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around google reader

@ 09:22 PM (109 months, 15 days ago)
Update 2006-11-13: Google reader just got better.

Overall not a bad interface at all. I won't insist on the things google got right; which are numerous indeed. However some things Google reader could improve at:
  • opt-out the too-well-known corporation logo and header; focus on navigation and post texts mainly. This is something goog still needs to figure out: the logo is to be placed on get-in pages (search results, main pages etc); once somebody is in there the corporate identity thing becomes superflue; people are in there to read stuff; and there are other better ways than clicking on the big logo to get home.
  • auto sorting simply doesn't work. Either combine display criterias via a custom view where relevance criterias are left to the user; or think of a better magical formula.
  • cut away the long slow-to-scroll list on the left by grouping it by blogs and unread posts count. Some people are slow post-by-post readers, other like to have always an overview of blogs with unread posts.
  • ctrl+resize doesn't work in Firefox. Actually the page seems to comply to font resizing, but then all layout is broken
  • no more links opening in new windows, please!
  • the title of the post is cut away in the left box; which in case of long posts looks quite weird.

Somehow they are playing around the right release recipe; which appears to be to first dump out a useful simple tool; and schedule critical updates, enough to raise again people's attention every once in a while; like the recent sharing thingy.

short rambling now: Google news has the incredible niche potential of stepping into the recommandation engine gold mine via articles text analysis versus click tracking and user pattern analysis. There's a beautiful picture behind it with maps of users versus maps of news articles; which are building together the tomorrow's newspaper. That's far more than shinny-bubbled ajax interfaces; something that people may call personalised newspapers; and there's a full growth potential there. A simple math says that google search lead to news; therefore blogsearch will lead to a technorati-like blog news website; where similar things are to go on .. you get the picture.