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Dyslexia (geon.github.io)
465 points by seonirav 11 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 176 comments

That's not what it's like for me.

I simply can't tell the difference between symbols that have been rotated or reversed. So I made it through an engineering degree with "the alligator eats the bigger number" mnemonics for > and <.

The first thing I do when I get a new dev machine is take a pen and write "\r\n" up above the delete key. I've never gotten the slashes in the right direction on that key sequence from memory even though I type them several times a day (I just had to edit my post after looking it up right now and realizing I'd typed it wrong on my new laptop).

Anything that can be reversed, I reverse roughly 50% of the time. Because to my brain, they're interchangeable.

Pulling and pushing doors is what always gets me. I had a friend I did an interhship with for half a year and he'd always get a kick out of my inability to use doors in work correctly even when it said pull/push on it.

Mixing up my p's and q's, and my b's and d's were a big problem when I was young but I luckily grew out of that since they were considering putting me into remedial education because of it.

I also find I've developed a lot of my own pneumonics. So for > and < I know that the converging side is narrow and therefore it is the lesser side, the divering side is broad and as such is the greater side. Or as someone from the west coast of an island - I figure out east and west by imaging my country knowing that I'm on the west coast.

Funnily enough north/south or up/down don't cause me trouble. It's only things that have vertical symmetry or that can rotate that confuse me.

It's horrible if you're coming from languages such as Portuguese in which "puche" literally means pull!!

Almost 10 years in the states and I still have to think before every single git commit.

Just a small correction. It's not "puche", but "puxe", with X. Both sound the same, but the first one is not correct.

Source: I'm Portuguese.

oh god! I guess that's what 10 years in the states did to me! -ashamed face-

note that "puche" in Portuguese is pronounced exactly like "push" in English.

I thought it was more like "pushy" with the y more of a schwa sound.

So, I am dyslexic too? That's new.

I mean, I thought it was just like the article, but if it's also confounding directions (sometimes I have to think about left and right, I sometimes think that California is on the east coast, I make a mess with clockwise/counterclockwise) then I have that problem too.

> pneumonics

mnemonics :P

I've been diagnosed with dyacalculia and I always have to use a similar trick to the alligator mnemonics to figure out which is "greater than" and "less than". But I think it has more to do with telling left from right, which I also have problems with.

I pretty sure that if someone stopped me away from a computer and asked me to draw a slash and a backslash I'd probably get it wrong.

The cue I learned for that was "the stick man is standing on the line | and leaning forward / or backward \ " (Which is of course western reading direction sensitive)

I always remembered it as, apparently they are both handwritten as an upwards stroke. Assuming western LTR reading direction, it means the slash forward goes forward, and the backslash goes backwards with respect to the reading direction.

I mean, I never really thought about it, but that's how I "know" which is slash forward and which is backslash.

I think that's mostly due to inconsistent terminology, with maybe a sprinkling of windows file paths. I think if most people used sed for a week they'd figure out which one goes between sections and which one escapes characters pretty quickly, even if they didn't know which one was the "back"slash.

the reason for the name of the slashs is: if they'd fall, do they fall forward or backward?

/ forward slash

\ backward slash

For me, “forward” and “backward” are not applicable to the text, because they are in the different plane. Forward-backward vector lies on the line of sight, that's orthogonal to monitor or paper/book.

Second that. Half the time I get directions wrong, whether it's adding/subtracting, multiplying/dividing, up/down, etc. Math was a mess and finance was an absolute nightmare, especially with derivatives.

I actually think as a layman, that people just confuse opposites period. I've actually heard Japanese people say in Japanese, "other left" (context: contest with blindfolded driver getting directions from seeing passenger). So my evidence is that plus other similar occurrences, across cultures. I think some dyslexics may be trying to explain their experiences using something that isn't particularly diagnostic (though they have a real issue, opposites isn't the real issue) Like a heart patient who says "I hate climbing stairs" We all hate climbing stairs.

Any apparent effect on your Tetris skill level?

Interesting question, although there are standards to Tetrimino block coloring.

This is interesting. Is it both rotated or reversed? Because your < > example, and your \ / example, can be defined as either one. So for example:

- Do you have problems disambiguating P and d?

- Do you have problems disambiguating d and b?

Probably just reversed. I always got my J's backwards as a kid, but never upside down.

If I have an external visual queue I can use, I'm good to go. That's what made the >< thing work. I got the intersection/union symbols down because union happens to both look like and start with a U.

Unrelated, but I found that (uni) students find it easier to remember what conCAVE and conVex mean by recalling the shape of an entrance to a 'cave' and the shape of letter 'v'. Visual cues are very useful, even if you do not suffer from dyslexia.

For me it was number 7. I fought with it for a number of years. I went on summer break one year around 8 or 9, came back and all my 7's were backwards again. Thing is I couldn't see it till the teacher pointed it out.

> I made it through an engineering degree with "the alligator eats the bigger number" mnemonics for > and <.

I don't understand this at all. The bigger number is at the bigger end, that's the whole point of the symbols. What does the alligator introduce, apart from an extra step and doubt over whether it's larger or smaller numbers they are said to eat?

>The bigger number is at the bigger end, that's the whole point of the symbols.

It probably has to do with how it was taught. I was never taught "the bigger number is at the bigger end", it was simply "> means greater than and < means less than" and we were supposed to memorize that. The alligator mneumonic is just a way of recovering the original meaning.

It's memorable.

But how is it helpful? You need to know which is the bigger side already in order to place your alligator the right way round.

Reading a scene involving a predator is more firmly wired into our brains than associating a wider distance with a higher number.

> Anything that can be reversed, I reverse roughly 50% of the time

For me, it's any arbitrary, binary, convention. Left and right. Clockwise and counterclockwise. \ and /. Whether time zone offsets are added or subtracted from the UTC time. Interestingly, < and > never gave me a problem, perhaps because I've internalized the alligator mnemonic you mentioned.

Wow, seems like I have dislexia too, some mild form probably, as I often mix up the < and > and arrows etc... Weird I haven't been diagnosed, I remember having much trouble in earlier grades of school having to differentiate b d p q...

Do any of the dyslexia fonts help?

we should note, there are multiple types of dyslexia, each are very different. I am pretty darn dyslexic, and the dyslexic fonts don't help me at all, in fact they make it harder to read. But my issue wasn't really with reading, I have more problems writing.

It sounds like it would be helpful if the symbols we use for writing were unambiguous even if rotated or reversed?

Do you use some special fonts that help with symbols such as > and <, b and d and so on?

Nah, it's not really a big deal. I've never considered it as holding me back or anything. Apart from having to fix the occasional unescaped character in a string, it doesn't have any meaningful effect on my life.

How about not remember right-from-left hand? Not remembering if the hot water is on the right vs left? Switching syllables in longer words? <- all of these are me.

Richard Feynman had to consult a mole on his left hand to remember the difference between left and right.

Hold out your left hand and write "left" in the air using it as the L. After a few years of doing this (maybe two), this fixed the problem for me 99.99% of the time.

I actually have a rather big mark on my left hand and my grandmother taught me to differentiate left and right with that mark on my hand, which I still use as I sometimes get confused. Weird but true.

Once I got tattoos on my forearms it made figure out left and right so much easier.

When I was a kid I once wrote L and R on my forearms with a marker both for remembering which was which and to learn their name in english. I think it worked, because I always think of the corresponding forearm when I have to tell left from right.

I have to refer to the hand I hold a mouse in, before that I used to imagine holding an n64 controller.

For most people, the right hand is the one you write with.

For left-handed people, it's a bit more complicated.

It the one I don't write with...

Not so complicated.

my left hand is the one that makes an L shape. Hands flat, plams down, which index finger + thumb looks like an L? That's your left hand.

that has never worked for me. The hand I automatically pick up a pencil with is the right hand. So I make like I'm holding a pencil and then use that hand.

that is totally what it like for me. However I have not been able to put my finger on it until you just spelt it out just now. other characters such as £$& are a pain to do whilst writing.

does it mix dynamically whole reading, like in the example or is it static like this: "Peoqle like hot bogs."

It's more in the translation step between your vision and your mental image.

If you ever stare at a single word it's never muddled or back to front, but when you scan a sentence and think back over what you have seen words may be in different orders, perhaps based on a typical grouping for those words.

For example if you scanned over your comment, it could come out as, "it does mix dynamical while reading". "It does" and your typo being corrected.

Try staring at a group of 5-6 words quickly, close your eyes, visualize them and read them back.

For me it's like there is a limited buffer, so when I parse a sentence and then read it back in context the start may have become corrupted.

Letters never appear reversed. For me, it's only output that's affected, and touch typing fixes that for text.

woot! I never knew this one. I always see them as little slides, but then forget what means what.

The reading task involves a number of subtasks. If any of these don't work well, it's “dyslexia”. Different dyslexics have different symptoms and experiences depending on what part of the pipeline is affected how. I'm not surprised that a web page designed to simulate one person's experience doesn't match others'.

For an accessible but informative intro-level text, I recommend _Psychology of Reading_, by Rayner, Pollatsek, Ashby, and Clifton. (I took intro grad-level cognitive psychology from Rayner and Pollatsek.) One anecdote I remember from the first edition involved a subject who couldn't perform left-to-right saccades; she was dyslexic in English, but wouldn't have been in Hebrew or Arabic.

This is a good representation of what my dyslexia is like: http://bin.ddai.us/dys/lib/textjumble.png

I describe it like reading through a straw. I can only focus on one word at a time, while most people can take in more words at once. Consequently, my reading speed is much slower than most. Oddly, it hasn't affected my ability to code; I can "see" code just fine.

I'm sure you've come across it, but in case you haven't, have you seen Spritz? http://spritzinc.com/

There is an open-source alternative that you can use as a bookmarklet https://github.com/ds300/jetzt

Oddly, it hasn't affected my ability to code; I can "see" code just fine.

Given the representation, I'm not surprised --- a lot of people, including those non-dyslexic, read code very differently from how they read prose: by focusing on tiny sections at a time. I'd guess that if you tried to read code the way you read prose, by trying to see big chunks of it at a time, you'd quickly experience the same feeling.

> Oddly, it hasn't affected my ability to code; I can "see" code just fine.

Just out of interest, does it change by programming language? I imagine all the "structural support" in most popular programming languages would be helpful, but I know very little about dyslexia...

All languages I've encountered so far seem to be fine. As long as it doesn't require me to linearly read it, I can see things just fine. I haven't encountered one but I would imagine a language with tightly packed syntax would be difficult for me to read efficiently.

So that seems like it would be devastating to your reading comprehension. What can you/did you do to improve?

I haven't done anything to improve. In fact, I only found out I read differently about two years ago; which means I went 30 years not knowing I had anything wrong with me. As for it impacting my reading comprehension, it don't think it has. That being said, there isn't any way for me to know for sure, since I'll never experience what it's like to see text normally. Why do you think it would impact comprehension?

...maybe check if it's "convergence insufficiency".

Thanks for reference, just ordered the 2nd edition.

"Different dyslexics have different symptoms and experiences depending on what part of the pipeline is affected how"

One student that I worked with a couple of years ago talked of the words jumping and changing size on the stark white page. She had lilac coloured paper for handouts &c.

OA has been added to my teacher-training list of pages.

This is close to how it feels when I get a "migraine flash". 2 differences - letters you're not looking at directly (a line or 2 down the page) don't move or jump.

Often, key letters will just completely disappear. In their place is...a kind of grey blank that your mind jumps over. You could swear there's something there, and you can see it when you move your eyes quickly across the word, or out of the corner of your eye when you read the previous or next word, but it disappears when you steady your eyes on that word.

I agree, as a migraine sufferer the vision aspect of migraines often looks like a "heat shimmer" film over everything, and this site resembles that.

> This is close to how it feels when I get a "migraine flash". 2 differences - letters you're not looking at directly (a line or 2 down the page) don't move or jump.

This could be a freaky/fun thing to do as a VR demo.

Or one of the eye tracking kits.

This sounds like scintillating scotoma: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scintillating_scotoma

It doesn't: the GP didn't mention any scintillation.

My aura was similar to their description. I would be reading, and the words before or after the current one would be gone. I figured it was the migraine disrupting the visual processing parts of the brain so much so that the automatic filling in of the blind spot stopped working.

I used to experience weird "I know there's something there but can't see it" (e.g., words, my hand) at particular angles from the center of what I was looking at. It turned out that my blood pressure was so low that I was very near to fainting. It was especially bad on days when I was dehydrated, which was the big clue. Once I started drinking water much more often, the experience hasn't happened again.

I realize there are people experiencing migraines and other painful experiences, but if you have occasional "I can't see right / my head hurts" experiences, consider seeing if drinking a lot more water helps. ;)

I thought the blind spot was out near the periphery of your vision , not near the center

The optic disc is quite close to the macula, which has the most cone-rich area of the retina (the fovea) & is where light is focused by the lens.

That sounds like 'Troxler's Fading'. I get it all the time. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Troxler%27s_fading

It's also related to that optical illusion with the cross and circle, where one seems to vanish when you stare at the other.

I use to have it, then disappeared on its own. This description is really good, I was never able to describe it

This sounds related to unintentional blindness, which is sometimes a result of having some serious brain related issue, such as a stroke.

"migraine flash" might be "potential serious brain issue", I would pay close attention if you've got low/high blood pressures, abnormal blood, obese/anorexic.

Disclaimer: I'm not a medical professional, but I wouldn't play off something like this.

When I was little, they did an MRI and found everything normal. A few years ago, the ER said they thought it was a partial seizure, one that only hits part of the brain, and part is unaffected.

Not sure why I was down-voted, from what you've said and from personal experience (working on support systems for patients of strokes), it seems as though there's reason to believe cause and effect.

Unless brain damage was done, it's quite likely you can train yourself out of this habit by the way. One method I heard that works is to wear an elastic band, whenever you do it twang yourself on the wrist.

While I agree with the other comments that it wasn't impossible to read these letters, I could feel a real strain on my eyes and thought process while reading the page.

I had to "concentrate" in-order to understand each letter, something I don't have to do with normal text. I can't imagine how difficult it would be to constantly have to read everything like that.

Also, while most words were easy to make out, the ones that I don't use in everyday life; like "Typoglycemia" were impossible to figure out. I had to check what it was linked to.

I have some mild dyslexia, and for me the biggest thing is that the letters don't "jump around", they are permanently out of place, or in some cases letters are consistently "added".

I play a videogame where there is a character named "Medivh" (pronounced ma-deev). Even knowing that, even having played that character for over a year, I still read it as med-va.

And a lot of words are like that, I'll be reading along and hit a word like constantly and read it as "consistently" even though it doesn't make sense, then get confused and need to re-read. Or like in your second sentence I read "concrete-trate" and had to reread it to make sense of the word.

Switching letters and words like what you described happens to me occasionally *but not consistently) when I'm really tired or not fully awake yet.

Just wondering - do fonts like https://opendyslexic.org/ make it easier for you to read?

I don't know if openDyslexic works for me, I really don't like the look of the font and haven't really read it long enough to see if it makes a difference.

Is it easier to type with your eyes closed? I guess I don't know if it's the eyes doing things wrong or some language center somewhere in the mind.

Neither really when it comes to typing, just the occasional instance where i get "lost" and end up just typing gibberish and need to go back a sentence or 2.

For me I don't think it's a visual thing, it happens regardless of font, size, or how easy it is to see at the moment.

The way you described "Typoglycemia" is exactly how I see new words. I have really awful vivd memories of having to read Shakespear out loud in English Lit at school during my GCSE years. So many words in that were new or uncommon.

Over the years the words have stopped jumping around less which is nice. However I still look at new words and have absolutely no idea how to pronounce them.

I think my dyslexia is very much routed in how sounds link to the glyphs, when I see a word like Typoglycemia I have to specifically recall from memory the sound that "glyce" make, it's not intuitive to me, it's entirely the fact that I've memorised it and sometimes that can take quite a while to recall.

Everyones is slightly different, my handwriting looks like I've never used a pen before, it's really quite funny sometimes.

Hope that sheds a bit of light on my experiences with it!

Same. And imagine how much harder it would be to build a vocabulary if every time we encountered a new word, you had just as much trouble with it as we just did with "typoglycemia".

I have Dyslexia. It's not like this bullshit. I think this kind of crap propagates more misunderstanding.

What if it is like this, but for different people? A single case of Dyslexia isn't necessarily representative.

I honestly think that dyslexia is a range of undiagnosed conditions. It's nothing like the simulation for me, but it's not the first time I've heard of letters jumping around.

Dyslexia simply means having trouble learning to read. Being diagnosed with dyslexia does not give any indication as to the cause of the dyslexia. The formal definition in the DSM-5 is:

"a pattern of learning difficulties characterized by problems with accurate or fluent word recognition, poor decoding, and poor spelling abilities."

The experience isn't the same, but I think the affect on someone without it would be similar.

In essence, it would take them a lot longer (or at a higher cognitive tax) to intemperate a page of text.

What is it like for you ?

It's for sure different for different people.

I assume I'm Dyslexic (never got tested for various reasons), but I experience what I have in a different way to this. When reading sentences I sometimes read the words in the wrong order, completely changing the meaning of the sentence at times.

The way to describe my experience is that when you read sentences, you are sometimes surprised by what you read because it seems wrong, re-read it and find out that's not what it said at all. The correction I might possibly make on this site would be to have webcam input and change only when your eyes are not looking at something and to make the change more subtle so you're not aware of it in your peripheral vision.

Day-to-day (not big) issues are:

* Having to re-read paragraphs because I read it wrong and therefore failed to understand it. * Coming unstuck in a point I'm making because I failed to read the text correctly. * Some fonts I really cannot read at any speed - basically if it differs too much from very standard computer fonts. * Given up writing lowercase in my own handwriting because I cannot easily read it - the workaround for me was to write completely in capitals. * Generally wanting to avoid reading because of the above issues.


* Able to spot mistakes in large bodies of text really quickly, but equally could be a result of just being a programmer. * Skim reading is easier because I have gotten used to getting words in the wrong order anyway, which almost the same as missing words.

Also, I find it funny that one test for whether you are dreaming is reading sentences in your dream doesn't make sense - I get this anyway :) Proof we are living in the matrix? ;)

Interested to hear if anybody else also experiences this and can even enlighten me a bit.

I also do this. Sometimes it feels like I can't slow myself down and I read too fast, grabbing words, but putting them in the wrong order in my head. Sometimes I also write words out of order, or skip words completely when trying to dictate onto paper.

As a child I had a pretty severe stutter which is not as pronounced now, and the feeling I got from that is the same feeling I get now as an adult with my reading.

I've not experienced the dream one, at least in any way that I can remember. I tend not to dream in general however.

And just like your second bullet point, on several occasions I've approved written material that was quite poor because my brain filled in the blanks with what I thought sounded nice :)

>As a child I had a pretty severe stutter which is not as pronounced now, and the feeling I got from that is the same feeling I get now as an adult with my reading.

I had a pretty bad stutter at one point, not mid-words but just repeating a word out of order over and over. For example, when trying to say "today", I used to say "Day day day today". People would find it funny, but actually I had no control at all. It took years to train myself out of this habit.

>I've not experienced the dream one, at least in any way that I can remember. I tend not to dream in general however.

The dream was a joke :) It's about telling whether you are dreaming or not, the joke being that because of the way I read sentences I couldn't tell anyway.

>And just like your second bullet point, on several occasions I've approved written material that was quite poor because my brain filled in the blanks with what I thought sounded nice :)

This sometimes works in my favour, I'm able to bridge gaps when people don't write enough information. Equally, sometimes when dictating my own ideas I sometimes miss words or entire sentences despite actually thinking them up and going to type them.


* being more polite and kind after you found yourself few times in the middle of "hot" conversation simply because you misread something at the start.

I don't think it is much dyslexia, because this happened to me while in rush to think and make a point instead of reading it and think. I also tend to skip paragraphs or entire pages while reading books, if my mind is busy enough thinking of the last read sentence.

>reading sentences in your dream

Try to raise hands and look at fingers in your dream :)

>* being more polite and kind after you found yourself few times in the middle of "hot" conversation simply because you misread something at the start.

For sure, although being passionate about a topic doesn't seem to hold me back :)

>I don't think it is much dyslexia, because this happened to me while in rush to think and make a point instead of reading it and think. I also tend to skip paragraphs or entire pages while reading books, if my mind is busy enough thinking of the last read sentence.

For me, this happens regardless. Admittedly not all the time, but often enough that people have come to expect it of me.

>Try to raise hands and look at fingers in your dream :)

That sounds like something someone in the Matrix would say ;)

Had no problems reading this even as a non-native speaker. This is similar to the case when you mess around with "inner" letters of the word, but leave first and the last ones in their places (I've read about this experiment 10 years ago maybe). While the word changes - you still able to read it in text (other words are transformed too in this case obviously).

I had no problems reading this as a non-native speaker... until I hit first advanced medical term.

If you know the words, then reading is easy. But I can see how it can seriously disturb the process of learning new or difficult words.

"Dyslexia is characterized by difficulty with LEARNING to read fluently".

You may have read it, but you didn't understand it!

That's the crux of the matter IMO, most people reading this page already learned how to read; the brain takes shortcuts in recognising words (like the garbled inner part of words as another commenter mentioned). But if your brain isn't able to develop those shortcuts (due to dyslexia), yeah. Try teaching a child to read with a page like this.

That's seriously not true for folks with mild dyslexia. That's why folks don't necessarily find out until adults: no actual difficulty learning to read, but sometimes it results in weird things that weren't picked up on when we were kids. Spelling, for example. Getting left and right mixed up. Certain behavioral traits. More trouble with reading as one gets older and has more to read and/or difficult texts.

Funny thing: I keep getting left and right mixed up since I moved from the UK to the US. It's as though my subconscious understanding of "left" was always "the side cars drive on". Flipping that also flipped the words in my head.

That is quite funny. I'm pretty glad I didn't suddenly get that when I switched countries. Of course, I switched up the two before I did so. I learned to feel for my heartbeat on my left side to tell them apart.

Err not all dyslexics have problems with reading I am Dyslexic and had a reading age of 20 at 11 :-) Writing and spelling however I am very bad at

I'm pretty sure that title was changed since the original posting.

The original one was something like: "Try to read it". That's pretty much it.

I had the same experience (also a non-native speaker). Being a non-native speaker might actually help -- when learning English I had to learn to guess meaning of unknown words when reading quickly and I think that skill is still with me (possibly as a detriment).

While I suspect in the end I can understand the dyslexic text just as well as a normal one, reading this required significantly higher concentration and was much slower.

It worked for me until I stumbled upon a word I didn't know: typoglycemia.

It's true that first and last letters are huge hints. With context it makes for a shorter space search.

I have no clue if this works (I have not been diagnosed as dyslexic) but it certainly makes things more readable for me: https://opendyslexic.org/

OpenDyslexic also has more space between letters and words, which makes reading easier for some. But for others, the increased space is too much, and it actually makes it harder.

One other benefit of OpenDyslexic is that it is a very "heavy" font. If you're struggling to read something in Helvetica Neue, switching to any heavier font would make it easier to read.

That's strange !!!

Hi, bit of a shameless plug, but I've been working with my dad and some dyslexia experts for the last 5 years and we have made http://www.unitsofsound.com/

If anyone wants to check it out that would be awesome.

On the subject, my dad and I are dyslexic, and this course (in a different form) has helped immeasurably. We also have a couple of experts on the subject area that I can put anyone in touch with if they have any questions, please reach out info@unitsofsound.com

As far as I know, I don't have dyslexia. I've always been a voracious reader and haven't had the challenges one normally associates with the label.

But now and then - maybe once a month, maybe a few days in a row, some normal, easy, word will look _wrong_.

The letters don't "jump around", but it looks wrong the way a missplelled word does...I end up staring at it and trying to imagine how it SHOULD be spelled. That'd be less weird for me if it was a word with lots of typical english weirdness, like "necessary", but this happens on really _simple_ words, and usually just one word at any moment. Then later, that particular word stops doing it.

In recent history I can recall this happening with: "tree", "the", "matter", and (ironically) "simple", but I've never noticed any pattern to which words do it, and these are words that only do this for a few minutes or hours, then stop. "the" just looked as wrong as "teh" normally looks wrong, and every instance on the page looks like a glaring error until it subsides.

Does anyone know what does this? It's not a notable problem for me - because these are simple words that I have a lot of familiarity with I can just logically override the emotional component, but it still weirds me out. What else can my brain do this with, making something normal and mundane wrong and alien for a brief period?

FWIW, English is my native language.

I think what you're referring to is semantic satiation[1], where you hear or see a word often enough that it becomes essentially gibberish and you can't parse it properly. As far as I know I'm not dyslexic but it happens to me sporadically too, but it generally fixes itself within a few minutes.

1: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semantic_satiation

>and these are words that only do this for a few minutes or hours, then stop

Some neuron died, and it takes a while for the RAID 5 of the mind to rebuild the array.

I'm only half-joking. I know exactly the feeling you're talking about, and it's the just-so reason I came up with to amuse myself. Realistically, it probably a relative of semantic satiation.


I should stop using these cheap parts...

But seriously, thanks. Just knowing my crazy isn't unique is comforting. Plus, any day that I get to see "See also: Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo" as a serious entry in Wikipedia is not a terrible day.

Between this and someone telling me about https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amygdala_hijack I'm starting to feel almost normal.

> There are three proposed cognitive subtypes of dyslexia (auditory, visual and attentional)

In the US, unfortunately, many experts focus exclusively on the phonological aspects of dyslexia (which corresponds to the "auditory" description above). In other parts of the world, the understanding is broader and includes visual aspects also.

It seems that the narrower, U.S.-based conception of dyslexia goes back to some research done at Yale in 1996 [1], which is often summarized as "dyslexia is phonological, not visual". Because Americans have such a high opinion of Yale, educators/experts here like to parrot this sound bite, even if they don't fully understand the research or competing research conclusions. Researchers and experts outside the U.S. have a different view (and IMO are less influenced by a research report from Yale).

I have been especially curious about the visual impacts of dyslexia, because the technology I work [2] on is visual, and according to many people with dyslexia, it is extraordinarily helpful for them. Having heard repeatedly that "dyslexia is not visual", I was curious to know why a visual technology would have a materially beneficial effect for readers with dyslexia.

In conversations with dyslexia researchers, I have learned that there may be second-order effects of dyslexia that are visual — even if the root causes of dyslexia are not visual. Basically, people with dyslexia dislike reading and therefore do not read much. This causes them to lag on a number of reading-related skills, including visual tracking. Since visual aids can improve visual tracking, they can help readers with dyslexia, even if they don't have a type of dyslexia that was originally caused by visual differences.

1: http://dyslexia.yale.edu/Scientific_American_1996.pdf

2: http://www.BeeLineReader.com

That's interesting in the UK I was diagnosed early 70's with dyslexia by my optician - who had an interest in the subject.

Yeah, opticians here in the U.S. would just focus on glasses/contacts. Dyslexia diagnoses here generally comes from school psychologists or literacy specialists. The standards vary — in some places it is very difficult to be diagnosed, and in other places it is very easy.

I had hard times reading this (about 10 times slower than normal text). What does that say about me?

That you tell the truth on the internet. Quite an oddity.


You just might have felt how some dyslectics feel.

I'd consider myself an excellent reader, and a pretty good speed reader. I had a very hard time with this, fast, slow, or otherwise.

For me the "movement" part is basically my mind trying to process 2D object in 3D space. They "jump" because somewhere back there, my mind is trying to show me what the glyph would look like if it was in front of me floating. This is why b and d are hard, etc. Sufficed to say, mine is nothing like this website.

Seeing this, I remember an Indian movie Tare Zameen Par (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taare_Zameen_Par). The film explores the life and imagination of Ishaan, an 8-year-old dyslexic child.

Seeing this helped me gain a real appreciation for the effects of dyslexia that being told how it is hasn't, even if it's not truly accurate to how everyone is affected by it. Seeing this has made me curious about how dyslexia affects non-English/Latin alphabet readers too, e.g. Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Arabic, Thai. Is there someone on here that has dyslexia and reads/writes in these scripts that can explain how it affects them? For example, in Korean do the pieces of each individual phoneme move around in ways that don't make sense, e.g. ㄷㅏㄴ normally is 단 but the ㄷ and ㅏ switch places? Or in Chinese, do the strokes within each character move around, or do the characters simply move positions within the phrase?

I was a reading prodigy (full ability to read adult material before age 3), with astronomical IQ scores to match (higher than what Marilyn vos Savant had in Guinness). Even so, I think I was/am mildly dyslexic.

Clearly, if it's real it's mild, and not much of a disability. Still:

-- It took me several years after I learned to read to stop mixing up letters and their reversed forms (e.g. lower-case b/d). -- I still have to think hard to avoid mixing up east/west in many map-reading situations. -- (Don't know if this is relevant) I always have had great difficulty identifying the direction a sound is coming from.

I also generally have difficulty memorizing visual details, recognizing faces, etc.

Didn't see the point on this post. Then I realised I have JS off.

cf.: https://twitter.com/1990sLinuxUser/status/97350916902105089

Seems like the cure for dyslexia is disabling JS.

I suppose all 2 users with js disabled frequent hn.


haha exactly same here :)

This is like a written version of how I seem to hear other people. Even when actively listening, I frequently hear different words (whatever my brain wants to hear or is predicting it heard, perhaps) which I question and generally find I heard wrong.

Have you had your hearing checked? This can be a side effect of your brain attempting to make up for hearing loss.

I'm going to be doing that, yes, as I'm not getting any younger :-D

I have relatively mild symptoms of dyslexia, they obviously don't present like this. The real problems came when I tried to connect letters and words with sounds. Once that came it was easy to read, and has been ever since. I barely even remember struggling with reading, but spelling and pronunciation has always been a ordeal.

My symptoms only present themselves during production or consumption. I have no confusion between left and right in my head, I rarely get them mixed up. But it took me forever to be able to tell people which word connected to which side.

I'm mildly dyslexic. I sometimes read words incorrectly - so for example a local hill is called "Butser", but I frequently will read "Buster" as I drive past. So I find I read slowly aloud, because I need to process the text before I can speak it. It doesn't happen frequently anymore, but I do still get it. It's amazingly frustrating.

Weirdest thing - I can read that website pretty easily. I can see the words. I think it's because I look for more markers than just the word shape when I read. I don't know. How do others find it?

Previous discussion: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11218677 (1.5 years ago, 200 comments)

I'm dyslexic and built a tool to solve this issue for me: https://getspeechify.com/ basically it lets your computer read out any text to you super easily. Even if letters are hard to decode visually, they are easy to listen to. And it takes very little time to build up the ability to listen super fast so I listen between 500 and 600 words per minute.

Pretty cool to see that the the scripts are no exception. If you look at the script tags within the inspect the code is also being reordered

If you are Dyslexic and an Entrapunuer and live in the bay area, consider joining NED the Dyslexic Entrapunuer Network. See denlaunch.com

I really enjoyed meeting a bunch of other dyslexic folks and I'd never really met any others. Bets part of a NED meeting is no one will ask you to take notes :)

After a few years of reading many people recognize words in their entirety, not as individual letters. They note the length, parts with upward extenders such as bdhk, descenders like gjp and rounded parts etc. This is akin to reading ideographs. I wonder how this interacts with dyslexia?

I recently learned of a related condition, called dyscalculia, which is to mathematics as dyslexia is to reading: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dyscalculia

This is not real or true.

I have dyslexia and have never seen text like that.

I have no trouble seeing letters or words, I just can't associate the sounds with the letters, so I can't spell or read new words (based on the sounds).

I've dealt with it by remembering tons of words.

Lovely. I love to see how the brain can manage going through "hurdles". Gives insight in how our brains handle parsing. Very nice.

Also: it tames my pseudo ADHD and helps me focus a lot. I'm tempted to have this for all text.

What is "pseudo ADHD"?

Being overly impatient, but not to the point of being clinically diagnosed so, it's just a quick way to describe it.

Is there a standard test for dyslexia? Are there any proven methods by which to address these learning to read difficulties? As dyslexics, did you feel that having the label helped you or hurt you as a young person?

I've got this book reading app with AI assistant. I wonder if it'll help with dyslexia. Would love to hear from others.


this example is extremely over generalized. Dyslexia comes in different forms and can manifest through a varience in ability on a scale of things, including math ability, remembering a sequence of numbers backwards etc. not everyone who is dyslexic has impairments with regards to seeing symbols order reading. I'm diagnosed as dyslexic but don't experience any of what's described here.

I'd be interested in seeing is how syllable splits (for ex·am·ple, with mid·dots like this) affect reading comprehension for dyslexics.

It's actually quite easy to read such scrambled words, unless they are some uncommon technical term that I've never seen before.

Imagine as a child or if you were previously illiterate, every single one of those words will be an uncommon term - so it makes it much harder to learn to read words in this way.

Ding ding ding. Too many people quick to boast how they had no trouble reading this yet they completely missed the 1st (major!) point of the text: "Dyslexia is characterized by difficulty with LEARNING to read fluently"

It seems to me that since fluent readers can still read this dyslexic text, that it's not that our brains can't learn to read it, but that we suck at teaching how to read to people with dyslexia.

This really makes the point. Perhaps exploring different pathways would help. Braille? Audio? Different colors or fonts?

The comments are GOLDEN!

Read the back-and-forth about the definition of bravery, from “Ben Tarr” and the rest of the commenters.

It just keeps going and going and everyone gets more and more abusive

If you look at that users other comments it's pretty clear he's a quite shallow troll; he has a cut-and-paste inflammatory line that he comments in a lot of threads.

Does dyslexia mean the letters are jumbled or is it just a difficulty reading fast and and poor comprehension?

I have always imagined that dyslexia feels somewhat like mild dose of LSD. It's hard to describe, but the letters usually seem to move around (especially in peripheral vision) and one has to focus mostly on individual symbols making up a word instead of the usual words-magically-appearing-in-brain stuff.

Not an accurate feeling of reading, but the general idea is about accurate.

I wonder how dyslexia affects people from non-english speaking world.

I wonder how it affects people from China and other non-alphabet-using countries.

That was really good, can you please explain how did you do it?

Not the author, but you can find sources following the link: https://github.com/geon/geon.github.com/blob/master/_posts/2...

Basically - you leave first and last letters of the word where they are, and mix all other characters randomly at random times.

Just use "View Source" (Ctrl/Cmd + U) in your browser, the source is clear and not minified. Look for "messUpWords".

It's pretty funny to use the dom inspector in Chrome, since the effect works on the script source code as well.

lol, doesn't seem to hard. Words are still easily readable with the middle letters mixed up.

didn't have too much difficultly, but now all the letters on every page are swimming.

I wonder if that page looks normal to dyslexic

No, actually it's very different from my personal experience as dyslexic

Someone asked me if the algorithm could be reversed to make text more readable.

Able rightly, etc.

It was not actually as hard as the author had probably thought. Relevant?[0]


There is a link to the wikipedia article about the phenomenon. Unfortunately, it seems to be butchered to oblivion atm. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Typoglycemia&oldi...

It's not hard when you have a context and assume the proper readings of the word. Dyslexia makes it hard to establish the background of what a word should be, so no emulation will be perfect.

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