Readability

One of my aims in blogging for 15 minutes at a time is to be able to really focus on what I’m doing. Focus can be difficult to maintain for long periods, especially for the easily bored (and easily attracted to new shiny things) like myself. Writing is an activity that clearly requires focus – but what about reading?

Reading on the web is usually an activity that we measure in seconds rather than minutes. In the age of the 140 character message (I’m looking at you, Twitter) it’s easy to forget that reading can be an immersive activity worth investing focused chunks of time. Unfortunately text on the web, even when worth reading for an extended amount of time, is often formatted poorly and surrounded by ads, banners, widgets and all other kinds of distracting miscellany.

Enter Readability, a “lab experiment” from arc90. Readability is a bookmarklet that strips out extraneous web page elements leaving just the main text in your choice of sizes and styles. I love this tool. I read a lot on the web and so many pages are cluttered with text that is too small or with too low contrast. Readability does away with those annoyances and lets me focus on the text and only the text. Give it a try, and happy reading.

1 Comment »

  1. Sean Johnson Said,

    March 6, 2009 @ 4:41 am

    Ben,

    I just tried readability and it’s awesome! Thanks for the tip.

    I often find myself putting of reading longer pages/articles on the web and I think bad typography and distracting thingamabobs are often the culprit. This is just what the Dr. ordered.

    Thanks, Sean

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