{hacker,reddit}-top: Monitoring at your pleasure

Two-for-one today, and you can use whichever one you prefer: hacker-top and reddit-top, both of which do basically the same thing.

2013-03-20-solo-2150-hacker_top 2013-03-20-solo-2150-reddit_top

Scour a news aggregator site and dump the results into a text-only form.

Now before you go all berzerk and wonder what practical use that is — particularly when one or both of those sites tends to be collections of pictures of cats — there is a rationale for this sort of tool.

And rather than belabor the point like I did years ago, I’ll just say that some people prefer to strip away the distractions (and yes, pictures of cats are distractions) and focus on actual information.

Regardless, both hacker-top and reddit-top work in almost identical fashion, skimming designated pages at regular intervals and cueing a browser when you want to take a closer look.

As they are both intended to mimic top (you do remember top, don’t you?) there are only a few practical options for them.

Pressing o opens your $BROWSER to that page — but only the topmost item in the list.

So you have to scroll up or down to get the link you want in the first line, then open it. Not ideal, but functional. Pressing m cycles through a few more details. Pressing u updates out of turn.

After that there are only a few flags for update intervals, and so forth.

So I suppose, in a much more broader sense, neither is a true feed reader, like newsbeuter or some others.

As a side note, I ran into a little scrum between both programs and elinks. Apparently there’s some scrollback buffer issue between the two.

Most of the text on the page disappears when elinks exits; scrolling back through the list brings some of them back to light, little by little.

I’ve checked my elinks settings, but I don’t see much about this, and the Internet is little help this time.

No fear, this is no giant tragedy. It does make for a slight inconvenience though.

4 thoughts on “{hacker,reddit}-top: Monitoring at your pleasure

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