Google Reader ads a bit of 'magic' to be more personal

Mon 26 October 2009 09:50, Bas van den Beld

Google Reader ads a bit of 'magic' to be more personal

For someone who is working on search and for whom news from around the world on specific topics is important RSS is a gift from heaven. It helps you get the important information really quickly. Google Reader is an RSS Reader which is growing in popularity daily. Because its online and easy.

Now Google has made looking at thousends of feeds even more easy with a couple of new features. Google Reader gets more personal and ads a little bit of 'magic' to their features.

Google Reader added two new options which helps you filter your feeds: the explore section and personalized ranking.

Explore section
Google Reader added a 'explore section' which gives you a couple of new ways to find new content from around the web. First there is "Popular items".  Top-rising images, videos and pages from around the web, so not just your own reader, are gathered in this area. The popular items are based on algorithms.

Meanwhile the 'recommendations" have been renamed recommended sources and moved to the explore section.


Personalized ranking; "sort by magic"
It is clear that Google is working on making their products more 'personal'. Their social search engine they introduced last week is an example of that, but so is the "Personalized ranking" or as they have called it the "sort by magic" option.

When you are clicking through your feeds you now have the option to not just sort them based on time, but also based on your personal behavior. Click "Sort by magic" under the "Feed settings" menu of your feed (or folder) to switch to personalized ranking.

This feature sorts the posts from the subscriptions you are looking at based on your interests. It takes into account your past reading behavior (including liking and starring), and global signals. "This process is completely automated and anonymous," Google stresses.

It can therefore be more useful to use the "like" button because more items like that will be on top of your pages to read.

All in all some nice features Google Reader added. Still its to bad they still haven't corrected the fact that you can't change foldernames.

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