Hacker News News

Sounds Like Not Even Paul Graham Is Sure WTF to Do About Hacker News

Mr. Graham (flickr.com/pragdave)

Some days, it’s really hard to repress the urge to raze Hacker News and sow the ground with salt. But hey, at least we’re not alone in our frustration. It seems even Paul Graham gets piqued with his community of angry nerds every once in a while.

Like, for instance, when the response to accusations of sexual assault at a Ruby conference is just a big, ugly screaming match. Read More

Hacker News News

Meanwhile, on Hacker News: Yakkin’ About the Debt Ceiling

Cool ominous clouds, God. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Sometimes, as the nation is in the throes of a divisive national debate or major news event, we at Betabeat find ourselves asking: What does Hacker News have to say about this? (They’ve always got something to say.) Prompted by this Washington Post article pondering why Silicon Valley doesn’t seem too bothered by the shutdown and general turmoil in D.C., Betabeat decided to take the pulse of the site and see what its august body of commenters were saying about the next big political panic, the debt ceiling debate.

Take the discussion of this Bloomberg News article: “A U.S. Default Seen as Catastrophe Dwarfing Lehman’s Fall.” Here is a sampling of responses! Read More

Facebook Faceoff

No, Facebook Is Not Deliberately Blocking Logins from TOR

(Photo: Wikipedia)

A post on the blog Arabcrunch.com went viral this morning, hitting the front pages of both Reddit and Hacker News. The post stated that Facebook had begun blocking logins from users attempting to access it from the anonymized browser TOR. For activists and political dissidents who use the Internet to communicate with the outside world in countries where doing so is a crime, being unable to login to Facebook using TOR posed a huge problem. Read More

XX in Tech

To Hug or Not to Hug? Hacker News Commenters Unsure of How to Interact With Real Live Human Ladies

(Photo: Heated Forest)

It’s simply a part of life: sometimes, when you emerge from the depths of the Internet to refill your Star Trek mug with Stumptown coffee, you accidentally encounter a real live girl. You know, that genre of human being that has boobs and always keeps a copy of Lean In on her desk. Your heart might skip a few beats as you’re forced to pass by her, dreading having to interact with someone outside of your favorite IRC channel. A wave of relief hits you as she keeps her eyes glued to the floor and doesn’t acknowledge you: you’re safe. For now. Read More

XX in Tech

Why Can’t the Tech Community Talk About Adria Richards Like Grownups?

Ms. Richards (Photo: twitter)

It all started at a conference devoted to Python. Developer evangelist Adria Richards heard a couple of guys behind her making sexual cracks about big dongles and “forking repos,” and, in a moment of frustration, called them out on Twitter, posting their picture and CCing the conference organizers.

One of the guys was shortly thereafter fired. Today, after an Internet uproar that spilled over into a DDOS attack on her employer SendGrid, Ms. Richards has also been firedpublicly.

And so begins accountability in the age of the creepshot, where you can be called out in public by thousands for something snarked to the dude next to you–and where the person who did the calling out gets called a jerk too. Read More


Hacker News Parody Sums Up Everything We Love To Hate About Hacker News

(Photo: LinkedList)

The discussion board from the mind of Y Combinator founder Paul Graham is a place where some of the smartest people on the Internet congregate to flaunt just how smart they really are…in order to impress Paul Graham. An arbiter of influence in the science and tech sphere, it can send impressive amounts of traffic to even the most self-aggrandizing of Svbtle blogs, which is why so many people try to game the voting system. But it also provides an accepted way of ranking what’s important to certain players in the tech world. Read More

Quantify Me

Status Chart, the Résumé Porn for Self-Quantifiers, Officially Beta-Launches Today

(Photo: Status Chart)

A few weeks ago, a piece of porn for self-quantifiers shot up to the top of Hacker News. It was created by NYC’s very own Chris Kennedy–a Betabeat poachable–and was intended to remix and remaster the traditional boring résumé layout. The Hacker News crowd went so crazy for Mr. Kennedy’s invention that he promised to launch a version for others to use as well.

Today, just two weeks after he publicized his own Status Chart, Mr. Kennedy and backend dev Richard Owens have opened up the platform to other engineers and designers. Read More

Space the Final Frontier

What’s NASA Done For You Lately?


Maybe, despite a week of SPACE FEVER, you still aren’t sold on the idea of NASA. Maybe sexy mohawk-rocking scientists and sick panoramic images of an alien planet leave you cold. After all, it’s not like we’re sending real-life human astronauts anywhere anytime soon.

Well, oh ye of little faith, behold wtfNASA, a single-serve site devoted entirely to answering the question, “What the fuck has NASA done to make your life awesome?” Merely one example of many: inspired the design for your Speedo bathing suit. You’re welcome.

However, it appears the creator of this entertaining little site has neglected a very important contribution to American pop culture for which NASA is at least tangentially responsible: I Dream of Jeanie. We demand more Major Nelson.

Summer Fun

Use fontBomb to Blow Up Text on the Sites You Hate Most

Betabeat gets fontBombed.

It’s pretty rare that a “Show HN” post actually makes it to the top of the front page of Hacker News, as a lot of them are just half-baked startup ideas. Not so with fontBomb, a delightfully fun plugin that lets you blow up the text on your favorite (or least favorite) websites.

fontBomb is an HTML 5 plugin by Canadian programmer Philippe-Antoine Lehoux. As one commenter put it, “So awesome. Spent 10 min blowing the hell out of hn. Now instead of raging against trolls I can simply blow them up.” Read More