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#Beams v0.2.5 (Beta)

###An operating system for news

Beams is an open full-stack framework for building media websites, including news sites, blogs, video apps, et cetera.

It includes the following features:

  • Secure server using Nginx and Node.js. A simple, fast server script to get your project up and running quickly using HTTPS. A basic website file structure is also included for serving static pages of content.

  • Ultraresponsive layout. Layout is based on a 20-column, 4,000-pixel grid. This allows elegant resizing of elements on any size screen, from a large TV down to a smartphone. Video players are also responsive, including support for embedded players for YouTube, Vimeo, and self-hosted HTML5 video.

  • Default typefaces from Google Fonts. We use Merriweather for headlines and Open Sans for pretty much everything else. (Of course, implementers should feel free to change these to something else if your project requires.)

  • jQuery 2.1.4. The framework's beams-client.min.js file includes a full, minified copy of this popular JavaScript library so your project can quickly call functions from it.


To implement Beams, you'll need a computer to use as a server that has the following installed:

  • A valid SSL certificate. You'll have to buy one of these from a certificate authority like Comodo, DigiCert, etc. Be sure to follow the issuer's install instructions carefully.

  • Nginx v1.7.11 or later. This part of the stack handles HTTPS verification and, if your project calls for it, enhancfed load balancing to handle heavy traffic.

  • Node.js 0.10.38 or later. Popular server-side JavaScript platform that uses Google's V8 engine.

  • npm 1.4.28 or later. The node package manager. Helps add modules that enhance functionality of the stock version of Node.js.

  • Express 4.12.3 or later. Add-on Node.js module for building full-featured Web apps.

  • Forever 0.14.1 or later. Add-on Node.js module that keeps the server running persistently.

  • MongoDB v3.0.1 or later. A document-oriented NoSQL database.

  • Mongoskin v1.4.13 or later. Node.js plugin/driver to aid integration with MongoDB.

For full installation and usage instructions, see the "Getting Started" guide the Beams community maintains on GitHub at

Roscoe Labs is the lead developer of Beams, which is free to use under MIT License.

Of course, we also encourage and welcome contributions and feedback from anyone interested in making Beams better. There are many ways for technical and non-technical contributors alike to participate, including our company GitHub page at and the Beams Working Group listserv at


Peter McKay
Co-Founder/Chief Product Officer
Roscoe Labs
Twitter: @peteramckay