Fixed mixed formatting (showing some pillars with maximum, and some with minimum width). If a pillar’s minimum width is smaller than getOption("width"), it is shown nevertheless, abbreviated with dots if necessary.

Interface changes

Performance improvements

  • Printing large multi-tier colonnades is much faster, the code that distributes pillars over tiers uses a much simpler and much faster algorithm (tidyverse/tibble#422).

  • Printing is now faster overall, because less work is done for formatting in “subtle” style (gray of a fixed level), and because fansi::strip_sgr() is used instead of crayon::strip_style().

  • Slightly faster printing of colonnades by reusing an intermediate result.


  • pillar() no longer adds backticks if title is non-syntactic.

  • colonnade() supports data frames and matrices. When printing, each sub-column is shown individually, using a title that resembles the syntax used to access it. Also supports recursively nested data frames (with data frame or matrix columns).

  • Added fuzz tests for character colonnades of varying widths.

  • Use fansi::substr_ctl() in favor of crayon::col_substr().

pillar 1.2.3 2018-05-25

  • Eliminate CRAN check warning about undeclared withr dependency.
  • More defensive test to address CRAN check failures on Solaris.
  • colonnade() now handles pillars named "sep" (#115).
  • pillar_shaft.character() gains min_width argument.

pillar 1.2.2 2018-04-26

  • Whole numbers are printed without a decimal dot again. Numbers that are the result of a whole number divided by a power of 10 (subject to a tolerance to account for floating-point imprecision) are shown without trailing decimal zeros, even if these zeros are significant according to the pillar.sigfig option (#105).
  • New new_pillar_title() and new_pillar_type() to support consistent output in glimpse() (#31).
  • New format_type_sum() generic that allows overriding the formatting of the type summary in the capital (#73).
  • The digits.secs option is respected when computing the width for date-time values (#102).

pillar 1.2.1 2018-02-27


  • Turned off using subtle style for digits that are considered insignificant. Negative numbers are shown all red. Set the new option pillar.subtle_num to TRUE to turn it on again (default: FALSE).
  • The negation sign is printed next to the number again (#91).
  • Scientific notation uses regular digits again for exponents (#90).
  • Groups of three digits are now underlined, starting with the fourth before/after the decimal point. This gives a better idea of the order of magnitude of the numbers (#78).
  • Logical columns are displayed as TRUE and FALSE again (#95).
  • The decimal dot is now always printed for numbers of type numeric. Trailing zeros are not shown anymore if all displayed numbers are whole numbers (#62).
  • Decimal values longer than 13 characters always print in scientific notation.

Bug fixes

  • Numeric values with a "class" attribute (e.g., Duration from lubridate) are now formatted using format() if the pillar_shaft() method is not implemented for that class (#88).
  • Very small numbers (like 1e-310) are now printed correctly (tidyverse/tibble#377).
  • Fix representation of right-hand side for getOption("pillar.sigfig") >= 6 (tidyverse/tibble#380).
  • Fix computation of significant figures for numbers with absolute value >= 1 (#98).

New functions

  • New styling helper style_subtle_num(), formatting depends on the pillar.subtle_num option.

pillar 1.1.0 2018-01-14

  • NA values are now shown in plain red, without changing the background color (#70).
  • New options to control the output, with defaults that match the current behavior unless stated otherwise:
    • pillar.sigfig to control the number of significant digits, for highlighting and truncation (#72),
    • pillar.subtle to specify if insignificant digits should be printed in gray (#72),
    • pillar.neg to specify if negative digits should be printed in red,
    • pillar.bold to specify if column headers should be printed in bold (default: FALSE, #76),
    • pillar.min_title_chars to specify the minimum number of characters to display for each column name (default: 15 characters, #75).
  • Shortened abbreviations for types: complex: cplx -> cpl, function: fun -> fn, factor: fctr -> fct (#71).
  • Date columns now show sub-seconds if the digits.secs option is set (#74).
  • Very wide tibbles now print faster (#85).

pillar 1.0.1 2017-11-27

  • Work around failing CRAN tests on Windows.

pillar 1.0.0 2017-11-20

Initial release.

User functions

pillar(x, title = NULL, width = NULL, ...)
colonnade(x, has_row_id = TRUE, width = NULL, ...)
squeeze(x, width = NULL, ...)

Functions for implementers of data types

new_pillar_shaft_simple(formatted, ..., width = NULL, align = "left", min_width = NULL, na_indent = 0L)
new_pillar_shaft(x, ..., width, min_width = width, subclass)
new_ornament(x, width = NULL, align = NULL)


style_num(x, negative, significant = rep_along(x, TRUE))

Testing helper

expect_known_display(object, file, ..., width = 80L, crayon = TRUE)

Own S3 methods

pillar_shaft(x, ...) # AsIs, Date, POSIXt, character, default, list, logical, numeric
type_sum(x) # AsIs, Date, POSIXct, data.frame, default, difftime, factor, ordered
is_vector_s3(x) # Date, POSIXct, data.frame, default, difftime, factor, ordered
obj_sum(x) # AsIs, POSIXlt, default, list
extra_cols(x, ...) # squeezed_colonnade