Posted on Monday, November 25th, 2013 by Will Hagle
Blinkist is a website and corresponding mobile app that provides access to a massive library of short, easily readable passages from non-fiction books.
Blinkist understands that, despite the massive wealth of knowledge available on the internet, there is still tons of information “hidden in books,” as they put it. Millions of books are published each year, and most of them remain unread by the majority of the population, simply because it would be too expensive and difficult for every individual to read every single book. Blinkist also understands that most people don’t have the time to sit down and read entire books anymore. They read snippets on the subway, a few chapters while waiting for friends or riding around in cars. The site takes advantage of both the knowledge embedded in physical books and the technology available online, creating a site that allows users to read important passages from non-fiction books in short time spans while on the go, all from a web browser or mobile device.
Blinkist describes these short passages from lengthier works as “blinks.” Each blink takes an average of about two minutes to read, and it provides valuable knowledge about a unique topic. The idea is that these blinks will inspire further investigation into the topic, while presenting a wide range of subjects to choose from without having to front the cost for an entire book. For 30 days, in fact, you wont have to front any cost at all to use Blinkist. The way the site works is simple yet quickly addicting. When you click on a blink, the site presents a short synopsis as well as the average length of time that the passage takes to read. Blinkist also explains “Who should read it.” For Richard Dawkins’ The Greatest Show On Earth, for instance, Blinkist suggests “Students of biology” and “those who want to understand how life on Earth developed” should read the blink. There’s also a description of the author. When you click on the passage, you’re presented with an actual excerpt from the book, curated by the folks at Blinkist. The site also features categories and collections to help you more easily discover great content, but most of the blinks on the site are worth reading. You never know what you’re going to learn.