Paper, Print & Pixels

Books and Publishing in the Digital Age

Will A New Speed Reading App Change the Way We Read Novels?

Nighttime readingWhat if you had the ability to blaze through the stack of novels on your nightstand at a reading speed of 1,000 words per minute? A new software developed by Boston-based developer Spritz promises to train a person how to do just that. Imagine how much time could be saved! You know, to read more novels!

Spritz has developed a method that promises to increase a person’s reading speed by using an “Optimal Recognition Point” to allow easy recognition of a word. Instead of showing the text line-by-line, the app flashes one word at a time on your mobile screen at the desired reading speed. The app starts with the average person’s reading speed, 250 words per minute, and allows you to progress up to 1,000 wpm.

A speed-reading app sounds especially intriguing when I notice a copy of The Fountainhead on my nightstand. After reading several chapters, the bookmark poking out shows how little of a dent I’ve made in the novel over the past few nights.

I’m not exactly a slow reader, but I actually relish those moments when I pause to take in what I’ve just read. A major plot revelation, the end of a chapter, or a break in the page are all opportunities to reflect on the plot up until that point. At times I like to flip back through the pages I’ve already read to make connections or to guess where the narrative may be heading. Re-reading particularly eloquent phrases and sentences is one of my favorite parts of delving into a novel. I’m not convinced that having the ability to read 1,000 words per minute would be the best way to experience and enjoy a novel.

Check out the Refinery29 post to try the Spritz speed reading app for yourself.

Image: Nighttime reading

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This entry was posted on March 14, 2014 by in Apps and tagged , , .
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