Woke up to today to discover that Google is killing Reader. I’m shocked, dismayed, horrified — and a little bit furious. 
Google Reader, if you don’t know, is an RSS reader. I use it to follow (as of today) 137 blogs. My bookmarks toolbar has a Subscribe button, which is a javascript. Every time I stumble across a blog that looks interesting, I click the Subscribe button. When I want to read blogs, I use the Next button, also in my bookmarks toolbar, and it takes me to the next item in my feed. My internet experience isn’t that I check out a few news sites in the morning and randomly look up a few bookmarked sites. Instead I look at information that is exactly tailored to my interests, blogs on writing and cooking, self-publishing and book reviews, some games and fan sites, mommy blogs and people that I just think are interesting. 
I used to use iGoogle for that purpose. I had a home page that was exactly what I wanted. And then Google decided to kill iGoogle. It took me months to get my web experience back to a place where it was comfortable. Losing iGoogle was like losing television — or even more, like losing access to a telephone. I’d turn to a thing I needed, a basic tool that I took for granted, and it wasn’t there anymore. Finally, finally, after months, I got settled into this new system with Reader. And now Google is killing Reader? 
Well, fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me three times? Not going to happen. As far as I’m concerned, Google is now officially untrustworthy
Google’s killing Reader?  Fine, I’m going to kill Google — at least from my computer. 
That means saying goodbye to Google Chrome. Okay, I can use Firefox. Saying goodbye to Google Drive. No problem, I’ll go back to Microsoft. Moving my blog — that’s okay, lots of people say that WordPress is better than blogger anyway. Giving up gmail means changing my email address in lots of places, but that’s okay, too. Maybe I’ll get my own domain with an email address or two included. I’m fine with giving up Google shopping: I usually wind up on Amazon in the end anyway, so no regrets there. I use Google Talk, but I’ve used other chat options, I can live without it. I’ve never liked Google + at all, so giving that up is not a problem.
Google, of course, has an assortment of other tools, but I can live without them, too. Google is not essential for anything, even search, except …. Google Maps. 
Which brings me back to the point of this post. I will be purging Google from my life in April. It’s going to be a big project and I won’t have time to tackle it until then. But when I do, how do I replace Google Maps? It’s the one Google tool for which I can think of no substitute. Any ideas?