Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Technology Run Amok?

JR Sanders posted a Facebook reference to a new reading technology. Instead of words spread across a page or screen, a stream of words is presented, one word at a time. You can see an interesting demonstration at the spritz home page. Supposedly, you can read much faster by not moving your eyes. Now you can read completely immobile. You do, however, still need to lift that cup of coffee to your lips and swallow.

Spritz claims you could read one of my Steve Dancy Tales in well under 2 hours. I’m not impressed. I searched all over the site, but found no new gizmo that will help me write faster. While I’m stuck at about a thousand words a day, my readers will plow through my stories at 1,000 words per minute! Something does not compute. I already feel stressed because it takes so long to publish the next book in the series.

I’m not sure what’s so new about this concept anyway; after all, ticker tapes have been around for eons, albeit missing the eye catching red letter, of course. I think there are some great applications for this technology, but not fiction. Fiction should be savored, not forced fed. And force fed was my impression of the Spritz demo. My attention could never lapse, I had difficulty absorbing numbers, and I couldn’t retrace my steps. I felt like I was at the gym trying to beat my personal best. Oh well, I’m an old fuddy-duddy. The kids flit from thing to thing so fast they probably wouldn't read fiction unless they could finish it before getting to the front of a TSA line at the airport.

I do have one question. Will paragraphs matter anymore?

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