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Google Santa Tracker for Web

This repository contains the code to Google Santa Tracker, an educational and entertaining tradition for the December holiday period. It is a companion to the Android app.

If you'd like to learn more about the engineering that goes into Santa Tracker, and how Santa Tracker works offline as a Progressive Web App, please check out Santa Tracker as a PWA.


In the 2016 version of Santa Tracker, some featured changes include-

  • Upgrade to use Polymer 1.7
  • Santa is a Progressive Web App supporting Add to Home Screen and offline through Service Worker
  • Further streamlined Chromecast support
  • Support the Web Share API where available
  • Added several new games, including Gift Matcher, Code a Snowflake and Wrap Battle


Santa Tracker supports Chrome, Firefox, and Edge; it also supports IE11, Safari 9+ and Chromium-based browsers (Opera, Samsung etc) at m44 or above.



You'll need npm, bower (use npm install -g bower if it's missing) and Java available on your system.


Clone project, then from within the repo:

$ npm install

For a list of commands, run gulp --help.

Build and run

Build and run with gulp serve. This will serve from the root directory and recompile JavaScript or CSS on watched changes. The first build might take some time (~10-20m), as it compiles every scene.

You can load scenes (even while locked) via their ID, e.g. at /#codeboogie. Alternatively, unlock houses (in dev) by calling santaApp.unlockAllHouses().

If you'd like to serve another way, then you can build all development dependencies with gulp.

Serve production build

First, build for prod and set a baseurl for static assets:

gulp dist --baseurl="http://localhost:9000/"

Serve prod:

serve -p 3000 dist_prod/

Separately, serve the static resources:

serve -p 9000 --cors dist_static/

Open http://localhost:3000/.


Use gulp dist --pretty to build. This performs additional steps, such as vulcanizing code and internationalization. Serve from ./dist_pretty.

Portal Docker deployment

  • Checkout / update any dependent repos
  • Build the image: docker build -t santa .
  • Create the container: docker create --restart always -p 8080:8080 --name santa santa
  • Run the container: docker start -d santa
  • Verify that the container is running: docker ps
  • Verify that the container is listening: curl -I http://lg-head:8080

To rebuild, run docker rm -f santa and start over from building the image.


Santa Tracker is comprised shared code along with many individual scenes: e.g., village, tracker etc.

Relevant Paths

Scenes are referenced in a few locations-

  • scenes.js: The definition for each scene is contained here. If an entryPoint is specified, then the scene is compiled with the Closure Compiler. This is also used as the reference for the HTML fanout, creating a HTML file per scene, per language.
  • images/og: The OG image (for sharing) in the form images/og/sceneName.png, and have a resolution of 1333x1000.
  • images/scenes: Each scene should have two images, the centered and resized version of the OG image-
    1. a 950x564 2x image: images/scenes/sceneName_2x.png
    2. a 475x282 1x image: images/scenes/sceneName.png
  • elements/santa-strings.html: Due to inconsistent scene i18n message IDs, each scene needs to have its name declared here for dynamic string loading at runtime.

There are two optional locations-

  • scenes/dorf/sass/_houses.scss: If the scene is also a house that lives in the village.
  • scenes/press/js/models.js: To be included in the Press and Educators scenes.


All image and audio files (including *.png, *.jpg, *.svg, *.mp3, *.wav and *.ogg) are licensed under the CC-BY-NC license. All other files are licensed under the Apache 2 license. See the LICENSE file for details.

Copyright 2015 Google Inc. All rights reserved.

Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License");
you may not use this file except in compliance with the License.
You may obtain a copy of the License at

Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software
distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS,
See the License for the specific language governing permissions and
limitations under the License.
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