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so…Google, good RSS reader, but…

Ok, Google, this is for you, just a friendly tip from someone who knows absolutely nothing. I really like my Google reader, it’s easy to use, easy to keep related feeds together, and it goes where I want it too. All the good stuff I’d like from a RSS reader.

But Sadly it’s it’s missing some very important features. And without these features I’m always going to be thinking about other, sexier, but slightly less mobile readers. Lets just list these, and then I’ll go ahead and explain why these are problems and potential ways to fix them:

  1. It doesn’t show flash embeds
  2. No reorganizing of data
  3. Search
  4. Ordering

Not a very long list, but some of these can be deal breakers when it comes to picking a reader. Lets go into some details shall we?

So flash embeds are pretty popular these days, hell you just bought youTube even though you already have Google Video. A good number of the feeds I subscribe to have pretty little videos hosted by one of your two services on them. But to see these video’s I have to leave your reader and go to some other site. If I wanted to go to the other site I would have gone strait to the other site, but no, I like having everything in one place…but it’s not everything is it? Now I understand, you don’t want to allow random things to be run on your site, that can be risky. So you wrote your nice code to remove embeds, it all works great. Now if you have that code, couldn’t you add a test before the removal to see if the code runs something from a trusted site, in their format and just let that slide by? Just a sudgestion.

Now I’m a relatively organized person, and I like to read thins in chronological order..but I can’t do that with your reader can I? Nope, I have to read things in the order that they appear in it’s feed…and what order you noticed it in. So things in the same category end up as a large jumble of interrelated posts in some order only a mathematician can understand. I know it would probably take a lot of processing to sort all that, but if you’re going to keep all this stuff saved anyway couldn’t you just keep it in chronological order…or in some manner that makes it easy to sort? Now I have no idea how you have that crazy app set up, but something is bound to be do-able.
Now when I think search, I think of you, and and I think of you I think search, so why is it that I can’t search my feeds for stories that I read and want to read again? Yesterday I was looking for an article that I read a while ago and tried to look for it in my reader…but that was taking too long, so I just searched for it, after a bit of query refinement and a page or two I found the exact article I wanted (don’t worry the rest of the articles were relevant, just not the one I wanted). Is all that really necessary?

And last but not least, ordering, Right now all feeds are kept in alpebetical order, first by catagory then by the feeds name. But what if I want to reorder that so feeds I want to read first are higher on the list, I can’t do that. I should be able to, I can move almost everything else in pretty much every other Google app, but not this one nothing in this one app.

Now most of these things are not huge problems, really if this app was made by anyone else I’d be happy with it. But I just expect so much from you, I just want you to live up to the high expectations you have set for yourself. Maybe you’re already working on these things and I’m preaching to the converted. But just in case you’re not, this is my reminder that you should be.

Tomasz Kolodziejczyk on October 31st, 2006 | Filed under Tech | 2 Comments »

2 Responses to “so…Google, good RSS reader, but…”

  1. Corvillus Says:

    Well, I knew about the flash embeds and the ordering (one of my favorite things about Liferea is that I can set it to order by time for all posts instead of having to go through posts grouped by feed), but it doesn’t have search? That just seems downright strange coming from Google. If there’s one thing you’d expect the king of search to do well in every product they release (regardless of whether or not it’s a useful feature for the product) is search. That search isn’t even in it is just not at all like Google.

  2. Tomblog » I Ask and I Receive Says:

    […] little while ago I wrote an open letter list of complaints about Google reader. Well they obviously read this blog because today one of the changes I asked […]