Google Reader (I know – too many posts on this!)

But I can’t help it – I expect more from Google than they are delivering.  This isn’t rocket science here – it’s a blog reader.  I subscribe, you deliver, I read.  It’s really pretty simple.

So it should work, especially since Google constantly reminds me that they have the best and brightest people in the world working there.

OK, best and brightest – fix these things:

1) I don’t need to see your cutesie “Oops, try later” message.  I just need it to work.

2) I don’t need to see your little Google Labs green beaker for minutes at a time when what I want to see is what’s new in my feeds.  Save the cute message and icons and just make things work.  If your servers are too busy to handle my request, breed more of them.

3) Please, please, if you are so smart – fix the issue with being logged into one Google account in one browser session screwing with my COMPLETELY DIFFERENT login for Google Reader.  Yes, I have a Google account for Analytics, GMAIL, etc and a different one for reading feeds. Being logged into both at the same time should work.  It really should!  It doesn’t.  Has anyone at Google tried this?

4) Please let me resize the panes in the reader.  This is a fairly easy thing to do.

5) Implement Search in my feeds.  I know you are working on it.  Work faster, please!

6) Let me set RSS search feeds for items outside of my reading list – scour blogs and websites for my predetermined search queries and feed it to me as if it was RSS.  Turn Google Reader into not just a reader, but a research tool.  You can do this!

7) Give me some control over the interface – fonts, font size, colors.  Something.  Please?


And Google, I do appreciate that Google Reader is “free”.  But I also know you reap huge benefits from it, so I don’t think I owe you anything for using it – or for demanding more from it.  Above are my “you should already be doing this” items… below are my “you should offer this” items.

1) Learn from me.  Suggest blogs to me based on what I read, what I flag, what I share.

2) Let me see my own metrics on what I read – what blogs I read most often, click through to most often, etc.

3) Build me an interest tree where you show me how my interests overlap with others.  Do it by subject, time frames, etc.  Build a Google Analytics into my blog reader.  Teach me what I may not know about my own reading habits.

4) Show me an aggregation of others who have similar interests, and if they allow it, point me to their blogs.


Google, I know you are thinking of a lot of cool things for Blog Readers – but if you don’t start delivering more than a basically functional interface for reading blogs then I’ll find something else.


  1. Chris – thanks. I did see the new metrics last night – very cool!


  2. Google reader lets you see metrics now, via the very new Trends feature. I wrote it up at GizBuzz but it’s easily available in the Google Reader interface as well.