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Device Related > Word runner app

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message 1: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 8 comments Hi everyone,

I hope many of you have been playing around with the new Kindle Fire and Kindle Android app updates. How do you all like the Word Runner app? It's the new feature that helps you to read faster by flashing one word at a time across your screen at a pace you choose.

I personally love it! I have already read a couple books using it and I know I'm reading much faster. At first, my comprehension lagged a little behind but now that's improving as well. If you're comfortable sharing, I was wondering how fast everyone sets their pace at and how you think it's improved your speed. I am set at 475 right now in the book I'm reading.


message 2: by Zippergirl (new)

Zippergirl | 36 comments I use the Kindle app for my android tablet, but am clueless re: word runner. But it sure sounds cool.


message 3: by Jackie (new)

Jackie | 8 comments When you open up a book on your Kindle app, tap the button on the upper right hand corner (on my app it's an upside down ellipsis) and one of the options that comes up is Word Runner. The other options are "Shop in Bookstore, Add a Bookmark, Share Progress, and Word Wise". If you end up trying it let me know what you think. I've wanted to discuss it with someone and I don't know anyone else who's tried it yet, but I love it.


message 4: by YouKneeK (new)

YouKneeK I first learned about it this past December. I really like the concept, and was hoping I’d be able to use it successfully, but I had trouble and ended up giving up on it. I did spend several hours trying to get used to it, over the course of a week or so. I had issues both with eye strain and with keeping my attention on it. I also found that I was really frustrated by not being able to see things in context with only one word on the screen.

The eye strain surprised me since I stare at computer screens at least 10 hours a day without issues, but I had issues on both my phone and my tablet. I think my biggest problem in the eye strain department was that I couldn’t figure out how to blink without missing words. I wasn’t going super fast, either. I started at a pace that was slow enough to drive me crazy (maybe around 300 or so) and eventually increased it up to what felt like a fairly comfortable reading pace (maybe 450?). I don’t think I ever increased it past 450. I felt like I could go faster, but I felt like I was already missing too many words when I blinked.

I’ve never been a skimmer, so it drove me crazy to miss words. And then I’d get distracted by it – speculating what the word was that I’d missed based on the context of what I did see, and then I would get distracted by my distraction, and finally I’d just end up having to pause it and back up to the point where I’d missed the word. So then I’d try to avoid blinking, or blink really fast, but the more you think about your blinking patterns, the more you have to blink. :) My eyes would start watering and I usually ended up with a headache if I kept it up for more than half an hour, or if I tried it too frequently throughout the day. That was unusual for me too; I don’t normally get headaches.

I also really missed being able to see things in context. I feel like that affects my comprehension more than speed. I sometimes found it more difficult to interpret a complex sentence one word at a time versus just seeing the entire sentence at once. Also, many times when I read, I flick my eyes back to something I’ve read previously on the same page. Sometimes the sentence I’ve just read gives new meaning to something I’d read before, or I might want to fix a newly-introduced character name in my head, or because the context made me question whether I’d read something correctly before. I never realized just how often I make quick, split-second references back to something I’ve read before until I couldn’t do it anymore.

So between wanting to see things in context, and having to go back to catch things I’d missed while blinking or wiping away tears from the eye strain, I ended up pausing and/or scrolling backwards so often that I felt like my actual reading speed was cut in half and eventually it just got so frustrating that I had to give up so I could enjoy reading again. I’ll probably try it again eventually, because I would love to be able to read books a little faster and make better use of my limited reading time. I think I could conquer the physical discomfort in time, but I suspect it probably just isn’t a good fit for my reading style. I would probably have to save it for books that I’m less invested in, or maybe books that I’ve read before and don’t mind missing a few things here and there. I don’t do much re-reading, though.

Sorry for writing such a long reply! I too am very interested in hearing how other people have fared with it, or if anybody had similar issues and managed to find a way to deal with them.


message 5: by Zippergirl (new)

Zippergirl | 36 comments I had one book recently that allowed the word runner app but I found it very distracting not being able to absorb context with a back glance. I would prefer to see streaming text, I think, like subtitling on news reports.

I will try it again when I have another book with it.


message 6: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne (majmill7) | 4 comments YouKneeK wrote: "I first learned about it this past December. I really like the concept, and was hoping I’d be able to use it successfully, but I had trouble and ended up giving up on it. I did spend several hours ..."

DO NOT increase your speed very much! I am a speed reader with excellent comprehension and it costs me an arm and a leg for the number of books i consume daily!


message 7: by Jeanne (new)

Jeanne (majmill7) | 4 comments I agree not being able to see the whole sentence is a problem in absorbing context. My main complaint was the flickering when adjusting the speed upward to match my speed reading level. Really not a helpful app.


message 8: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Bedford | 5 comments I just tried this out on my lunch break. I found it surprisingly easy to use although I didn't go faster than 300wps. Not bad for 10 mins practice. I think I could grow to like it and I went into this fully expecting not to.

Just out of curiosity I put the speed up to the max setting, 900wps and I managed to keep up with it!! I have to admit I felt slightly sea-sick afterwards though.


message 9: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Bedford | 5 comments I just tried this out on my lunch break. I found it surprisingly easy to use although I didn't go faster than 300wps. Not bad for 10 mins practice. I think I could grow to like it and I went into this fully expecting not to.

Just out of curiosity I put the speed up to the max setting, 900wps and I managed to keep up with it!! I have to admit I felt slightly sea-sick afterwards though.


message 10: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Bedford | 5 comments Sorry about the double post. Still getting used to the goodreads iPhone app. I hit "post", nothing happened so I hit post again then it went through twice!


message 11: by Zippergirl (new)

Zippergirl | 36 comments I like the idea of this little speedy app, but I like to loll through my books, not rush. My brain likes a page of text so we (it and I) can glance back when necessary and try not to read ahead when we get to a 'good part.'

I'd definitely go for a scrolling text though.


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