This, my friends, is Google Reader. I know most of you know what this is and probably love it as much as I do, so you can feel free to go about your merry way. But I do know there are a couple of you looking at me like, ‘what the heck is she blathering on about now, I’ll just skip down to the food pictures.’ Well, STOP! There are no food pictures today. No, wait, don’t go yet!!! You need to know about Google Reader first.
Since you didn’t get to my site this morning from Google Reader that means you either had my blog bookmarked (thank you!), you manually typed in my web address (again, thanks!), or you clicked on me from a link. (and aren’t you glad you did? lol!) Now, I’m going to assume that if you like to read my blog, you probably like to read other blogs. What’s not to like, there’s a whole world out there, a blog on every topic imaginable! Wouldn’t it be nice if instead of you searching through your bookmarks every day and visiting all your blogs separately, someone got to your computer ahead of you and got all the new postings up for you? Then all you would have to do is grab a cup of coffee and read all the new entries. Wouldn’t that be FANTASTIC?!? Kind of like a daily magazine that you get to design for yourself! That is what Google Reader is.
I follow 101 different blogs. That’s a lot of extraneous clicking, if you ask me. And not everybody posts every single day. So there’s some wasted clicking. Google Reader automatically finds all the new posts and brings them to me every morning. Sounds awesome, right? Well, let’s get you signed up! Go to https://www.google.com/accounts
First things first. Do you have a Google account? I use gmail, so I have an account. It also lets you create a Google ID, which comes in mighty handy when commenting on bloggers’ posts for one thing. Ok, get yourself a Google account and sign in.
Once you’re signed in you should come to this page. . .
Go down to the bottom where it says ‘more’, and give it a click.
Scroll down a bit to where it says ‘Reader’ (in the right hand column)
Give ‘Reader’ a click and you should see this. . . .
Welcome to Google Reader!!! Now you need to add some subscriptions. There are many ways to do this. Let’s start by leaving this window open and opening another. Now go to your favorite blog, say. . . . http://tuffetblog.blogspot.com/?
Right under the lovely header on this randomly selected blog, you see the words Posts RSS. I forget what RSS stands for (I’m sure you could Google it if you must know), but that is what you’re looking for. Give it a click. P.S. This is in different places on every blog, just search around until you find it!
It takes you to a screen with different options of having the site’s feed delivered to you. Since the only one I’m familiar with is Google Reader, and since it’s the title of my post, we’ll go with that. Click on the little button that says ‘+Google’.
The page will automatically take you back to your reader and tell you that you need to click the button to subscribe. Everybody’s doing it, go ahead! Click the button!
There, you’ve subscribed! Google Reader will thoughtfully bring you the last 10 posts of the blog you’ve just subscribed to and from that point out it will bring you every new post the blogger puts up! Done! No more extraneous clicking!
But wait! What if you can’t find the button on the blogger’s page that lets you follow? What will you dooooooooo?
Calm down, I’ll tell you. First, let’s go to a different blog. Say, for instance, http://songberries.blogspot.com/
Let’s skip looking for the button altogether. Just go up to the address bar and highlight it. Then press CTRL+C to copy it. Now, switch tabs back to the Google Reader that you left open earlier.
Do you see the button at the top of the left hand column that says, ‘+ Add a Subscription’? Click it!
It opens a little box right underneath. Click inside the box and press CTRL+V to paste the web address in.
Or, if you’re old school, you could just type it in the box yourself. Now click on ‘add’ and presto! Another blog added to your reader!
Now all you need to do is take five minutes and enter in all the blogs you have bookmarked and just watch all the posts fly in! Easy-peasy!!!
There are all sorts of cool things that Google Reader can do for you, this post would be a mile long if I listed all of them. Some of my favorites show up at the bottom of each post.
See the bar right under ‘Carol’ that says ‘add star’, ‘like’, ‘share’, ‘share with note’, ‘email’ etc? That’s an awesome bar right there! When you read a cool post that you think might appeal to your Great-Aunt Edna you can just click ‘email’.
Enter Great-Aunt Edna’s email address, write a quick note and hit send! And Google Reader will send your note and the post to her! Cool, huh!!!!
You can also click the little star next to ‘add star’. That will put a star on it (duh) and it automatically saves it for you! See in the left hand column, where it says ‘Starred Items’? Click that.
Look! There it is! And you hardly had to do anything! Awesome!
Okay, what if you saw a recipe in a food blog and you don’t remember whose it was? What if you forgot to star it? What then? Are you sunk? Do you have to wade through your history? No. This is so cool! Watch this!
Go up to the top of the screen. There is a search box just to the right of the words ‘Google Reader’. Type in what you’re looking for. Whoopie pies, for example. Who isn’t looking for whoopie pies?
Look at that!!! Coooooooooooooooooooooooool!!!!!!
So, now you have a shiny new toy to play with, and zero excuse not to keep up on your favorite blogs! Enjoy!
Now pop on over to We Are That Family and bone up on all the other great tips!