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Friday, March 7, 2008

Reading Level

Googling for something else, I found this link which purports to gauge the readability of your blog. It comes with a nifty piece of code that you can use to embed it in your page as well, and I was highly flattered when it tagged my blog as being in the 'College Post-Grad' level. What marvels of prose made it adjudge my blog to be worthy of that honor, I wondered. More importantly, was it my deathless prose, or my ease of using French phrases or poetry quotes?
What was the algorithm behind this rating?

I started checking out all my favorite blogs and came up with a bunch of mixed results: Some that I rated very highly came up with 'High School', while others such as 'rushlimbaugh.com', 'microsoft.com', 'google.com' came up with 'Genius'. Could this be a sort of negative rating , meaning the higher you score, the more meaningless the result?

There are, fortunately, more reputable ways to check on the readability index, as this suite of tests provided by Juicystudio. The disclaimer for the interpretation states:

This service analyses the readability of all rendered content. Unfortunately, this will include navigation items, and other short items of content that do not make up the part of the page that is intended to be the subject of the readability test. These items are likely to skew the results. The difference will be minimal in situations where the copy content is much larger than the navigation items, but documents with little content but lots of navigation items will return results that aren't correct.


It's a relief to know that Rush Limbaugh is less likely to be a genius, and just has a lot of navigation items on his page that have skewed the results to show up as 'Genius'.

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