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Frequently Asked Questions

Reading fast on-line and off-line with great comprehension isn't easy. Like developing any other skill, learning how to read faster takes practice and lots of repetition. We've developed a curriculum that makes practicing as painless and streamlined as possible with feedback to keep you on-track. Read on for answers to some common questions.

    Getting Started

  1. readfa.st is an online educational application that teaches users how to read faster. For more information check out our About page.

  2. readfa.st is completely free to individuals. If you are interested in integrating readfa.st into your school or organization send an e-mail to contact@readfa.st for information for institutional functionality and pricing.

  3. Sign-up for readfa.st through the "Connect with Facebook" link on our splash page or enter your full-name, email and password and confirm your e-mail address by clicking on the link in the follow-up e-mail.

  4. Getting the Most Out of the Curriculum

  5. We have taken the latest speed-reading curricula and cut out all of the extraneous exercises to create an effective, simple tool to improve reading speed. The readfa.st curriculum forces users to read at speeds that push the upper limits of your comprehension and by constantly challenging you to push yourself faster; at the same time we use regular quizzes to ensure that you maintain your understanding of the text.

  6. Our own experience, and the best evidence available, suggest that learning to read faster in a controlled environment is a very quick process - many users have doubled their reading speed on readfa.st with just a few weeks of regular use. The real prize is to make these gains in reading speed carry-over to your other on-line and off-line reading - a task that requires significant practice to re-train the habits and learned behaviors you developed when you first learned to read.

  7. Experience, represented by the odometer, estimates how much you have practiced in total and can help give you a sense of how your reading speed improvements on readfa.st will translate to off-line reading.

    Momentum, represented by the speedometer, estimates the effectiveness of your current practice. As you practice more in a short-period of time, you develop the correct reading habits faster - this increases your Momentum, which in turn increases the rate at which you earn Experience.

    The specific details and interactions of Momentum and Experience will likely be refined as we get a better understanding of how practice and improvement are related.

  8. Little Stuff

  9. Yup. When you're reading something, at the top right of the reading area there is a gear icon. Click on it, and you can change your reading settings. In addition to changing the font size, you can change the background text color (if you set it to black, the text you are reading will be underlined), how many words are shown, and how many words are shown in each group of words, and you can collapse the right-side profile to reduce distraction.

  10. Sorry about that! Stripping content from webpages is a tricky business, and we're not perfect (yet), but we're always trying to improve. If you feel like it should have worked on a site, let us know at contact@readfa.st and we'll try to fix it. Thanks!

  11. We always try to get an image when the bookmarklet is used on a website, but sometimes the article doesn't have an appropriate image, or it does but we fail to grab it. If you feel like an image should have been pulled with an article, let us know at contact@readfa.st and we'll try to fix it. Thanks!

  12. Yup. Click here to paste content. Alternately, you can select the "copy/paste" option from the Content drop-down at the top right.

  13. The star indicates whether the article you're reading is something someone shared with you, or that you marked to read later. If the star is not highlighted, it means that the article is not on your unread list; you can change this by clicking on it. Similarly, if the star is highlighted, click on it to remove the article from your reading list.

  14. On pieces of content that you add, you'll see a little trash can icon in the top right. Click on it, and you'll be able to remove the content from the site

  15. It very well could be. If you're feeling kind, please let us know at bugs@readfa.st. It'd help if you could include details about what went wrong, and mention your own system and browser versions, but any information is appreciated. Thanks!

  16. Other Questions

  17. Not at the moment, though we certainly intend to at some point. Feel free to try out the bookmarklet on content from sites in other languages - it might work. Anecdotally, we've found that languages in Latin or Cyrillic script seem to work (but caveat emptor), and that Chinese does not work.

  18. We are professionals based in New York, using technology to solve problems that we feel passionate about and make our local, national, and global community a more educated, interesting place to live. For more about each of us see our Team page.

  19. Ani, one of our co-founders, read at over 1,000 words per minute without any training. When we noticed how blazingly fast he was finishing books, we began to look into what makes people read at such vastly different speeds. We did extensive research into the scientific (and pseudo-scientific) literature around how people read, but the body of work is not very encouraging. Most speed-reading products make unverified and unverifiable claims about their effectiveness, and because of their SEO and sales interests, those specious claims overwhelm most legitimate discussion around speed-reading. One of our goals is for readfa.st to help us better understand the process of reading and what factors affect speed and comprehension.

  20. We understand the importance of keeping your information private and protected; readfa.st will not sell or share any identifying data and we will work hard to address your privacy concerns. For more information see our Privacy Policy.

If you have any questions that haven't been covered in the FAQ, give us a shout at: contact@readfa.st

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