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Editorial: Is the new speed-reading program destroying literature?

What's the rush?

Man using mobile smart phone while relaxing in a hammock Spritz will roll out on the newest Samsung Galaxy phone and watch models.
Credit: Colourbox

If you're looking to read "Crime and Punishment" on your subway ride to work, Spritz can help you do it. The not-yet released text streaming technology is aiming to help readers get through books faster by flashing the words in rapid succession. The program was developed by considering the same skills taught in speed reading classes, mainly fixating on the middle-left part of the word.The app has different speeds, so once you've mastered regular speed reading, you can move on to stealth mode, "reading" up to 1,000 words per minute.

This type of reading may be fine for when you have endless pages of dull textbook pages to get through, but when you're reading for pleasure, what's the rush? Seeing words in flash succession isn't the way the author intended for it to be read. Some prose is meant to be mulled over slowly, sinking in slowly.

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Should a 400 page novel be consumed in an hour just because it can be done? Does someone who reads 1000 words a minute get as much out of a reading as someone who chooses to read at a slower rate? Share your thoughts!

Follow Emily on Twitter: @EmLaurence

 
 
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