Friday, August 1, 2008

What on earth has happened to Google Reader?

Tēnā koutou katoa
Greetings to you all

I'm normally quite careful to keep up to date with things that appear in my Google Reader.

But lately I've found it to be a blogger's nightmare!

Only yesterday I noticed that some sites I checked regularly simply didn't appear in the list (I have about 90 listed blogs).

Then I spotted a bubble that obscured part of the screen telling me something about Reader and my blog roll - something to do with items on my blog roll being not listed in my subscriptions, or whatever.

I didn't bother about this, probably because I was viewing Reader on another computer and got distracted, so I decided to ignore it.

But no, I found that this was indeed what was happening. And by a process that seemed to take place over 24 hours, most of my blog roll items were removed from the listed sites in Reader. During this time I made several attempts at opening manage subscriptions but to no avail. Some perfunctory checks on different browsers confirmed that it wasn't anything to do with Firefox or IE.

This morning I found that manage subscriptions was working again and to my relief, all my subscriptions were listed there. So I dashed back to Reader home page and refreshed it, only to discover that, yes, it listed most sites that were NOT on my blog roll. Even my own blog site, that I had subscribed to when first built, was not on the list!

I thought I had been shown something fantastic when Michele Martin first explained how Reader worked - I had. I could check to see what new posts had arrived from all my favourite blog sites and tell at a glance how many of each there were. But now when I read the new posts in a site it disappears from the list.

What use is that?

Well, it appears that Reader will list those sites that have posts not yet read. Any sites not appearing in Reader's list are those that have been read up to date with no unread new posts.


I thought I was going mad!

(Update 3/08/08) As you can read from the discussion below, Angela prompted me to do a bit of playing about. The solution is simple. Under Add subscription in the left panel in Reader is a toggle option that I had obviously clicked by mistake. It threw Reader into the mode described above - I've toggled it back now:

Ka kite anō
Catch ya later


Anonymous said...

Hi Ken
As far I was aware, Google Reader always did this - I thought that once a post had been read, it wouldn't show up again. However, I can understand your frustration ... there have been times when I've wanted to go back and read something again, but couldn't quite remember who posted it and on which blog! Still, I'm now wondering if there is/was another version of Google Reader which I'm not using, as I've always seen it this way. Or, maybe, I'm also going mad. :-P
Ka kite

Blogger In Middle-earth said...

Tēnā koe Angela!

Thanks for your point about other versions. Obviously one explanation for my mystery experience recently would be that an update in version has occurred since a few days ago.

I am more than certain (if that's possible:-) that my Reader is now reacting in quite a different way than it has over the months May to end of July. I thrashed my Reader during that time and found that it had its moments.

Like you, I would often go looking for a post that I'd read some days or even weeks before, not being able to remember exactly when it was posted or even who posted it. Google Reader (the version that I installed in May) permitted me to access a blog-site even if I was up to date with all the reading on it and look way back at some earlier post.

Also, there have been some changes even in the version I used, suggesting that, perhaps, there have been a few updates happening, even since May. One is that Reader used to permit me to subscribe twice to the same site and these listings appeared as separate subscriptions.

In recent weeks I've noticed that this does not occur and that Reader knows that I'm just a wally and ignores the addition of a subscription where it already exists.

Ka kite
from Middle-earth

Blogger In Middle-earth said...

Kia ora Angela!

Okay, okay, I admit it. I'm a wally.

But hey, we might have learnt something through this. After much pottering around with Reader I found that there are many little adjustments that one can do that are not always obvious at first glance.

I found that under Add subcription is the toggle:

Show: updated - all.

Click the link all and it toggles to:

Show: updated - all.

Thank you for that Angela! A problem aired is a problem shared. You helped me solve that one.

Ka kite