Introducing Spritz: A Paradigm Shift On How We Read Text
Imagine being able devour a 1000 page novel in just a little over 10 hours; easily doing away the arduous task of moving your eyes left to right, only to be chipping away at a massive block of tiny text line by line. Or perhaps, even eliminating the monotony of scrolling and zooming through a body of words on your mobile, all while trying to remember where you left off on that last line. We’ve all experienced the ladder of those two situations. The average human is said to read at sluggish 220 words per minute, a statistic that Boston-based startup, Spritz, hopes to propel into the upper echelons on human potential with their new technology.
How it Works
According to their website, Spritz states: “The time consuming part of reading lies mainly in the actual eye movements from word to word and sentence to sentence.” Aside from that, the standard process of actually reading something in its physical form occupies a large amount of space. To combat this age-old issue, Spritz adopts the “smaller-is-better” attitude we tend take with new and emerging technologies.
The idea simple, and yet, strangely effective. The technology operates in a small and discreet box, which flashes one word at a time from a selected body of text. Each word has a specially selected letter that is colored red, as a way to hone your focus and keep your eye still, all while being able to easily absorb the word. This “rapid fire” approach is surprisingly easy to read. At the top of their homepage, you can experience how the process works. This tutorial starts you out at 250 WPM, 30 words more than the average reader. From there, you can attempt 300 WPM, 500 WPM – a speed at which an already deft reader can excel at comfortably – and even go all the way up to 1000 WPM.
Spritz operates on a subtle function buried in the brain’s infrastructure, known as: the “optimal recognition point.” We humans tend to focus on one central point in every word we see, which in Spritz, is highlighted by the color red mentioned earlier. For instance, when we see the world “matters,” our optimal recognition point focuses on the first “t,” so what we truly see is: matters.
The second part of the equation is the use of rhythm to condition the brain to adapt to an increase of speed. The company claims that after a few sessions of Spritz at, say, 250 WPM, you will quickly be able to move on to higher speeds at an extremely quicker rate – as opposed to using a speed reading course, or a similar streaming-word app.
Launching on the Samsung Galaxy S5 and Gear 2
The company’s inaugural launch begins on the platform where their product will best be utilized, mobile (and wearable) devices. Unveiling their new technology on these avenues, Spritz will perform tasks like reading emails in a comfortable and convenient manner, as it will be implemented within the device’s email application.
Potential “eye-catching” problems
While “Spritzing” may speed up your reading ability, it can come at a small, but necessary, cost: blinking. For optophobes, or just anyone who can’t keep their eyes open for a long periods of time, this new innovation in reading could do more harm than good. However, if combined with eye-catching technology – an innovation that is not too far away in the future of tech – we could see features implemented that stop the stream of text if we blink, or even look away.
While Spritz may not be ideal for fully immersing yourself into a beautiful work of fiction, it could come in handy for cramming purely informational bodies of text in a small amount of time. Nevertheless, this software does not lack innovation, as it holds a tremendous amount of potential for implementation and complementation for future technological endeavors.
What are your thoughts on Spritz? I’d really like to know what you think, so feel free to share in the comments below.