I cnduo’t bvleiee taht I culod aulaclty uesdtannrd waht I was rdnaieg. Unisg the icndeblire pweor of the hmuan mnid, aocdcrnig to rseecrah at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno’t mttaer in waht oderr the lterets in a wrod are, the olny irpoamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rhgit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it whoutit a pboerlm. Tihs is bucseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey ltteer by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.
Aaznmig, huh? Yaeh and I awlyas tghhuot slelinpg was ipmorantt!
See if yuor fdreins can raed tihs too.
Perhaps you’ve seen this funny little piece of scrambled up text before somewhere. Even though the words are all scrambled you can still easily read it and not only that the text also cleverly explains why you and most English speakers will be able to comprehend these sentences.
Ubvleivalbe! Well, yes it is a little…
Firstly, whether there was any actual research conducted in Cambridge remains to been seen and secondly it’s explanation isn’t entirely true…
The real truth is it’s all about context.
When we read, we extract a lot of information from the overall context, so naturally understanding several words in a sentence can help us guess another one. We also scan words and pick out markers that make them easy to identify, such as certain letter combinations and sounds. Furthermore the way the words were rearranged in the passage above makes them fairly easy to read.
The scrambled text which was first circulated on the internet in September 2003, adhere’s to just one simple rule: The olny irpoamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rhgit pclae.
All these elements make it easier to infer the word even when the letters are not in perfect order. You might note that in the passage above, many of the words markers were maintained. For example, In Cambridge (Cmabrigde) the second half of the word, “bridge,” was very nearly maintained. Changing the scramble to break up “bridge,” as in Cgmiadrbe, makes it much harder to read.
The word According in the passage above was scrambled to Aoccdrnig, but a harder scramble would be Aricdocng.
Or take University in the passage above it was scrambled to Uinervtisy, again a harder scramble would be Utersivniy.
So now if you take a more truer word scrabble as in the sentence below, it should be a little more harder to read:
The seignr has amtietdd to the crhgae of benig uendr teh ilnecuefn of allooch adn dusrg wislht dvinirg.
The unscrambled text should read:
The singer has admitted to the charge of being under the influence of drugs and alcohol whilst driving.
However there is one thing the author of this scrambled text is essentially correct about… Remember the part that says:
“Tihs is bucseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey ltteer by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.”
This is true and not only does this give us a very interesting insight into how our brains work but more importantly it also show’s how we can use that information to begin to increase our reading speed, by increasing the words per minute (wpm) we can read.
When you do this you will begin to understand that just as you don’t need to read every letter on the page you also don’t need to say every word in your head (subvocalisation) and this will allow you to read a lot faster. Resulting in Doubling, tripling or even Quadrupling your Wpm..!
To find out more about this check out my article on this blog: Quadruple your reading speed.. Really?
Until next time,
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