HN Gopher Feed (2017-09-26) - page 1 of 10
115 points by mrzoolhttp://thin.npr.org
ComputerGuru - 36 minutes ago
My first, knee-jerk reaction was ?God, that loaded fast!? even
though I already knew going in what to expect.Text only doesn?t
have to be _ugly_ though. Once you embrace minimalism, you realize
that aesthetics are primarily a concept of white space and
typography. And neither one of those interferes with text only,
thank god.While modern CSS has been inching towards becoming Turing
complete (is it already now? I think so long as adding html
elements via :before/:after remains disallowed we aren?t there
yet?), CSS? biggest saving grace is that it was a declarative and
Turing incomplete.Of course when the web first started, the idea
was that it would serve stylable but unsettled content _and then
the user would style it as they liked_ so they could enjoy a
consistent and customized experience no matter what they were
browsing. I don?t know many people that still customize their
Browser default style sheets (can you even do that in Edge, I
wonder?).I personally don?t because I appreciate the value in
judging people (and the content they produce) by how they?ve styled
it (or haven?t, which can oftentimes be preferable).
agumonkey - 29 minutes ago
I'm really loving the html3/4 default typo. There are people
advocating for "better" typography in raw text documents, but
even if it's quite prettier, it's not the point.
anonfunction - 28 minutes ago
There is no css being loaded on http://thin.npr.org, just the
default browser styling for html elements.
ComputerGuru - 20 minutes ago
Oh I know. I'm lamenting the fact that default browser sheets
suck (any sane developer/designer is going to import a CSS
reset as the first step, so there's no reason to make the
default look so ugly).Of course, depending on the reasons
behind the existence of thin.npr.org in the first place, NPR
could add something really simple that doesn't add more than a
few bytes and make it look several orders of magnitude more
davesque - 6 minutes ago
I like that it's just user agent styling. I think that was
what they were going for. Also, you can change the user
agent stylesheet if you want.
vlunkr - 27 minutes ago
Totally agree. It doesn't have to be a binary choice between 0
styles and JS and the full blown site. You can accomplish lots
with a few hundred lines of CSS without really affecting load
astronautjones - 27 minutes ago
Hope this trend catches on.
crispyambulance - 19 minutes ago
It won't.It is ugly and harsh on the eyes. There's nothing wrong
with a minimal no-frills aesthetic, but that doesn't have to mean
literally ripping _all_ styling out.Hundreds of years of
typography, typesetting... and what do some people claim to want?
Naked html, default styling like a friggin' typewriter! Ugh!
CaptSpify - 6 minutes ago
I'll disagree with you. We should be putting our own styling on
once it hits our computers. There's no reason that we couldn't
design systems so that the client can style it to their
preference.Then you get the best of both worlds!
mikebenfield - 5 minutes ago
Why not just have a more pleasing default style? Why does
everyone who wants to send you information over the web have to
worry about typography and typesetting, when you could just
have something reasonable by default?
dpflan - 51 minutes ago
There was recently a post about text-only CNN
too.https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15210022If there are more
text-only versions of sites, it seems like it may be cool to add a
meta-view service in the style of HN or reddit. Is there an extant
service that would easily allow this?
Spivak - 30 minutes ago
Yeah, if only there was really simple way to subscribe to many
different feeds of syndicated text content.
agumonkey - 28 minutes ago
still too soon
akira2501 - 49 minutes ago
> If there are more text-only versions of sitesI might have a
reason to install lynx again.
ComputerGuru - 34 minutes ago
Ugh. I literally just spent several hours adding a workaround
to fish shell that addresses a bug in Lynx that?s been around
forever that randomly makes html content unreadable . And
that was only possible after a lot of research and digging!How
hard do you have to try to screw up the rendering of text only
HTML?It turns out that lynx applies styles (foreground color +
optional background color + optional underline) to rendered
documents (so you can tell where a link is, mainly) by
calculating the hash of the (HTML element name, class) tuple of
each DOM member (probably supporting just one class per
element). It turns out that the insanely popular `
` element has a hash that collides with
that of `em.a` (a link in emphasized text) which styles the
link to become readable in the default styling applied to
`em`... but due to that collision, `
` elements, not having the default
styling applied to them, become entirely unreadably (black on
dark blue).Lynx uses a very primitive hashing function (with a
very small address space), and then (out of negligence or in
the name of performance? Who knows!) doesn't check if the the
(element, class) tuple (not its hash, but the actual tuple)
matches that defined in the stylesheet...To make matters worse,
doxygen (arguably the most popular open source documentation
generation software) generates the HTML versions of its output
with all the content in a div assigned a class called.... yup,
you guessed it, `contents`. And that's where fish and my
workaround came in :): https://github.com/fish-shell/fish-
bdreadz - 51 minutes ago
I want more sites to do this. Would be so wonderful.
ryandrake - 30 minutes ago
Totally agree. I hope this starts a trend where the first T in
HTTP comes back to prominence.
ashark - 24 minutes ago
I'd settle for an restricted subset of HTML only as a light
standard. Tables and bold and h-tags and stuff are fine, it's CSS
basically no benefit. Reserve boxes for images but click/tap to
fetch and show. Make always-show an option I guess. Videos are
well-marked links that open in some other program. Let the user
set some colors and sizes for basic text elements and call it a
day. 99% of the web would be better for the user in such a
restricted format and we could stop spending so much money
peacocking up plain ol' websites.
rsync - 13 minutes ago
I wish there was a easy-to-find-downloads-of-audio NPR ...But
unfortunately, like almost all media outlets, finding an actual
link that points to an actual mp3 file is very time consuming and
difficult.Here's an example ...Let's say you want to download an
episode of 1-A to listen to on an airplane. The front page of the
website has "listen" links and also a "subscribe to the
"podcast"" link. But I don't want to "listen" and I don't want to
subscribe to anything and I don't use itunes (or anything like
itunes).So you click the link to the actual episode of the show
but once again ... cute little "listen" link ... cute little
"discuss" link ... but no way to download a file.So now it's
getting frustrating ... but as a last ditch effort, you turn off
your brain and just type in "download 1-a episode" into google and
come up with this link which takes you to a different website
(npr.org) which has a list of 1-a episodes (and our friend the
"listen" button) but also has a cute little "..." button that
expands into choices, one of which is "download".
agumonkey - 12 minutes ago
Oh it's not even new, see
was included in this list
http://www.lesswaiting.com/info118.htmlThat might be outdated since
the comment is 5 years old.
fairpx - 44 minutes ago
These text only approaches are fantastic. In fact, I recently
designed the UI for a conceptual Text-only Techcrunch.Feel free to
download the files and build something with
ruok0101 - 9 minutes ago
"online version of our monotone news reporting". j/k. I love it.
jaytaylor - 40 minutes ago
After seeing the CNN one and now this, it makes me want to create a
generalized service to turn any site into TXT format with the
html2text  golang package.Will submit to Show HN if I get enough
round toits ;) https://github.com/jaytaylor/html2text
astronautjones - 27 minutes ago
stevewilhelm - 39 minutes ago
It would be really cool if websites published their frequently
changing information in some kind of text based stream or feed.
Avshalom - 36 minutes ago
Or if there was some way to push those updates. 
Spivak - 32 minutes ago
Yeah, they could publish syndicated content but it would have to
be really simple for non-technical users.I mean the real barriers
to entry are that browsers don't display feeds nicely, you need
an additional client or service.
niftich - 17 minutes ago
In fairness NPR does in fact have RSS 2.0 feeds; they're
separated by section  -- for example, one for US News .
There's an 'assorted' feed  that doesn't exactly mirror the
homepage but shares a similar purpose.The feeds only embed a line
or two from the article, and link to the regular (i.e. non-lite)
site. Nonetheless, they exist; artifacts of a patchwork of
optimistic thinking about the future of the web that have largely
fallen out of the collective popular consciousness. https://he
loxias - 5 minutes ago
This looks glorious in w3m. Thank you NPR!