Reading Points

Percentage read, reading time & points

by Read Write Tools
Abstract
The rwt-reading-points web component provides site visitors with a clue about a document's reading-level, using a descriptive learning level and experience points system.

Motivation

When user's browse technical documentation it's not always easy to know if a page is meant for first timers or advanced users. This web component provides that information using an ephemeral notification-style text block.

As the user reads, a timer tracks how many seconds is spent reading. As the user scrolls down, the readers progress (as percent read) is tracked. This information is saved to the user's local storage for use with the rwt-reading-summary web component.

Prerequisites

The rwt-reading-points web component works in any browser that supports modern W3C standards. Templates are written using BLUEPHRASE notation, which can be compiled into HTML using the free Read Write View desktop app. It has no other prerequisites. Distribution and installation are done with either NPM or via Github.

Installation using NPM

If you are familiar with Node.js and the package.json file, you'll be comfortable installing the component just using this command:

npm install rwt-reading-points

If you are a front-end Web developer with no prior experience with NPM, follow these general steps:

  • Install Node.js/NPM on your development computer.
  • Create a package.json file in the root of your web project using the command:
  • npm init
  • Download and install the web component using the command:
  • npm install rwt-reading-points

Important note: This web component uses Node.js and NPM and package.json as a convenient distribution and installation mechanism. The web component itself does not need them.

Installation using Github

If you are more comfortable using Github for installation, follow these steps:

  • Create a directory node_modules in the root of your web project.
  • Clone the rwt-reading-points web component into it using the command:
  • git clone https://github.com/readwritetools/rwt-reading-points.git

Using the web component

After installation, you need to add two things to your HTML page to make use of it.

  • Add a script tag to load the component's rwt-reading-points.js file:
  • <script src='/node_modules/rwt-reading-points/rwt-reading-points.js' type=module></script>             
  • Add the component tag anywhere on the page. The actual placement on the page will be determined using JavaScript.
    • For scripting purposes, apply an id attribute.
    • Provide a value for the number of experience points the visitor will gain by reading the document, using the data-points attribute.
    • Provide an assessment of the reading difficulty using the data-time attribute, using descriptions such as: Simple, Moderate, Difficult, Challenging, etc.
    • Provide an estimate of the reading time, in seconds, using the data-time attribute.
    • Provide a descriptive word to catagorize the document, using the data-category attribute.
    <rwt-reading-points id=reading-points data-time='190' data-points='4' data-level='Moderate' data-category='Phrasing'></rwt-reading-points>             

Initially the component is hidden. It appears soon after the page first loads. It fades away after a few seconds.

The position of the text block is always immediately after the document element with the identifier objectives. You should style your page to provide a small amount of whitespace in that area using margin-bottom or something similar. The component itself is designed so that it does not occupy space.

The user's reading time is tracked by movement of the scroll bar placed on the document's outermost frame, which should be identified as frame.

If the page does not have either the objectives element or the frame element, the component will be disabled. This is intentional, as it allows a generic template to be used for a website.

If the data-time attribute is zero or the data-points attribute is zero, the component will also be disabled.

Dialog size and appearance

The slide-in text panel is sized using four CSS variables, which may be overridden with new values, for example:

rwt-reading-points {
--font-size: 0.8rem;
--panel-width: 12rem;
--panel-height: 3rem;
--panel-destination: 6rem;
}

Color scheme

The default color palette for the panel can be overridden as well, for example:

rwt-reading-points {
--color: #333;
--background: #ddd;
--accent-color1: #00c;
}

Internals

The visitor's reading time and experience points are stored in local-storage under the key favorite-data.

License

The rwt-reading-points web component is licensed under the MIT License.

MIT License

Copyright © 2020 Read Write Tools.

Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:

The above copyright notice and this permission notice shall be included in all copies or substantial portions of the Software.

THE SOFTWARE IS PROVIDED "AS IS", WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE AND NONINFRINGEMENT. IN NO EVENT SHALL THE AUTHORS OR COPYRIGHT HOLDERS BE LIABLE FOR ANY CLAIM, DAMAGES OR OTHER LIABILITY, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, TORT OR OTHERWISE, ARISING FROM, OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE SOFTWARE OR THE USE OR OTHER DEALINGS IN THE SOFTWARE.

Availability

Source code github
Package installation NPM
Documentation Read Write Hub

Reading Points — Percentage read, reading time & points

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