Google Reader is the greatest, except when it’s not. Take shared items for instance. It’s convenient to simply click the share control while reading an item and to have that item show up on your very own private feed. Distribute the secret feed URL to your friends, syndicate it on your blog, isn’t it peachy!
But what if you are reading an item in Google Reader and you decide delve a bit deeper — navigating onto a blog, or some other site. Now let’s say you find something really cool that you’d like to add to your Google Reader shared items feed. Well you can’t do it — you’re not inside the Google Reader application any more and Google has exposed no external means of adding items to that feed.
But hold on… isn’t del.icio.us really good at this stuff? It’s all about bookmarks and tagging and open RESTy web services. There are a number of applications integrated with del.icio.us including Pukka, Ryan Tomayko’s del.icio.us addresslets, and numerous bookmarklet generators from Ryan and others.
These tools are great for general purpose tagging. The problem is they aren’t integrated with Google Reader. Click your generated bookmarklet while reading an item in Google Reader and you’ll create a tag to Google Reader itself — not the item you’re reading.
To address the lack of Google Reader integration, I’ve created yet another bookmarklet generator. This one generates a Google Reader Del.icio.us Tagging bookmarklet — a Gordita. Click the bookmarklet while you’re reading an item in Google Reader and you’ll tag the current item (using Google Reader’s meta-data). Click the bookmarklet while reading some other site (other than Google Reader) and it works as you’d expect — using the current location and page title for the tag metadata. Enter your del.icio.us username in this form and click the “New Gordita” button. A window will pop up, containing a hyperlink. Drag that hyperlink to your browser’s menu bar and then click that thing when you want to tag an item in Google Reader or just tag any old page. Oh, and in either situation — your current selection gets injected into the notes field of your new entry. (I used the code generated by Ryan Tomayko’s experimental-delicious-thing-generator as a starting point — thanks Ryan!)
PS If you’re running Firefox 2.0 you’ll notice (or not!) that Gordita, and in fact most windows opened by bookmarklets are opening behind the focus window — instead of on top where you’d like ’em. The problem is documented in bugzilla bug 232605 and I’ve verified that the Firefox nightly (burning edge) actually fixes this problem as of 11/4/2006.
PPS The Mac workaround for the Firefox 2.0 bug is to use command-` that’s command-backquote to cycle to the newly opened window. Windows folks can use alt-tab.
Update: September 25, 2007
In response to John’s feedback I’ve tweaked the bookmarket (generator) so that Gordita no longer gives “undefined” as the subject. Let me know if you have any more problems.