Web

Read any website at 950 words per minute with this Squirt bookmarklet

squirt bookmarklet lets read webpage 950 words per minute header

“Good artists copy; great artists steal,” Pablo Picasso (and Steve Jobs) once said. And with his creation of Squirt, a speed-reading bookmarklet that brings the concept of the Spritz app for Android to any webpage, it seems clear that developer Cameron Boehmer falls into the latter category.

And by that I mean Squirt is virtually identical to the functionality of Spritz, using the same “Optimal Recognition Point,” or ORP, technique that keeps your eye focused on a single spot on words, allowing text to buzz into your brain at up to 950 words per minute. (Spritz goes up to 1,000 wpm.) At that rate, you could read the entire U.S. Constitution, including signatures, in less than five minutes.

Squirt also incorporates aspects of Readbility, whose open-source technology Boehmer added into the mix.

To use Squirt, simply install the Squirt bookmarlet by dragging it into your Chrome, Firefox, or Safari browser bookmark bar. Next, visit a webpage you want to read (this one, perhaps?), and click the Squirt bookmarklet. You’ll then be shown an overlay of Squirt, which will display the words using ORP at anywhere between 200 and 950 wpm.

At least, that’s how it should work. The Web app is still a bit wonky. It sometimes displays HTML code of a webpage rather than the words of that page’s article. You can “fix” this sometimes by scrolling down further in the article (that worked for me, anyway). It also seems to get hung up when it runs into in-copy images, and will cut out before the end of an article. Again, simply scrolling down seems to work out this kink.

Squirt is far from the only speed-reading browser app out there. The Spree Chrome add-on, for example, uses the same ORP as Spirtz and Squirt. Then there’s BeeLine Reader, another browser plugin, which colorizes text to help you zip through the end.

Regardless of which speed-reading app you use, there’s really no excuse for slogging your way through Web articles the old fashioned way.

Computing

New Chrome feature aimed at preventing websites from blocking Incognito Mode

A new Chrome feature will prevent websites from blocking Chrome users as they browse using Incognito Mode. The feature is supposed to fix a known loophole that allows websites to detect and block those using Incognito Mode.
Mobile

How to perform a reverse image search in Android or iOS

You can quickly use Google to search, and reverse search, images on a PC or laptop, but did you know it's almost as easy to do in Android and iOS? We explain how to do it here, whether you want to use Chrome or a third-party app.
Computing

These 30 useful apps are absolutely essential for Mac lovers

There are literally hundreds of thousands of great software programs compatible with MacOS, but which should you download? Look no further than our list of the best Mac apps you can find.
Computing

PDF to JPG conversion is as quick as a few clicks with these simple methods

Converting file formats can be an absolute pain, but it doesn't have to be. We've put together a comprehensive guide on how to convert a PDF to JPG, no matter which operating system you're running.
Computing

Russia will ‘unplug’ from the internet as part of a cyber-defense test

Authorities across Russia are planning on unplugging the country from the global internet as part of a test of its cyber defenses. The disconnection will briefly keep all internet traffic inside the country.
Gaming

These are the coolest games you can play on your Google Chrome browser right now

Not only is Google Chrome a fantastic web browser, it's also a versatile gaming platform that you can access from just about anywhere. Here are a few of our favorite titles for the platform.
Mobile

Is the 5G spectrum harmful to our health? Experts say, 'Don't freak out'

There's plenty of consumer anxiety about radiofrequency (RF) radiation, specifically around millimeter waves (mmWave) used on 5G networks, but is it based in reality? We asked the FDA to give us its official view on the subject.
Web

Gmail adds lots of new functionality to its right-click menu

Right-click on an email in Gmail and the list of actions is pretty limited. That's about to change, though, as Google has just announced it's expanding the list of options to make its email client that little bit more useful.
Computing

Tired of paying a monthly fee for Word? The best Microsoft Office alternatives

Looking for a competent word processor that isn't Microsoft Word? Thankfully, the best alternatives to Microsoft Office offer robust features, expansive compatibility, and an all-too-familiar aesthetic. Here are our favorites.
Computing

File Transfer Protocol explained: What FTP is and what it does

FTP stands for "File Transfer Protocol," and it's used to transfer files online. Most internet users don't need it, but web developers use it constantly. Here's what FTP is, how it works, and how you can get started using it.
Computing

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier today than ever, but choosing the right tool for the job isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our two favorite online tools.
Computing

Lose the key for your favorite software? These handy tools can find it for you

Missing product keys getting you down? We've chosen some of the best software license and product key finders in existence, so you can locate and document your precious keys on your Windows or MacOS machine.
Computing

From beautiful to downright weird, check out these great dual-monitor wallpapers

Multitasking with two monitors doesn't necessarily mean you need to split your screens with two separate wallpapers. From beautiful to downright weird, here are our top sites for finding the best dual-monitor wallpapers for you.
Social Media

Instagram test reveals direct messages may be coming to browsers

Instagram for the web has always been a minimalist affair compared to the feature-rich smartphone app, but in the last few years that's started to change. The latest news is that Instagram is considering adding direct messages.