The horror

…as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced…


Google Reader & Instapaper

If you use Google Reader and Instapaper, then you want to make sure you pay attention to this post here. Using some of the new features introduced over at Greader this week, it permits you to add articles to your Instapaper queue straight from inside your feed reader. It’s very slick.

The only shortcomings I see at the moment are the blank 201 result page and the lack of fine tuning what URL gets sent over. I like to choose a print view before adding an item to Instapaper, but perhaps saving a few clicks may be a worthwhile tradeoff.

Google tames Reader’s dreaded “Mark All As Read” button

This is a few weeks late, because I use the groovy Greasemonkey script that saves a person from the old “Mark All As Read” gotchas (1, 2, 3, and 4) in Google Reader, but it seems Google actually took steps to defang this disaster waiting to happen.

“This dialog box doesn’t show up every time, but only if you’re marking 50 or more posts as read. We chose this as a balance between helping people avoid accidentally losing large amounts of unread items, while not being so intrusive as to interrupt people on every single mark-all-as-read action. Thanks for your feedback on it, though. We appreciate hearing what folks think about features and changes so we can keep iterating and improving.


Source here. [This change was coincident with the new favicon, which I did notice. Old: greader-old.gif New: greader-new.gif]

Now if only old unread posts wouldn’t simply vanish after some vague, undefined, and varying (in my experience) amount of time. (1, 2, and 3)

Briefly noted: Greader stats with detail

I have often thought, as I hovered my mouse over the graphs on Google Reader’s trends page, that they should let you see the actual numeric value of each bar in a pop-up. Today I wound up using Greader in IE6 and – lo and behold – the numeric data are visible their in a pop-up. I check back over in Firefox and no dice.

It’s an unusual day when I get a reason to fire up IE. This discovery will lead to better stats analysis, rest assured. [Minor update: the pop-ups do work in Camino on my Mac.]

[If anyone knows how to access these pop-ups in Firefox, please let me know. And automated extraction would be, of course, the holy grail.]

Google Reader Trends: October & November Update

Another exciting series of posts here at QES revolves around my obsessive compulsive review of my Google Reader RSS reading statistics. Ever since the Greader team launched this feature, I have periodically posted my feed reading stats – mostly to give me a sense of whether is I am getting better or worse, more efficient or more manic (or both), etc.

Previous items in this series are here: May, June, (July was botched), August, and September.

I took the requisite screen shots for my October stats, but I either forgot or lost the text string to generate some of my data, so there’s a hole in the bucket, dear Liza.

Greader Stats 20071031-3 Greader Stats 20071031-1 Greader Stats 20071031-2

Luckily, I have both the screen shots and the text I need for November, so that all follows below.

From your 348 subscriptions, over the last 30 days you read 20,173 items, starred 8 items, shared 10 items, and emailed 35 items.

Greader Stats 20071130-4] Greader Stats 20071130-5] Greader Stats 20071130-6]

Google Docs stats visible here. These stats are thrown off by my recent run-ins with the @#$ mark all as read button. Happily, that peril is behind me now.