A couple of months ago, I posted out that one of the best productivity investments any information worker can make is increasing desktop real estate. It saves time flicking between windows, lets you always keep your email/support software open, lets you code in full screen and read documentation at the same time. Since I last posted about the Samsung SM2443BW 24” TFT monitor I’ve bought another one.
When you’ve got more monitors it is possible to get a lot more work done than you would be able to otherwise. Windows 7 RC has some intuitive new improvements for window management (such as allowing a window to be dragged to edges of any display to maximise to one half of the display) and Visual Studio 2010 finally has an interface that, like Photoshop, can be split across multiple displays.
Now. Note the plant (he’s called Steve) has migrated and the Microsoft Desktop set has been replaced by a Logitech one (that’s another story)
Monitors from left to right: 2 x Samsung SM2443BW, 1 x Dell 2405FPW, 1 x Samsung SyncMaster 171s
The Samsung display that I purchased for the previous review actually developed a fault after 30 days, two days after eBuyer will accept an RMA return for it. I had a very bright pink line that ran down the display caused by the transistors for an entire row of blue and red being stuck in the on position. Samsung arranged a warranty replacement that was delivered about ten days later. The only trouble was that the replacement monitor buzzed like a swarm of bees making a nest on the inside the display whenever the brightness was turned down below 100%, and on 100% you need a pair of sunglasses to use the monitor as the default 100% brightness setting is very bright. Samsung replaced this monitor a week later with another one that buzzed like a mosquito, better but not quite right. Yesterday Samsung replaced the monitor with one without any discernable buzzing, no questions asked. Interestingly the first monitor was manufactured in March 2009, the second in November 2008 and the fourth in October 2008. My latest panel was manufactured in April 2009 so by rights it should be buzzing like a buzzer! It seems ok at the moment, fingers crossed…
Bill Gates, “How I Work”: http://money.cnn.com/2006/03/30/news/newsmakers/gates_howiwork_fortune/index.htm
If you work with computers and you haven’t tried using two displays yet, consider trying it as being able to maximise all the programs you use throughout your day can make a big improvement to your speed, productivity and responsiveness.