This quick ‘Bionic Reading’ hack has gone viral, but is it any good?

What kind of reader are you? Do your eyes move from left to right as you take in the information on the page? Or are you a resident who takes a moment to absorb every word – and every page?

Whatever your style, there’s now a new speed reading hack making the rounds on Twitter. It’s called ‘bionic reading’ and it really divides people.

Switzerland-based typography expert Renato Casutt has been working on the new approach, which guides readers through text using “artificial fixation points.”

Bolding or highlighting the letters at the beginning of a word allows a reader’s brain to identify them with less effort and concentration. In theory, this speeds up how fast you read because you don’t have to focus on every word.

This is because, as the researchers at Bionic Reading explain, your brain actually reads faster than your eye because it has a dictionary of words stored from all the reading you’ve ever done.

As the website puts it: β€œYour brain is a supercomputer and it can read very well. Bionic Reading reworks texts to emphasize the most concise parts of words. This guides the eye over the text and the brain remembers previously learned words faster.

An example was shared on Twitter, with regular and ‘bionic’ text side by side to show how we would normally read text and how the new technique could use us.

Try reading the words below for yourself.

People are certainly impressed, with several posts sharing the hack overnight, but many readers also disagree on whether the new technique is a good or bad thing.

Some welcomed the new approach. “It’s unbelievable how it feels to read this, finally unlocking 100% of your brain,” wrote one Twitter user, who suggested that someone at Twitter should “turn it on” too.

But others feared that fast reading was “robotic” in this way, would take the pleasure out of reading, and might make you not withhold information.

It was even called a “sickening technoperversion”.

Some Twitter users said it could help people with cognitive problems such as dyslexia or ADHD, while others suggested it would do the opposite and make it more difficult, as she could probably already replace a word “close enough.” , which could completely change the context of what was read.

β€œI’m not sure if this helps me, but I don’t think it bothers me, and I wouldn’t mind reading text supplemented like this. And if it helps some people a lot, it’s worth implementing it as an option, especially because it’s so simple,” wrote another.

If you’re worried about this font taking over all of your reading material, don’t worry, it’s unlikely to happen anytime soon.

β€œBionic reading” is still in the early stages of development and is something you can access through a paid app.

So unless you really really want to, you can just keep reading.

Leave a Comment