Google Is #Trending
Google announced a few updates to Google Reader last week that I thought were interesting. For those of you who are relatively new to the blogosphere and do not know what Google Reader is or how and why to use it, please read here for the Benefits of Using Google Reader. Anyway, last week Google announced the addition of the new Explore section for their Reader application. One of the features of this new addition is the Popular Items sections. In the spirit of the #trending topics functionality that Twitter provides, Google Reader now uses algorithms to track well-liked images, videos, and pages from the internet and order these items to help you find popular content. This does not always find you content related to your other feeds, but in my limited use of this feature I have already found some off-topic, yet very interesting things.
Another feature that has apparently been around for a while that I never knew about is the Recommendations section. This was tucked away somewhere that I never bothered looking at, but they have now moved it to this new Explore section. This section uses your Reader trends and even web searches to generate a list of feeds that Google and their infinite wisdom think you might like. Using this functionality this morning I actually found a really cool blog that I will now follow.
Google Reader is a killer application for anyone looking to stay in tune with what is going on and the latest trends in their industry. And with this new functionality it just got better. I typically spend about 30 minutes to an hour a day going through my list, and now I can get even more out of that time.