Will Spritz Change the Liberal Arts?
When you sit up late, struggling to finish an interminably long book, you get tired and start reading slower and slower until it seems you’ll never make it through. Reading can sometimes feel like a burden. Combat your reading malaise by exploring new developments in reading technology.
Boston startup Spritz has developed a new patent-pending technology that enables users to read up to 1,000 words per minute. How? By “spritzing.”
Spritzing entails reading text in a new format. There are no pages and no lines. Instead, one word at a time appears in a specially designed frame to maximize focus and reading speed. While most students of the liberal arts tend to read slower the longer they grapple with a text, spritzing maintains a constant pace to help readers stay on track.
Before pronouncing spritzing the solution for overburdened liberal arts students, we need to consider a few questions. Is spritzing really the best way to read? Do readers using Spritz retain information as well as other readers?
Trials have shown that readers who spritz retain as much information as traditional readers, as long as they read at a manageable pace. But spritzing also eliminates images as well as page numbers, making it difficult to take notes and get a comprehensive feel for the information. For people who aren’t visual learners and who don’t rely heavily on notes, spritzing might be the perfect solution. But for those learners who need visuals and notes, it may pose some problems.
This project is still in its relatively early stages, developing and expanding to find its place in the market. The company is gradually starting to build a larger presence, creating a free app called “Powered by Spritz” and partnering with online readers. These partnerships include The Old Reader, Readsy, ReadMe!, and Sparker (a new SparkNotes app featuring Spritz technology). But they have yet to partner with major reading markets like Google Books or online newspapers.
So it seems spritzing likely won’t be replacing the book or ebook formats in the near future. But Spritz does offer an innovative, efficient approach to reading. Shake up your study habits and see whether spritzing suits your reading style.
Check out the Spritz website or smartphone app and try spritzing for yourself.
Written by Christie Greeley
Christie is a double major in English and History at Vassar College and a contributor to Forward Thinking, the Ashford University blog.
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