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Observable overview

Observable offers two ways of working: right in your browser creating notebooks, and building data apps in projects.

Below is a brief description of some of their differences, and there's a more in-depth comparison in our Platform and notebooks FAQ.


In Observable notebooks, users can quickly access their data and combine text, analyses, and data visualizations in the same place. Collections of code snippets and low-code features allow anyone to quickly build or modify notebooks. Observable is built for collaboration and sharing, so that more people can explore, work with, and contribute to discussions around data.

Observable notebooks are great for ephemeral, ad hoc data exploration. But notebooks aren’t well-suited for polished dashboards and apps.

Learn more about Observable notebooks


Observable projects let you build data apps that can be hosted anywhere, including on Observable! They are built using the open-source Observable Framework.

Framework combines the power of JavaScript on the front-end for interactive graphics, with any language on the back-end for data preparation and analysis. SQL, Python, R, Rust, Go… you name it.

Learn more about Observable Framework