Multiple computer screens can enhance functionality
On a recent project with a mid-size Bishop Street business, the CEO was eager to show off his new 30-inch big screen LCD monitor that he had purchased off of eBay for "a steal." We all marveled at it, but we also were struck by the thought that perhaps the screen was less than perfect.
To see the entire screen, the CEO had to place it on one corner of his large koa desk and sit as far away as possible at another corner. Also, a result of sitting farther away, screen objects, like fonts and icons, have to be bigger.
The net result? The actual amount of information displayed remains the same.
Along with a mouse and a keyboard, a monitor is your primary means of working with your computer, at least for today. As such, improving the functionality of your screen can go a long way toward enriching your computing experience.
A different solution to a single large screen would be two (or more) smaller displays. First, from a cost perspective, two middle of the road (17-19") displays almost always cost less than one large unit. As anyone in business can attest, you can have several criteria by which to make a decision, but cost is always foremost.
Second, two mid-range monitors are more agile. Individually, of course, they weigh less than a large monitor, so they can be easily moved around to fit your desires. They can be angled such that they both fully meet your eyes, as opposed to a single large display where a small, yet important portion of the screen might face the glare of the sun. We've even seen multiple monitors stacked one on top of the other.
Furthermore, to save electricity, at times you can choose to use only one of your monitors. If you're just jumping on the Internet to check a movie showtime, you can leave the other units cold. If one of your units goes on the fritz, you can still survive with the other.
From a technical perspective, you will need multiple connectors to support each of your monitors. Most modern cards have two connectors, but double check to be sure. A popular configuration for laptop users is to use the built-in laptop display along with an external monitor.
It is a simple matter to display information across multiple screens. For Windows, go to Control panel/Display/Settings. Select the unit that you want to work with and click on the checkbox that says "Extend my Windows desktop onto this monitor." Macintosh users can access similar options through System Preferences/Displays.
is president of ISDI Technologies Inc., a Honolulu-based IT consultancy. Call him at 944-8742 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org