Article by: Joseph Hadaway
Have an English novel that you haven’t read yet? Or a history reading you have you have to catch up on? Well, considering the fact that an average novel is roughly 64,000 words long and an average adult reads at approximately 300 words per minute, you’re going to be spending a lot of time catching up on reading, time that could be spent writing an essay or studying for a test. But worry no longer as the upcoming speed reading technology “Spritz”, already available to over ten thousand developers and companies, will soon be available to you. “Spritz” allows ordinary people to read up to speeds of nearly one-thousand words per minute, meaning that your English novel would soon be completed in little over an hour.
“Spritz” flashes individual words onto the screen where the computer will determine one letter to be the “Optimal Recognition Point” or the ORP, which will be shown in a different colour than the rest of the word. This is done to minimize the work done by the brain to recognize the word. After this, Spritz continues to the next word in the sequence, until the passage has been completed. This optimises what is known as Rapid Serial Visual Presentation (RSVP) technology, which is based on the idea that over 80% of the time spent reading is focused on your eyes ‘finding’ the next word to read. This technology is known to let an average person read even faster than professional speed readers: while the ‘score’ of a lower-level World Speed Reading Championship Participant is approximated to be roughly 1,200 words per minute with 68% comprehension, a higher-level “Spritz” user would be able to read at approximately 1,000 words per minute, with greater comprehension.
Of course, speed reading for literature and history classes only shows one of the many possible applications this new technology can have. In fact, speed reading can help maximize time in nearly every area of your life, whether its reading the news or emails, or perhaps even this very article.