Idea: Reading statistics

As a former tab-junkie I owe most of my rehabilitation to Read It Later. I had a habit of leaving interesting articles open in new tabs, because if I put them in bookmarks it would just grow into a mess. Shortly after I bought my Amazon Kindle I started to look into how I could get those articles into it. I found Instapaper, which could have online articles sent to my Kindle on a daily basis. But that wasn’t the revelation I hoped for.

It became a bit too like mini-books and I like to read the articles I’m in the mood for at the moment. Also the articles I pick have too many graphs and images in it to be good on the Kindle. Watching TED Talks was out of the question. Then I found ReadItLater, and it’s iPhone app. The color screen, short reading time, and nicer user interface for managing articles made it a perfect fit.

Given my interest in Agile and Lean I started wondering what my lead and cycle times for my articles were. Luckily, Read It Later has an API. My thought is to track when new articles are added, when reading begins, and when they’re done. Not only could you do an unnecessary Kanban-board, you could even estimate when you’ll actually be done with all your articles. Although what interests me the most is a burn-down-chart inspired visualization showing when you’re adding articles way faster than you’re reading, meaning things are getting out of control and need some action taken.

Of course, you could compare your stats to your friends…

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