for years and even perhaps for two decades now i have used downloader programs/apps for video and audio material to go through the information faster, with the apps/programs allowing to speed up the playback. twenty years ago it seemed almost impossible to listen condensed information at x2 speed while x1.5 was acceptable to understand. only some very slow talk made sense after speeding up two times.
now, after years of practice, x3 is already comprehensible, and in rare cases even x4, but on the limit of understanding while missing many words. x4 i only use for practice when the content of the material is already known in general and needs to be reminded/recalled, or when the material is boring and while waiting for the interesting parts, to slow down a bit to listen carefully.
an interesting thing here is — the whole point of the article — that the brain is now capable to easily understand and process the content in x2 and 2.5 of regular speed in any language which i know, not only english in which is the bulk of the material i study. i am fluent in english, french, italian, spanish, russian and estonian. recently i discovered that even in portuguese i rather listen x2,5 or x3 because x1 is way too slow for my brain, even though i am not fluent in portuguese — i can understand it but not to speak yet in any degree, even basic.
thus, it appears to me that speeding up the playback of video and audio material isn’t training the skills of understanding of a specific language but the general speed of processing of information by brain.
if the practice will also speed up the general reaction and processing time in other areas, not only in auditory and visual areas of the brain, is yet to be discovered. sometimes i do feel like the world around me is moving too slow and i could do lot more, only if not restrained physically with the limitations of my body. as the result, i obviously enjoy working more inside my brain than extending my skills to physical surrounding. whenever i need to take care of the physical tasks i keep working in parallel, inside my brain, on other topics which are not direcly related to the physical tasks.
sometimes it is a challenge because certain physical tasks need attention, but that’s what makes the life truly interesting and enjoyable — i don’t need to be bored with daily tasks but can live a parallel life inside my brain, be it even just meditation.