- Passwords are still just as broken now as they were then.
- Functional programming is still widely discussed, though the focus is more on Lisp than Clojure/Haskell/etc.
- Fourth post is the usual, somewhat sensationalist, this commonly-accepted thing is bad! sort of headline that makes the rounds here every so often.
- This post on syntax highlighting  reminds me of another recent one .
- 37signals is there with another sage-like statement on the business.
- Article on women in tech in slot #13.
- Woah, is that Clojure there in #14? And on SourceForge, even. It's come a long way since then.
- Fears about government invasion of privacy abound.
- Hey, MySpace! That spam "epidemic" never quite subsided, it seems.
- Interesting mathematical discussion in slot #24. When reading the headline, I almost expected to read "stackoverflow.com" in the domain slot. Goes to show how popular that sort of post is here nowadays.
As someone who wasn't around back then, it's interesting to look back on this now and see what the site I love now was like five years ago.
As a simple indicator, there are only two articles about functional programming on the front page, and they're both fairly shallow, general and not current. They're also related: same author and similar subjects.
I'm sure it's just a function (heh) of HN's growing userbase and more diverse audience. Still, I really would like more functional programming stuff. I even vote on interesting FP articles on new, but it often isn't enough, especially because the new page moves fairly quickly and I don't go there that often.
But yeah, ignoring the relative proportions of subjects, the front page actually seems fairly similar to the current one.
By the way, Reader has many of the same awesome keyboard shortcuts as Gmail - you can use j and k to go up and down in the list, 1/2/3 to switch views, v to open the link, etc. (Try hitting ?)
I follow http://www.reddit.com/r/haskell/ , which has much more meaty FP topics than hit HN these days. For example, "Files are to Mounts as Abstract Data Types are to Dependency Injection" and "Video:Duncan Coutts on Cloud Haskell" are two I'm looking forward to digging into.
I've been thinking about how those who up-vote stories on HN very carefully have an enormous wealth of interesting content in the "saved stories" section their profiles. It's such a shame that this is value is locked away: Somebody could generate pages and pages of amazingly interesting content based on other people who upvote similar to themselves.
I'm currently working on a related startup that we actually applied to YC W13 with, so we'll see what happens next. The current version of FavoritePosts will require a couple of weeks before I can launch it as an MVP.
But thanks guys for the encouragement! I'll start dusting off the codebase to see exactly where I'm at.
It's been five years since the launch of Heroku?
Well, you learn something new every day.
Wow, talk about points inflation!
hhm was my previous username, but I lost its password now. Probably after switching accounts some years ago, after becoming a little paranoid about internet identity (I even sent a mail asking pg to remove that account... he was smarter than me and said he wouldn't do that; thanks pg). I now realize I shouldn't care so much about that really.
By that time, I realized that it might be easy to get into the leaderboard just by posting quality links of stuff I was interested into. I put some effort into that by some time and I reached (I think) the 10th place. I stored a screenshot about that, named something like "and-what-was-that-for.jpg" that I can't find right now. But I remember noticing a couple things about that experience:
- how empty it was after I achieved that random objective... it was just some score, and it didn't serve any useful purpose, so once I achieved it I couldn't feel too happy about it
and the most interesting bit:
- it was very easy to get into, say, the 20th or 15th spot. But then raising into the 10th spot was much harder. I understood that people between 15 - 200 weren't trying to reach that kind of score, or they weren't trying too hard. People don't compete too much. Then when approximating the 10th spot, I found that it was getting increasingly harder. I'm sure somebody trying to get into the 1st or 2nd spot would have to spend an amazing amount of work into that.
It was just a game I played for some short span of time, then I quit. Now I miss that account a little bit :)
A few months ago I decided to focus on high quality comments after feeling like I was contributing to the HN noise a bit too much.
As a proxy for that, I tracked my average comment score, trying to get it above 10.
Today it's 14.93, which is quite high - only 4 of the top 100 are higher.
I think my comment quality has risen substantially, but I also subconsciously started making decisions based on score - not posting on topics that were sliding down the front page, or where there were already hundreds of comments but I did have something to say.
In short, the gamification overtook the original goal, and the tail was wagging the dog.
I've now started using a much simpler method - taking a deep breath before hitting reply, and trashing the comment if I don't think I'm adding anything to the conversation. I like this way more.
The first couple of times I was banned it hurt me maybe more than one would expect. I took it personally, I thought about it deeply, I really took it as a wake-up call. I thought long and hard about what was wrong with my personality that the (IMO) best community on the web would actively act to expel me.
One of my later accounts, I acted like you're describing. I tried hard to stay "on message" and to write the kind of things I theorised HN would want to hear.
I think I snapped at one point and yelled at someone. That account is, of course, now hellbanned along with all the rest. I don't even remember the username. By the way, my first account here was either on the leaderboard or maybe a few points off. It was a long time ago.
These days I am more zen-like about the whole thing. I mostly write what I want. I do try not to be abusive - my character is flawed enough that sometimes that's what comes naturally. If I get banned, well, that's life. But I do what you say, taking a second to think about whether my comment adds something - if it doesn't, I just delete it and move on. I think that's perhaps a sign of maturity, when you're willing to throw away your own words (that you might have spent half an hour perfecting) because you recognise they're probably more destructive than constructive to the community you respect.
Of course there could be numerous curatorial reasons, but that first one would seem to be a deal-breaker regardless.
Next to Lucille Packard Children's Hospital, an impressive testimony of how technology affects the lives of people in Bay Area beyond technology per se.
So much better than no comments:
2017. I would hope it will be some discussion of quantum computers. It's a topic that never ceases to amaze me.
The homepage looks just as it looked 5 years ago. That is something worth applauding. It just proves quality and simplicity always win in the longterm.
And here I was operating under the illusion that we were innovating...
Oh well, time to go and make a new photo uploading site.
You posted the wrong link.