Feature request: Estimated time to read

chrisvasqm profile image Christian Vasquez Jan 12, 2018

Before dev.to, I used to read a lot of Medium posts and having the estimated time to read available both inside and on the preview of a post was really handy.

  • This can allow people to schedule their time so they can go ahead and read something really quick while they wait for something else while working/taking a cab/train.
  • Enhance the Reading List since they can quickly organize and check which post might need more attention based on how long it would take to read them. "Oh I'll read this one later before going to bed, oh! this is just 2 mins, I can do that on lunch".

I actually dislike such features as it tends to punish authors that write longer articles. Something like 15 minutes to read can dissuade somebody from even reading the opening paragraph, yet it might be the best thing they've ever seen!

Why can't one just start reading the article, and if they run out of time bookmark it for later?

"Something like 15 minutes to read can dissuade somebody from even reading the opening paragraph, yet it might be the best thing they've ever seen!"

I understand your point of view, but that can also be said when they open up the article and see how small the scroll bar gets on the right hand side. They might scroll down a little and watch how little the bar moves and say "oh hell no!" and then leave πŸ˜‚

And, at least in my case, whenever I'm stopped while reading an article and I'm forced to continue it later, I end up re-reading it because I would lose track of where I was or some of the details of the story.

Having the information about how long this might take would allow me to take a better decision of "can I commit to this for the next XYZ minutes of my day?". You would give the user the power to choose.

I kind of agree with this. I remember the other day I started reading some interasting post about a history of someone had related to bitcoins. I started reading it without even caring about how big could it be, I thought it couldn't be that long. I ended up having a 40 minute read and I'm sure that if I've knew how long it was before I probably never read it.

Maybe a better option is a position/progress bookmark instead. It would allow people to stop and start where they left off.

I think it seems pointless because there is too much variation in how fast people read, so all it really becomes is an abstracted word count. Since this a more blog style website, I don't think many people check in with so little time that they wouldn't be able to read what they clicked on.