Can somebody explain read.io to me?

Am I missing the point, or is it kind of … ummm … well, stupid?

It is not live yet, so I have not seen it and might be missing an important detail. As I understand it, you sign up and it takes entries from the feed of your blog and converts them into synthetic speech for others to download.

Here is a sample

I can see why that might be fun once, but except for your blind blog readers, I cannot see why it is a good thing. Even if you have a significant number of blind readers, they presumably already have screen reading software which is doing the conversion at the client end where it should be being done. Who would rather download a 5Mb MP3 file than a 5 Kb html file?

I could kind of see some value in it if you could use it as an aggregator, grabbing new entries from a bunch of blogs that you read regularly and filling your MP3 player with them overnight so you could listen to them on the way to work. I still think the conversion should be done at the client end, but at least I could see a point to it. I don’t see why offering your readers the opportunity to download a stilted, machine converted podcast of your writings would have more than novelty value.

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