Google Reader is not good

I’m starting to get really hacked off with Google Reader. I’ve mentioned this already, but I thought I might fill in a few more reasons. You might be thinking: why haven’t these been submitted as bugs to the Reader team? Well, most of them aren’t really susceptible to that. I’ll come back to this point later. The old version kept dying all the time: it popped up a “loading” screen and it never went away. Forced refresh sometimes brought it back, and sometimes didn’t. When the all-new exciting version came out I thought that this problem might be fixed: in fact, it’s actually got worse. I find Reader hangs probably once every three or four times I use it. There’s no point in doing Ajax things if you have to wait 20 seconds for it to load. I’ve already ranted about this, though. As far as I can tell, you can no longer skip to the next item by pressing space. Maybe this works for everyone else, because it ties into… If you have All Items shown, and some new items have arrived since you clicked it, I can’t find a way to refresh the list of All Items. I have to switch to Home and then switch back to All Items again, with two long waits with a loading screen. Apparently “r” is meant to refresh, but that doesn’t do anything. I’ve tried “r” and alt+r and neither seem to help. It gets confused about whether articles have unread items or not. See here: The left hand pane shows Python News with a (1) for one unread item, the header shows I could not get Reader to show me this mysterious unread item, or to acknowledge that it wasn’t there. I tried a full refresh (just loading Reader again), I tried switching to Home, back to All Items, I tried showing the feed individually (which is what the screenshot shows). This also happened with other feeds; the only way I could get the supposed new items alert (the “1 new items” and the (1) in the left pane) to go away was to “View all items” (all of which appeared to be read) and then say “Mark all read”. Now, though, I’m left with the lingering suspicion that there really was an unread item and now I won’t ever get to read it. (Plus: 1 new items? Hm.) In terms of filing bugs: what should I do about that last one? I have no idea how to replicate it, I can’t give instructions. I could say “look at my Reader page and you’ll see it”, but then I basically can’t use Reader until I get an acknowledgement that the Reader team have diagnosed the problem, which I don’t want to do. Anyway, as soon as I’ve got my customisations done to Rawdog, I’m switching. Sorry, Google team. I have to say that Gmail is increasingly getting confused and having to be full-refreshed or just hanging on the “Sending…” bit when trying to send a mail (it’s still an Ajax loading screen, even if it’s just in the top right hand corner). Makes me sad. If Google can’t make this stuff work, who can? Maybe I should look harder at the Yahoo stuff instead? They seem to be coming on strong recently.

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