Google adds more personalization to Reader

Company has updated its RSS feed aggregator to try to make it easier for people to find the content they're most likely to care about.

Google has added new personalization features to Reader, its RSS feed aggregator, the company wrote in a blog post Thursday.

One new feature is dubbed Popular Items. Using algorithms, Reader will "find top-rising images, videos and pages from anywhere (not just your subscriptions)." From there, the app will lump all those pieces in the new Popular Items section. Based on a user's subscriptions and what someone is reading, Reader orders those stories by what it thinks a person likes best.

Reader's recommendations have been moved to the app's Explore section. Google also renamed it Recommended Sources. Like before, that feature will employ the user's Reader Trends and Web History to find a list of feeds he or she might like.

To make it easier for users to find the information they're most likely to care about, all Reader feeds now feature a sort option called Magic. According to Google, Magic "reorders items in the feed based on your personal usage, and overall activity in Reader, instead of default chronological order." Google said that the ranking is tailored to the user. The more the user clicks the "like" and "share" buttons on stories, the better the Magic sort will be.

Here is the Magic setting in action:

Google Reader
Screenshot by Don Reisinger/CNET

Featured Video
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

Microsoft leaves Apple in the dust with tablet and laptop innovation in 2015

Will there be one Apple Ring to rule them all? That's what a patent application says. Plus, building the thinnest gadget isn't innovation anymore and Apple just got a reality check from Microsoft.

by Brian Tong