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8 speed reading apps that can slash your reading time

Speed reading apps have replaced expensive programs that chain you to a series of exercises, rather helps you to improve your reading skills with content you’re already planning on reading.

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speed reading apps

Speed reading apps help to speed you up

As we all consume more and more information every day, speed reading has become an extremely helpful tool in many busy professionals’ lives. Using mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, various apps have emerged to meet the need.

Below are eight speed reading apps, some for iOS, others for Windows, Android, and even the web. Some of these apps are trainers with exercises, others use the content you’re already reading, some are free, and others cost a few dollars.

1. Spreed (for the web)

spreed
Spreed
is designed to allow you to copy and paste any text into your browser, and keyboard commands allow you to speed up and slow down the pace as it presents one word at a time, a very popular method of speed reading, allowing your brain to minimize distractions.

2. ReadQuick (for iOS)

readquick
If you can get past your sensitivities about the name (grammar nerds know what we mean), ReadQuick is useful in that you can pull in stories from both Instapaper and Pocket where you’ve bookmarked them, and set the pace at which you’d like to zip through them.

3. Speed Reader (for Android)

speed reader
Speed Reader
uses a method called Rapid Serial Visual Presentation, encouraging you to view the center of the screen without saying the words in your head. What sets this app apart is support for most file formats including .txt, .pdf, .html and others, so it’s not just news you can learn to speed read, it can be your documents or manuals you have to get through.

4. Fastr (for iOS)

fastr
Faster
is an ebook reader with speed reading tools, allowing you to track your progress, highlight and share text, and gives you control over the number of words to display on the screen.

5. Speed Reading (for Windows 8)

speed reading
Speed Reading
is available for Windows 8 devices (desktop, tablet, or smartphone) for free and offers exercises to improve your word speed. The app also keeps track of your progress with improving your speed as you go along.

6. Velocity (for iOS)

velocity
Velocity
is one of the most popular options, the tech world’s current speed reading darling, and while it is not free, it has one of the most attractive user interfaces and requires no tech savviness to use. Pull in articles from your Pocket, Instapaper, or browser and adjust the speed, either in black and white or white and black.

7. Speed Reading Trainer (for Android)

speed reading trainer
Speed Reading Trainer
offers a diagnostic tool for progress checks and comes with reading materials to practice with so you can improve your comprehension levels while speeding up your reading.

8. QuickReader (for iOS)

speedreading
Quick Reader
isn’t the sexiest app on the planet, but it is extremely well rated with hundreds of reviewers claiming their reading speeds improved, and more than doubled in many cases. Like some of the others, it tracks progress and comes with access to millions of books.

The American Genius (AG) is news, insights, tools, and inspiration for business owners and professionals. AG condenses information on technology, business, social media, startups, economics and more, so you don’t have to.

Tech News

How to buy Internet of Things gifts this year with security in mind

(TECHNOLOGY) Internet of Things devices are neat, but they also pose a significant security risk if not properly implemented. Here’s how to buy IoT gifts that won’t ruin your friend’s Xbox Live.

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As smart technology becomes more and more relevant, the issue of cybersecurity increases in pertinence as well. If you plan on picking up smart home (Internet of Things) gifts for your family and friends this year, Next Advisor offers a few security tips to keep in mind:

Firstly, the difference between “always on” items and selectively on appliances is huge, as smart home “always on” items pose a much more significant security risk than a device that can be disabled with the press of a button. Things like smart lights, thermostats, speakers, and so on—while popular—are best left to your recipient’s discretion.

This is because “always on” (also known as “Internet of Things”, or IoT) devices are often ill-suited to the degree of connectivity that they must sustain. Due to security shortcuts or weak coding, it’s relatively easy for an attacker to use your Internet-connected refrigerator or thermostat to take down your whole network. As such, traditional devices that can be enabled and disabled at will have a distinct security edge in this area.

When in doubt, go the gift card route; that way, your intended recipient will be able to purchase whatever smart item they want without you having to worry about compromising their safety.

If you do decide to buy Internet of Things gifts this year, it’s important to invest in strong, secure options. The easiest way to ensure that the device that you’re buying is sufficient is by looking at the manufacturer: was the device produced by Google, Intel, Apple, or another household tech name, or are you considering a company that you’ve never heard of?

A less security-based issue lies in the quality of the products, as third-party devices tend to fail faster and achieve less support than ones from large tech companies. When in doubt, go with the devil you know.

The other main thing to keep in mind is the face security of the item itself.

If the IoT item has a password and regular update support, it’s a much more secure item than any device lacking either of those features (to say nothing of both). Make sure that you know the answers to these questions before investing in any IoT device this holiday season, or just avoid them altogether.

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Chatbot recruits qualified candidates, schedules interviews

(TECH NEWS) No chatbot can replace humans, but like this one, there is great potential to streamline paper pushing.

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applyr chatbot

When I was younger, the coolest technology at the time was AOL Instant Messenger (AIM). Us teens and tweens would sit at our desk tops for hours, having pointless conversations with the same people we had seen all day long at school.

Every once in a while, the stars would un-align and there would be no buddies to talk to. This is when we would get desperate and strike up a conversation with SmarterChild, an AIM chatbot.

For us millennials, this was our first introduction to a chatbot, which is now a concept that has taken on a (virtual) life of its own. They now exist on many different websites, particularly ones with customer service, and are designed to have, basically, all of the answers.

Now as we get ready to jump into 2018, we see that this technology has advanced enough to the point where there are chatbots that serve as pre-recruiting tools for employers. One of these chatbots can be found on Applyr.

“Applyr is designed to be the most human recruitment tool. Our recruiter chatbots ‘sit’ on a company’s careers page and engage with, pre-select, and schedule interviews with candidates,” according to developers.

“This represents a radical improvement in the candidate experience, whilst saving the hiring company and the recruiter huge amounts of time. The more interactions Applyr chatbots engage in, the more our platform learns from the data it measures. Which further serves to improve recruiting processes.”

These recruiter chatbots are designed to help employers weed through candidates without consuming their precious time. The bots are customizable and scalable solution to your recruitment overload. Applyr states that they bring the power of Artificial Intelligence to the top of your recruitment funnel.

It is a fully comprehensive solution for global recruitment teams that includes: ATS integration, low-risk and GDPR compliance, security and confidentiality, international and multilingual capabilities, simple integration, and equal opportunities.

Applyr chatbots find qualified candidates through use of the AI-powered software. It then auto schedules the first interview and provides detailed analytics.

This way, more time can be spent on the interview itself and less time on arranging it. Applyr is no replacement for a human, but it can certainly speed up the process of getting to the best candidate.

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Tech News

The new best time of day to post on Facebook

(TECHNOLOGY) There has long been a “universal” sweet spot for when to post on Facebook, so what is it now?

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The best time to post on Facebook is a hotly contested topic, with some experts claiming to have the end-all-be-all answer while others admit that it isn’t an exact science.

While the best time to post for your demographic will ultimately depend on that demographic’s habits, regional location, and more, AI machine learning may ultimately provide the answer that you’ve been looking for.

To assume that there’s a universal “best time” to post on Facebook is a bit contrived, given the dynamic nature of people and their various nuances; however, there is almost certainly a best time for you to post to your followers. This time will depend on a myriad of different factors, which is why you shouldn’t have to calculate it yourself.

There are plenty of social media analysis tools available, one of the popular options is Socialbakers which offers a comprehensive suite that you can try for 14 days to see if it even works for you. The idea is that the suite will analyze your posts’ traffic, giving you a day-by-day report on when is the best time for you to post to your audience.

This dynamic approach allows you to target specifically the most active section of your audience without having to guess or account for outliers (e.g., holidays) by giving you an exact (often down to the minute) time at which your posts should go out for your selected day. The suite also learns as it is used, meaning that your posting hours will only improve in accuracy with time.

While experts are still throwing out best posting time estimates like between 1:00 and 4:00 on weekdays, the fact remains that the optimal posting solution for you most likely doesn’t always fall during this vanilla time frame—and even if it does, the exact time will always net more views and engagement than tossing a post into the void of the Internet during a three-hour window.

The bottom line is this: your social media game may be fine, but knowing the exact time of day on which to post – a luxury afforded only by an AI suite – is the only way to post reliably during your audience’s sweet spot.

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