Improving the Google Reader Send to Feature

I still think Google could do a lot better than it has done so far with the new “Send to” feature.  And I sure hope Google isn’t going to get all sharing and social network obsessed and turn Google Reader into some chaotic FriendFeed wannabe.  But I will admit that half a feature is better than none at all, and I have been experimenting with the “Send to” feature.

To me, of course, experiment means use, customize and improve.

The first thing I wanted to do was add my typical “Interesting:” to the beginning of items I send to Twitter.  Here’s how to hack up a custom “Send to Twitter” link.


All you have to do is change the word “Interesting:” to whatever you want to appear at the beginning of your Twitter post.  Easy as pie.  After setting this up, you may want to uncheck the default Twitter “Send to” option in the provided list.


I also hacked my “Send to Facebook” link to add a shortened link,


but I haven’t figured out a way to pre-populate the “What’s on your mind?” box yet.


If there’s a way to do that, I can’t figure it out.  Another example of Facebook making it hard to control what’s inside those walls.  The end result, however, is simply that I will continue to create little or no content from within Facebook.  I’ll just send my content there via an alternate path, for consumption by those who live in Facebook’s Pelbarigan-like city state.

Finally, I hacked the Delicious “Send to” link to include a Note “For future blog post.”  I would have greatly preferred to automatically add a Tag “FNOBP,” but there doesn’t seem to be a way to populate a tag via a URL.  Which is but one of a long list of reasons I almost never use Delicious.  If I could auto-populate a Tag, Delicious might find its way back into my toolbox, so I could store article ideas there and save my “Starred” Google Reader items for other things.

Sooo, the way I got around Delicious’s crappiness was to create a dedicated Gmail sub-email address, and write an “Email to” link to that address.


Then I set up a Filter in Gmail that identifies these emails, archives them and adds a “For Blog Post” label.


All in all, not a bad afternoon’s work.

One thought on “Improving the Google Reader Send to Feature

  1. How can you do to show the post content to WordPress? I mean that you can show that variables: ${url} ${title} ${source}, what else you can do if you want to show the post content or at least the excerpt?

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