Awesome Open Source
Awesome Open Source


A simply readable Hacker News web app.


This project started as one of my silly mini-projects. I create this initially to try out iOS 5+ Mobile Safari's new -webkit-overflow-scrolling: touch CSS support. I need some sort of content for scrolling, so why not Hacker News' stories? I'm also trying something called Fake it 'til you make it which I make the web app looks (and feels) like a native mobile app. In this case, like a native iOS app. If the web app is loaded on non-iOS devices, it'll switch to the 'web' theme which is like a generic theme for other browsers and platforms.

Read my two-part blog post on how I built this web app:

Also read my introductory post, Introducing HackerWeb.

Technical stuff

This web app works best on iOS 5+ Mobile Safari (iOS theme) and other modern browsers (web theme). It uses these wonderful scripts:

  • Hogan.js - logic-less templating
  • Amplify.Store - client-side storage
  • ruto.js - location.hash router
  • iOS
  • Web
    • ibento.js - simple event delegation
    • classList.js - shim for element.classList
  • Vanilla JavaScript - everything else

Also uses the unofficial Hacker News API.

Development stuff


git clone git://
cd hackerweb/
npm install

Grunt tasks

  • grunt templates - Compile templates in templates/* to generate assets/js/templates.js

  • grunt uglify - Concat and minify JavaScript files in assets/js/* to generate js/*

  • grunt watch - Watch the templates and scripts, run templates and uglify tasks when they're changed

  • grunt embedImage - Embed images into CSS files. This will parse CSS files in assets/css/* and change this (any lines with url()):

     background-image: url(PATH); /* embedImages:url(PATH) */

    ... into this:

     background-image: url(data:DATAURI); /* embedImages:url(PATH) */
  • grunt connect - Run a local dev server. Arguments:

    • --port=XX - specify a custom port number
  • grunt server - Run both watch and connect tasks at the same time

Contributing and Feedback

Feel free to fork, file some issues or tweet your feedback to me.

Do check out these awesome contributions as well:



Other similar apps

This is the not the first third-party app for Hacker News. Others have tried doing the same thing, despite some slight differences. I've compiled a list of apps here.

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