EDIT: This beats it with 99.4%:
" Rust Rust Rust Rust Rust "
edit: "YC YC YC YC YC YC" -> 100%
Ignoring the outlier, stories have at best a 1 in 3 chance of succeeding on HN. This means 2/3 of the interesting stories passing through HN are lost, and I could potentially triple my high quality reading material. It is amazing how much good content there is out there that I will never find.
Think of it like when you go to a restaurant, sometimes you choose a meal but you notice other people eating things that look more interesting which you are now too full to try. It's possible you'll never been able to eat at that restaurant again (eg if you're on vacation or it's the last night of the restaurant's operation (I've had quite a lot of favorite restaurants shut down, taking many fond gastronomic and social memories with them).
But really, this is a misunderstanding of opportunity cost. Those other meals may have been delicious, but so was yours; you would still only have been able to comfortably eat one meal, rather than the whole menu; and if you had had what your neighbor was eating, then you might have regretted not having your own meal.
Game theorists and economists explore regret minimization frameworks for decision-making, and that's valuable, but you have to consider both the extra work involved in applying the framework vs the real opportunity cost. A surfeit of choice (whether via advertising or in reality) can lead to overestimation of opportunity cost by tricking you into imagining you could enjoy all alternatives whereas in reality your selection was going to be limited anyway.
you may find it interesting to think about the psychology of collecting, and how it differs from usage. Collections can themselves have considerable value (scientific, cultural etc.) but some collections are the result of acquisition gone wrong and tipping into hoarding without any enjoyment of the collected object.
That's your mistake right there.
Did the author chose that title on purpose? :)
It's fun to try a title, and then add "Ask HN:" or "Show HN:" in front of it and see the probability change dramatically, or remove the (YC ...) from the extreme examples and see the prediction change.
Libertarian social policy is left wing and will typically get upvoted.
I'd say if you want a better than random chance to have positive upvotes lean Libertarian not left. Except when the Libertarian view is left in which case you are doing both.
Also, please don't bring politics into a non-political story.
One realization was that it was easier to predict if a title/keyword would NOT make it to the front page than if it would. That is, it's clearer what to avoid (startup, app, business, product, mobile, marketing, etc) than what to do.
Why wouldn't YC just use a human (or two) to bump/nudge posts they would like to climb or expose according to their agenda/internal policy?
It you monitor the hot page, there is a clear political bias, topical bias, as well as temporal peaks of movements/ranking indicating that would be the case - too complex for any ML currently to predict. Just my 2 cents.. keep it simple.
Show/Ask HN seem to do pretty well. I suppose I'd have expected that, given the community feel of the site. I'd say HN is a pretty good place to test a prototype or ask for guidance, and overall people do seem to constructively and thoughtfully try to help each other out.
Although, something seems odd when whitespace effects the score. It may have been a good idea to normalize the whitespace.
So: Consider the trailing space ...