Anatomy Of A Hacker-News Story

Hello, people I identify with (implicitly calling out the other), I have a theory you might identify with, since I think it describes you and your work and I identify with it. We will be ignoring counter-factuals today to make the process easier. Also, this post contains no actual data or research. It’s merely the regurgitated musings of someone with very little experience in the topic at hand, armed with infinite amounts of self-congratulatory rightness. Because you and I already share attitudes and values, and because we’ve all read the same Paul Graham articles, this won’t be much of a debate.

Here’s my great theory:

True statement, exaggerated

Blah blah blah, setup, context, blah blah.

  • Basic example: drawing dubious (if implicit) causal connection. Gotcha!
  • Further example: this one is more tenuous, but I think you’ll stick with it ’cause you already swallowed the first one. Besides, you already agree with me.
  • Left-field example: Phoning it in. Also, I’m on a horse.

TODO(authorshandle): fill in with causal-sounding, non-research-backed explanations about why what I’m selling is true and not in any way exaggerated. If anything, it’s understated.


Disclaimer: this could be entirely wrong, so if it is (and we all know the odds), you read this disclaimer.

My startup is founded entirely around the principles I’ve outlined here, which is why we’re going to not only bring peace to the world, but get rich doing it. If you’re an investor, you’d be a sucker not to put your money with us. Not an investor? Please go click on the obviously placed link earlier in the paragraph and witness our closed beta signup form.

Self-aggrandizing “thanks” for help writing this article, preferably including name-drops of folks i think you’ve heard of, but not so many that it’s obvious.


  1. Karl G
    Posted November 6, 2010 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

    Empty statement in support of your points. You’re so smart!

  2. Posted November 7, 2010 at 5:11 am | Permalink

    The voice of reason stated calmly and accurately, possibly in the form of a question. (To be shouted down by the next 35 to 50 comments…)

  3. Posted November 7, 2010 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    Snide comment about “transmedia”.

  4. Andrae Muys
    Posted November 9, 2010 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

    A random “First Post”, inevitably arriving at position 4-5, thereby providing the opportunity for various self congratulating comics to further degrade the S/N.

  5. Ben
    Posted November 9, 2010 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

    Hahaha. Hacker news has 5% good tech coverage and 95% 20 year old guys who need to get laid and jacking off while refreshing techcrunch. ;D

  6. Danny O Brien
    Posted November 9, 2010 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

    I absolutely agree with this, Alex. I too sincerely believe in my own clumsy misrepresentation of your original point. That’s why Languishing Startup is the only company I know currently pursuing this blindingly obvious strategy in the marketplace.

    Here’s a link to our placeholder website only with a typo so you can’t click on it: htp://

    Please pay attention to me!

  7. Posted November 9, 2010 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

    Additional supportive comment posted with for the sole reason of garnering a link-back.

  8. Posted December 22, 2010 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

    Although I agree with your argument (it’s obvious and I’ve said the same before), the fact that you provide no client API for Scala developers means you’re doomed to failure.