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New Google Reader Feature Spotlights Chatty Cathys

Here are a few simple facts: some people talk more than others.  Also, some people are more interesting than others.  And a new Google Reader feature called "Friends trends" may help you determine how the folks you interact with online score in both of these categories.

Google Slows to a Crawl
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Update: Google has addressed the issue on the Official Blog. The company says:

Google Reader Gets More Social With Commenting

Google has added a lot of sharing-based features to Google Reader in recent memory, but it has now launched the ability to have conversations among those who are sharing items. Google acknowledges that this is a key element of sharing that the service has been lacking. I would have to agree.

Google Rolls Out Reader Improvements

Back in December, Google rolled out a redesign of Google Reader. Opinions were mixed (naturally), but I think it went pretty well overall. I know I’ve gotten used to it.

Embedded Video Woes and Google Reader
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Ever had trouble getting your embedded videos to show up in Google Reader? You’re not alone. Apparently your site has to be on a whitelist for it to work for you. For example, YouTube videos work, because YouTube is on the list. WordPress videos don’t, because Wordpress is not on the list.

Somebody complained about the problem in a Google Groups post, and was met with a response from a Google Reader Engineeer, Mihai Parparita:

Google Reader Interface Improved
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Google Reader has undergone some changes. The objective seems to have been to simplify things and give the whole thing a cleaner look and feel. While I’m sure the changes will still receive their share of critics, I for one am generally pleased with the update. Let’s take a look at the changes.

First off, if you can’t find something that is supposed to be there:  

Google Reader Gains Auto-Translation Abilities
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We English speakers are truly lucky that so much of the world is willing to accommodate us, learning enough of the language to at least give directions to the nearest bathroom.  But there’s an amazing amount of written content out there that isn’t in any given person’s native language, and to help with this issue, Google Reader has gained an auto-translate option.

Looking At More Trends in Google Reader

Google Reader has added some new data to the Trends department. For those who do not use Google Reader, or pay little attention to the Trends feature, it simply lays your reading habits out graphically so you can see when you are reading feeds the most, what you are reading the most, what you are reading the least, and so on.

Google Reader Getting Into Politics

Think of it as a tech-savvy, politically-oriented version of Oprah’s Book Club: Google Reader’s new Power Readers in Politics program is supposed to let anyone and everyone see what stories the main candidates and a number of journalists are viewing.

Why I Like FriendFeed

Over on FriendFeed, which I joined in March, I’ve been quite busy. I’ve moved a bunch of my blogging time and Google Reader time over to it. How does that time translate? Well, into a few things:

1. Comments. (Those are items I’ve commented on — 1,893 so far)
2. Likes. (Those are items I’ve liked — 3,003 so far)

A few minutes ago I just passed 3,000 “Likes.”

Gmail Gets 19 New Features, 6 Of Which Are Worthwhile

Some of you may have noticed that yesterday’s 6pm PDT launch of Gmail Labs came and went. The Gmail team promises that “We are currently in the process of rolling Labs out to English users” but I’ve yet to see it in my Gmail account.

Google Reader Advancing On Bloglines

No changes in ranking seem imminent – Google Reader was actually closer to catching Bloglines ten months ago than it is now.  Still, new Hitwise data confirms that these are the top two RSS readers, and in a 12-month comparison, Google’s service is gaining ground.

Google Salutes iPhone Users With New Reader Interface

Although the uninitiated might imagine that iPhone users only use their devices to listen to music and surf social networks, Google knows they can be quite literate, too.  And a new version of Reader plays up to this characteristic.

RSSmeme Puts Out API

Bloggers looking to brag on themselves (or "share their most popular stories," if you prefer) can now do it more easily thanks to Benjamin Golub.  Golub’s RSSmeme API will create a list that should work with all of the most popular blogging platforms.Benjamin Golub

Bloglines Users Abandon Ship
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When a company’s last press release was put out in June of 2005, it’s probably wise not to expect a quick response.  Still, users of RSS reader Bloglines are disappointed (and increasingly angry) following a long outage.

Google Ruining Christmas? Get a Grip

Since I’m full of the milk of human kindness after a wonderful Christmas, I’ve been trying to remain calm in the face of all the Google Reader hysteria about shared items and so on — but wiping out on some ice yesterday and landing on my ass has made it hard to stay serene (combined with gashing my hand playing Wii baseball), so I can’t help pointing out that much of the moaning about “privacy” is just ridiculous.

Google Reader Becomes Holiday Snitch
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Google’s orchestrating its own Facebook-Beacon-esque fiasco with its latest addition to Google Reader. Users are miffed (to put it lightly) that their shared feeds were suddenly broadcast to anybody they’d had a conversation with via Google Talk or Gmail chat.

The Interns are Taking Over the Googleplex!

The interns are taking over the Googleplex! Seriously, if you want to know why Google is so intent on reaching geniuses at an early age, you need look no further than today’s upgrades to Google Reader.

Google Reader Gives Up Its Numbers

Another tidbit of information about feeds on Google Reader emerged, showing how easy it is to find out how many Reader users have subscribed to a particular feed.

Google Reader Leaves Labs, Learns Languages

Google’s known for leaving “beta” tags hanging about for long periods of time, but today, the company pulled one of its products out of testing.  Behold: Google Reader is no longer in Labs, and it’s also gained support for a number of new languages.

Facebook Spawns New Industry, Digg Killer

This is the season for Facebook. It used to be that you couldn’t scan Web news without seeing a new Google report. Then it was MySpace, then Digg. Since Facebook opened up to the general public and to developers, it’s all anybody wants to talk about.