Newt is a simple Mac OS X utility that notifies you about new questions, answers, comments and reputation changes. Now, everyone can become a Jon Skeet!


I enjoyed making this app very much and glad that many people found it useful as well. However, with other things taking over, I found I have little time to maintain it or for StackExchange in general. And now that the old SE API is shut down, it is effectively broken. There are, however, plenty of other worthy notification apps around: many more than there were three years ago when I started writing Newt.

I wish you worthy questions and thoughtful answers! And leave a message if you'd like to take over and maintain Newt.

Screenshot / Code Snippet

Notifications are dispalyed with Growl.

Customizable settings with support for new Stack Exchange sites.

The main interface is located in the status bar.


Newt is for people who want to follow their favourite Stack Exchange sites, but don't want to constantly click the refresh button. It'll notify you about questions on interesting topics, answers to your questions, comments for you and reputation changes.

It's also intended to be simple and intuitive, so even non-programmers can use it.


MIT License


  • Install Growl notifications manager if you don't already have it.
  • Download package, open it, copy Newt.app into the Applications folder and launch it.
  • Configure preferences through status bar icon.
  • (Optional) Configure notification settings in System Preferences/Other/Growl


  • Runs on Mac OS X 10.5 or later.


In the profile.



  • Written in Objective-C for Cocoa.
  • Suggestions, corrections, bug reports and code contributions are welcome. (In particular, application desperately misses good icons)
  • Code is accessible on GitHub.

New in version 2.1

  • Automatic Updates - Each time there's a new version, you'll be notified and update will be installed automatically.
  • Quiet Mode - Only comments and answers are delivered.
  • Better HTML support - No more " and ' in notifications.
  • Improved error reporting - Each time there's error (network connection, API limit, etc.), the status bar icon changes and its title is set to an error description.

New in version 2.2

  • Reputation tracker - You can check reputation just by clicking application icon. You'll be also notified about reputation changes on all sites. (This can be turned off in Growl settings.)

Future versions

Let me know what you'd like to see. Some ideas:

  • Go to Sleep Mode with the computer
  • More customizable settings
  • but but..and for the poor guys that are still running on Mac OS X 10.5.8? Commented Feb 9, 2011 at 12:03
  • 2
    @systempuntoout I'll work on that :) The problem is, I inadvertently used some 10.6 features, like Blocks, so porting it back now isn't as easy as changing build target. But I'll post an update in a few days. Commented Feb 9, 2011 at 12:09
  • @systempuntoout Here :) Tested on 10.5.2, plus there's a new functionality. Commented Feb 16, 2011 at 2:18
  • 2
    @Nikita very good job, I'm running it. Commented Feb 18, 2011 at 22:34
  • I can't install this app. It doesn't even run at all? Someone can help?
    – user5629
    Commented Mar 4, 2011 at 13:47
  • Can I run it under 10.6.6?
    – user5629
    Commented Mar 4, 2011 at 13:53
  • @Tassisto It doesn't have to be installed. Just install growl and copy it to apps folder. And yes, I run it on 10.6.6. If something fails, please tell the details. Commented Mar 4, 2011 at 20:59
  • you're right it doesn't install, I was waiting for that. But it sais that I can only login in an account with 200 points reputation, what's that?
    – user5629
    Commented Mar 5, 2011 at 9:58
  • @Tassisto Where does it say that? Also, I repeat, there's no installation. Commented Mar 5, 2011 at 10:06
  • I know, no installation! The first thing I do when it runs. I go to preferences, I check (under Site) StackOverflow. Then I need to paste the url of my profile. After these steps it shows me a little rectangle with this text: "You do not have any linked accounts with 200+ rep :("
    – user5629
    Commented Mar 5, 2011 at 10:50
  • the goal of this app is to follow what others commented/answered on your questions, right?
    – user5629
    Commented Mar 5, 2011 at 10:51
  • @Tassisto That's not an error, although I see how it's confusing. That's your Stack Exchange flair. Normally it shows user's picture and SO profiles with above 200 rep, but you seem to have neither. I'll think what can be done about it in the next versions, but be assured that everything runs. Commented Mar 5, 2011 at 12:26
  • @Tassisto One of them. Another goal is to be notified when people post questions on interesting topics. Commented Mar 5, 2011 at 12:28
  • at the moment I'm only interested on my questions :p. at this moment I don't want to see random posts, can I configure newt to allow only posts on my questions?
    – user5629
    Commented Mar 7, 2011 at 8:30
  • 2
    I forked a version that supports Notification Center in Mountain Lion: github.com/DrummerB/newt
    – DrummerB
    Commented Aug 14, 2012 at 17:38

10 Answers 10


thanks for the app. I do however, feel that it overloads me for two reasons:

  • it shows me all new questions for a site. Would be much better if I could select the tags for which I want to see new questions;
  • it flashes too quickly, and I can't look at all notifications. If we could configure the display time, would be awesome, or the display time could depend on the number of notifications at the same time.


  • 1) You can choose the tags you'd like to be notified about: see the second screenshot in the post. Commented Jun 28, 2011 at 2:32
  • 2) Display time can be configured in growl: System Preferences -> Growl -> Display Options -> notification type (e.g. Bubbles) -> duration Commented Jun 28, 2011 at 2:35
  • 2) Another trick: if you hover your mouse over notification, it won't disappear until you move the mouse away. Commented Jun 28, 2011 at 2:37
  • It would also be nice if I could see questions by particular authors only. (For example, I don't spend much time on the cooking site, but my wife does; I always enjoy reading her questions.) Commented Jul 5, 2011 at 3:22

Have been using this for several days now.

Every so often I'll get a bunch of reputation notifications--"a bunch" as in one for every site the app is monitoring. Am I correct in thinking that this is because there's been a network-wide recalc, or is there some other reason for this?

Edit: This is happening several times a day. Obviously not due to a recalc!

Also, it'd be nice if there were some way of dismissing the windows with a keyboard shortcut. (Either all of them or one-by-one.) Or, perhaps you could simply add a "dismiss all" menu item?

  • Have log since uninstalled this from my Mac due to this issue. (The dozens-of-notifications-at-once one.) Commented Oct 30, 2011 at 22:52

First thank you for the app.

I'm not getting notified about any new question although I specified which tags I'm interested in.
The App only notifies me about reputation.

I'm running OS X 10.6.8

  • Can you give post site and list of tags here? Commented Aug 13, 2011 at 7:22
  • SO: clojure clojurescript , Programmers: clojure ios java lisp career scala programming-languages
    – Chiron
    Commented Aug 14, 2011 at 1:09

I will join others in saying that this is a great application. I do have a few suggestions, though.

  1. Make it clearer for which sites reputation is shown. As far as I can tell, Newt only displays reputation for one's top three sites, but there may be some other heuristics at work, as well.
  2. Include a link to the selected user's network profile.
  3. Include activity for questions marked as favorites.

Would it be possible to get badge notifications added? Checking for them is the only reason I still need to visit my global activity tab.


I've just installed this, but its being strange. Even if I turn off notifications for new questions I still get notifications (which usualy take up half my screen or so).

Stopping newt and restarting it causes the notification to be re-enabled (which doesn't matter... because it doesn't seem to adhere to the growl notifications settings).


This doesn't work as expected for me:

  1. I only see reputation for my top three sites in the app menu, not the ones I've selected in preferences. Is there a way to control what's displayed there?
  2. There seems to be no way to track responses (answers and comments addressed) to a particular user. Currently it seems to track all new questions (which is far to many).

Perhaps these are better phrased as feature requests:

  1. Ability to control what reputation is displayed in the app menu. Including specifying particular sites, or showing the n most recently changed reputations (current value & change).
  2. Ability to limit answer and comment notifications to a specific user.
  3. More information (e.g. summaries of recent events of interest) displayed in the app menu (so that it is not necessary to catch them in Growl).

First of all, I rely heavily on Newt.

My one nitpick is that it shows reputation changes for SE sites twice; once for the regular site, and once for the accompanying meta site. Meta sites don't have their own reputation, instead the main site reputation is synchronized every hour and voting on meta sites doesn't lead to reputation gain or loss. Thus, if you gained reputation on the main site, within an hour Newt notifies you of the same reputation changes for the meta site.

Only for stackoverflow.com and meta.stackoverflow are rep changes shown only once, which is to be expected; the SO / MSO relation is special and reputation on MSO is counted and separate.

Can reputation for all meta sites (except MSO) be ignored in Newt please?


Thank you very much for this nice application. I really like the way it handles all the notifications and how you can configure them... I have one feature idea/suggestions and one issue:

Idea: I would love to see a "Silent Buffer" (not sure if this is possible to implement). Sometimes one needs to "sleep" newt (because is going to a meeting, giving a presentation, wants no notifications "for a while", etc.). This "silent buffer" would allow to "buffer" all the "relevant questions" take were asked while in that state, i.e., when we would come back we would get (probably this needs to be limited to a certain max number - last 5/10) list of questions asked in the mean time. I can see some issues, e.g.: the growl notifications would need to be "sticky" otherwise we would simply not read all of them...

Issue: I use Mac OS Lion, and after I put the computer to sleep and restarting it, newt stays in a "No internet connection mode", although I do have Internet... I have to change to some status (e.g.: to "silent mode" then back to "full mode") to get it working.


Have been using Newt for almost a month, it is great, and it mostly does my job, there are however a few features that I miss:

  1. Ignored tags

    Questions containing the ignored tags are not displayed.

    Update 6/1/2013: I was frustrated with dozens of Android questions (which I am not interested in) because they had Java tag (which I am interested in), I have implemented this feature myself in my Newt fork on github.

  2. Favorites tags

    Questions containing the favorites tags are displayed longer.

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