January 22, 2009

Feedly Mini Adds Buzz to Browsing, Goes Beyond Google Reader

By Phil Glockner of Scribkin (FriendFeed/Twitter)

Feedly has announced a new feature today, the latest in a series of mostly behind-the-scenes refinements and improvements to Google Reader companion service which launched back in June. The new feature is intriguing, as it can appear on any web page that has a corresponding URL to one found in your Google Reader list.

It's called Feedly Mini. And while it's small, it's a big deal.

Technically, a feature similar to this was tested out before, in the form of a dark sidebar (mentioned here). But this new iteration is lighter, faster, and in my opinion, much cooler.

Feedly MiniHere you can see the new mini bar in action, on a recent post here on this blog. The default configuration is for the mini bar to only appear on URLs that are also in your Google Reader blog and 'hot topics' on FriendFeed and and Digg, but you will be able to use the Feedly preferences settings to change the scope later.

As you can see, the Feedly Mini bar has three main areas:
  1. A status area that shows how many times the article has been shared on Google Reader, shares on FriendFeed, and number of Diggs. And yes, that's conversations on FriendFeed, not comments. I checked.
  2. An area to add a note, just like you can when sharing an article in Google Reader.
  3. Action links to perform on the current article. You can share, save for later (or star), or hide the post in Feedly.
Next BookmarkletThis feature reminds me a lot of the much more rudimentary feature in Google Reader where you could use a bookmarklet to navigate to the next article in your subscription list. However, Feedly Mini throws in some great buzz numbers and the ability to share with a comment.

In fact, you could probably use these two technologies together! In theory, if you use the next bookmarklet, Feedly Mini will pop up on each article, allowing additional options. Nice! You can find the next bookmarklet in the goodies tab of Google Reader's settings area.

If you're not already checking out Feedly, and you're a Firefox user, you owe it to yourself to see what Edwin and team are doing in the world of feeds and content discovery. Check out Feedly at http://www.feedly.com.

Read more by Phil Glockner at Scribkin.com.