Monday, September 8, 2008

Why I love Google Reader

Okay. I'll start out by stating that this post is not really about music. Then I'll add that I am not being paid by Google to advertise their products.


Now we've got that out of the way I can wax lyrical about Google Reader. It's brilliant.

In case you hadn't noticed, I'm online a lot (no - really?), and Reader enables me to keep track of all my regular reads in a nice, tidy way. You can add anything from the BBC News and Mensa puzzles through to the PotterCast Podcast - and read, view, listen to and think about the latest all in one place.

In other words, no more mucking about shuffling from one website to another. And yes - you can even read the City of Dunedin Choir Blog over at Google Reader :-)

Building a friends list

People who use Reader can build a 'friends list', in pretty much the same way you would if you were using a Livejournal, or Facebook, or other social networking facility - by selecting emails of friends you know. This has several benefits.

Sharing articles

When you grab a Reader account, you can choose to share articles you find of interest with any friends you may have who also use Reader.

So, for example, when the news broke about Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae over in the US, I was able to share articles about this massive story with friends who are also interested in the US economic meltdown. By sharing the articles, I save my friends time and effort as well.

Note that this is NOT the same as emailing an article. You don't clutter up an Inbox. It's just that if a friend clicks on my name in their 'friends list', they can see which articles I have chosen to share with my friends. They will not see all the articles I am reading - just those I have chosen to share.

I can opt to email articles as well, but I save this for rare occasions, and my friends all do the same. The system works well.

Getting Started

All you need to get started at Google Reader is a Gmail account - and they're free. Gmail can easily be forwarded to any current email account you usually use as well, although I prefer Gmail and use it as my home base as it is quick and convenient.

How can this help choristers, and why is this relevant to you all, you may be asking?

Well, my answer is that anything that saves time, makes life easier, puts the information we need all in one place, and is free, is relevant to pretty much anyone - and that includes choristers.


Leta said...

I wonder how the new Google Chrome browser will perform - you might like this!

The bottom line here seems to be "everything in one place", including applications. It's still in beta, but ready for trying out.

daharja said...

Ah - but I'm a Macgrrl. No chrome for me just yet :-(

I'll try not to be too upset though. The fact that I can't try it out yet is more than offset by the fact that I don't have to deal with Microslush Windoze on a daily basis!