Monthly Archives: December 2011

Getting into Reading Mode

I have always found it hard to read a lot of content online. There are numerous reasons for this: poor layout design, bad typography and a lack on concentration on my behalf.

It is clear that this is a problem not unique to me. There have been many attempts made to make the experience a better one. From Safari’s built in Reader mode to Readability, designed to ‘zap online clutter and save web articles in a comfortable reading view’.

Focus Mode

The purpose of these systems is to remove the other distractions of adverts, additional links or related stories. At a much deeper level, Information Architects understood this whilst building their iA Writer they created what they called Focus Mode:

Thought goes into writing, not using: Focus mode allows you to think, spell and write one sentence at a time. This lowers the temptation to cross edit and keeps you in the flow.

I like the idea of keeping people ‘in the flow’ and so created a very quick mockup of a ‘focus mode’ for reading posts, not just writing them.

This could be made into a JS snippet, or as an idea for someone to use on their own site.

Because the script uses :hover this wouldn’t currently work on a phone, but I’m open to suggestions.