Taking the Google Reader Play Tour

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Taking the Google Reader Play Tour

by Clint Boulton

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Title Unknown

Google Reader Play presents items, including pictures, stories and YouTube videos, one at a time, but in a film-strip fashion. It's sort of like Google Fast Flip, but for Reader. Users can click the next arrow to move to the next selection, or click any item on the film strip below to fast-forward. Users can also click the title or image of any item to go to the original version on a Web page.

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The Controls

Yes, this man created the cell phone and is giving up his iPhone for the Motorola Droid. In the bottom left of the screen, controls let users hide the thumbnail viewer, switch to "magic view," adjust their stream settings or start the slideshow. That's right; Users who select this option, can just grab some popcorn, sit back and watch Reader Play by itself.

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No Thumbnails

This is what Reader Play looks like when you hide the thumbnail views.

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We Like This!

Note the familiar Google Reader controls in the middle, letting users star, like and share items. While users needn't be signed into their Google account for Reader Play they must be signed into to star, like, or share items. Reader and Reader Play share the same infrastructure, so any actions users take in one will be reflected in the other.

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Magic View

Introduced to Google Reader last October, the "magic" sorting option offers feed items based on personal usage and overall activity in Reader.

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Stream Settings

Reader Play lets users access their stream settings, including liked and starred items.

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Thanks to the focus on Recommended Items, Reader Play can also be a place to discover news.

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One man's idea of a joke (and readers' subsequent schadenfreude) is another's misery.

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Access Reader Play from Reader

Google is positioning Reader Play as a different view of Reader, not a replacement for it. In Reader, users can switch to Reader Play by clicking "View in Reader Play" from the feed settings menu.

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Reader Play Help

Google offers this help page for Reader Play with such useful tips such as the idea of enabling users who hooked up their Reader account in Google Buzz to let anything from Reader Play automatically appear in Google Buzz.

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