I spent a while this morning learning Google Reader. I had subscribed to this a while ago but never used it. I realized that it’s best (for me, at least!) for tracking blogs and sites that are only updated occasionally. For instance, in my earlier foray into Google Reader, I had subscribed to BBC Portado Mundo, which is a site with news in Spanish. I thought this would be a great way for me to remember to practice Spanish—and it would be, except that they send about 50 articles a day. For a news site, I think it makes more sense to go directly to the site when I have some time and select the 2 or 3 articles that interest me. (I had the same realization about Twitter; I subscribed to the NY Times and ended up with a million postings.)
I like to read blogs about saving money, so I put a few of those in. I subscribed to some of the Kid Lit blogs in the Elizabeth Bird article, SLJ, Joyce Valenza. These will be fun to look at, but the subscription that makes me happiest is to a food blog called Orangette. Since this blogs posts infrequently, it can be disappointing to check for new posts. Now I'll know when she's written something new.
No doubt there are many ways of fine-tuning my use of Google Reader to make it more effective, but I haven’t explored that deeply yet. I did at least organize some of the subscriptions into folders, and I starred some articles I’d like to go back to.