Textise is a new way of looking at the Web. It’s an Internet tool that removes everything from a web page except for its text.
In practice, this means that images, forms, scripts, pretty fonts, they all go, leaving plain text. What’s really cool, though, is that links are retained, although these are no ordinary links: click one and you’re transported to another text-only page, and that page leads to another, and another, and another… You stay in Textise’s world until you click the “Back To Original Page” link.
Because forms are removed by Textise, you might think that searching isn’t possible. Well, think again – the Textise home page allows you to search using a variety of popular search engines (Bing, Google and Yahoo) and display the results in a text-only format. Plus, Textise can optionally display a search box on some sites (BBC, Metacritric, YouTube and many others – see this blog post for the full list).
Textise has many uses –
- It can improve accessibility for the blind and partially-sighted.
- It creates pages that are better for printing when it’s just the words you’re after.
- It allows safer navigation to suspicious web-sites.
- It can make cluttered pages easier to read.
- It can show you what a search engine sees when it scans a web page – great for SEO!
- It can show you what a screen reader sees when it processes a web page – great for ensuring accessibility!
- It can help with web research.
- It can help web developers add maintenance-free text only links to their web sites. See the For Web Developers page for more details.
If you discover new uses for Textise, please let us know by adding a comment to this page.
Textise works in real time, meaning that it produces a text-only version of the very latest version of a web page. Unlike other solutions, it does not require costly intervention every time the layout of a page is changed.
Note that Textise does have some limitations:
- You can’t use Textise to visit sites that require you to log in, e.g. Facebook.
- You can’t use Textise to buy stuff from e-commerce sites, e.g. Amazon (but you can browse their stores).
Although there’s evidence that offering text only pages can help to make your web site more accessible, we can’t guarantee that the use of Textise will necessarily bring your site up to your government’s legal accessibility standards.
Terms of Service
We reserve the right to block certain URLs. Reasons for this might be:
– The site is using Textise to offer text-only functionality but does not have permission from us or an active subscription.
– The site contains offensive material, for example sexual, ethical or political.
40 thoughts on “About Textise”
great website…been a absolute lifesaver for me today.
There is a problem with my router – losing roughly 80% of packets sent to it. My current speed is 2.5kpbs, but can still view sites thanks to this site!
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Im excited to give this a try. I think this is a great idea, especially considering the number of people who are stuck with dial up or data limited connections or are just tired of internet clutter. Ive been looking for a browser (and had the bright idea to search for an addon) that is text only. The option i previously found was Lynx. Tried it. Its not easy to operate unfortunately. Lynx is a text only browser, but it is also a browser for computers that were created like pre-1990, with no disambiguation between those concepts. The people developing Lynx actively are the type of people who mostly care about making a 1985 computer operate in todays environment, not, wow, we could apply yesterday’s concepts to today’s technology and really be living well.
My suggestion is that pictures and videos not load automatically but be available. I was thinking that the big obstacle for a text only browser is the coding format (im no expert). Since coding is somewhat non-standard, how do you get a browser to basically take any bit of code random users can generate to create a page and turn it into an aesthetically pleasing, clean, text only experience. Essentially, Lynx SHOULD be a browser that formats all webpages to display in clean, text only, the Apple of browsers. Pictures and video served only on demand. Everything else, specifically when it comes to user interface should at minimum be scalable to be a modern 21st century browser, which Lynx regrettably is not.
Those are just some thoughts from an email. I hope Textise will be the solution im looking for.
I can’t see how this is an advantage over Lynx.
Textise allows quick flipping between “normal” and text-only views. I don’t think this is possible in Lynx.
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Happily, I just discovered Textise — I often have to do web research in a slow dial-up environment (24kbps) & Textise should save me lots of agony. Thanks!
Hi Mike – glad to have you with us! Let me know how it goes.
I was looking for a search engine which would not display images in its results – and this does the job! Well done!
Thanks Alex. Glad you found Textise useful. Happy New Year!
I’ve been looking for this text-only function since I’m using broadband with caps. Can you develop the same extension for Chrome? Thanks
The Textise bookmarklet will do the job in Chrome. Just drag it onto your bookmarks toolbar and it will happily act as a toggle for flipping in and out of text only mode.
Another great use – allow reading the content of webpages that are pretty much broken otherwise (e.g. https://developer.apple.com/library/mac/documentation/DeveloperTools/Conceptual/MachORuntime/ – most of the expand-o-links don’t work)
A great use I found out about this site was using it as a way to pass firewalls set up by my company. For example my company blocks Reddit and I ways able to view it through textise. I wonder if anyone does this too haha
I like Textise for all the reasons stated above and for enabling me to read internet articles at work without it being as obvious on my monitor to passersby.
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@Ian, great service.. We have a problem with our site. The site is a non-profit dedicated to to helping people cope with severe illness.
It’s developed in two human languages. (one with non-english characters).
The developer (me) used a CMS that does not separate the text data from its markup — it used to but with auto updating, it no longer does. sigh
Textise works fine, but it’s on a page by page basis. The site in question has over 200 pages in each language.
Could Textise handle such an endeavor?
Thanks for saying hello.
Textise converts content on a page by page basis, so the number of pages shouldn’t be a problem.
As the site is for a great cause, I’d be happy for you to add “text only” links for free.
I hope this answers your question. If not, let me know!
rendering pages in text only helps open the internet to older hardware. as older hardware is unable to display a lot of content, restricting the page to only text and links redusses the needed resources, and thus anything that can read html can browse
which algorithm this site follows??? please help
Apologies for the slow reply – I’ve just realised I hadn’t responded.
I wrote Textise myself, so it uses the “Textise” algorithm. 🙂 I use various techniques to remove extraneous code and present the results as tidily as possible.
Great when browsing with an apple II.
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I am loving the use of this site! Before finding Textise, I was very frustrated with having to pay for animated ads and clutter when I am really just looking for text to read, as I pay for data on my phone and MiFi accounts. (I don’t have cable or fios; stupid to pay for it, because I’m often on the road and rarely at my house.) Since starting to use Textise, my monthly data use has dropped from 3.4 GB to under 500 MB. The majority of the difference, excepting FB photos, had been unwanted Java-script photos, animated GIFs, and video ads for stuff I will never want or buy. Thank you, thank you, thank you! I am free from the tyranny of captive programming.
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Thanks for telling us how you use Textise, Marc. Great to hear you’re finding it so useful. 🙂
Hope this will be of use on a satellite phone (Iridium Go with X Web). Google used to have a way of stripping everything from web pages, but they deactivated it.
Sounds cool 🙂 Let me know if it works OK.
Thank goodness for this site.. I’ve been restricted to using a 1st gen iPad lately, and as iOS 5.1.1 is the latest update, few browsers even run, and of the ones that do, many sites crash them due to lack of mobile support. I thought google had this functionality some years ago, but seems to have been removed. Oh well, more traffic for your site then 🙂
Glad you’re finding Textise useful.
You never know, you might even find it useful on more modern machines too!
I am interested in the potential of this for parental controls / keeping out porn. Porn is basically VISUAL and if all pictures and videos are eliminated text is pretty harmless. The only add on is some means of preventing the child from clicking a link to exit the Textise environment. Could there be a choice in the preferences page to implement this and not include any links on the pages that take the user back to full page views. The ideal solution for everyone which I would be happy to pay for as an interment service would be a version which allows the user to set a default on every website with various levels of restriction from wide open, Eliminate Ads, Eliminate scripts, eliminate all images, and audio or visual media, and Full Texsise. Setting higher restrictions by default until a site shows it is well behaved would cut out a lot of mischief on the web.
Thanks for the interesting comment Mike. I think you’re right, there’s definitely potential in that area.
I’ll give it some thought.
Im using Ubuntu Precise with a outdated browser, which can’t connect to many websites, with your site I can! Thanks.
Thanks Jay – it’s great to hear Textise is able to help you!
“You’ve been randomly selected to try out the new Textise Preview version.”
Alas, for instance the page
is not textised, until I use “Opt out”.
I am not sure, what is the usual motivation for using the http://www.textise.net, but I use it
when my old browser is not able to show me some page. So I think you should take old browsers into account. When Google and Wikipedia works on old browsers, why not the textise.net?
In the source of a textised page is a script ….
Due this script my old browser shows only a blank page. I am forced to save the page locally, delete this script, and only then I can see the page. But this way, I am not able to do the “Opt out”, so the page above
is invisible for me even through the textise.net .
Hi – thanks for saying hello.
This is odd. What’s the old browser you’re using?
The old browser is Firefox 184.108.40.206 (Windows 98)
Opt in/Opt out for the page above is necessary for all browsers, for instance Chrome 98 or Firefox 92.
This would be great for browsing the web with my vintage PC (I have a 286, 386 and 486). The browsers are text only. But my DNS does not work, and I cannot just enter the IP address, it is not allowed. Any ideas?
New Use Case:
Textise seems to be good at helping me summarize blog articles and webpages because it removes all the pictures and clutter.
This makes it easier to copy and paste the text into ChatGPT. I then ask ChatGPT to summarize the text for me.
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Hi Josiah. That’s a really great use case! Thanks for sharing. 😊