Re: Business case for dual monitors

Subject: Re: Business case for dual monitors
From: "Suzette Leeming" <suzette -dot- leeming -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "McLauchlan, Kevin" <Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 1 May 2008 11:52:52 -0400

At my last job, I telecommuted and worked from home where my setup was 2
computers - one running the app & Snagit, and the other Framemaker & Acrobat
& Word.

When I started with my current company, I only telecommute 50%. So, same set
up at home. At the office, one of the developers had 2 monitors and I
thought... what a great idea! So I asked for and received a second monitor.
My productivity is at least 25% greater with this set up, as I don't need to
keep switching windows around. I see the app on the left monitor while I
write about it on the right monitor.

I've upgraded my home system to a 24" wide screen LCD monitor, so I have
enough room to have the app, and my software open side by side. Not great,
but it works. I'm planning to get a second monitor at some point though.

Now I'm trying to convince them to buy me LCD monitors at work since they
take up less desk room and are easier on my eyes (I have really bad
eyesight). It seems there's a "pecking" order to get LCD monitors, but I
think I'll probably get them by the end of this year (fingers crossed).



On Thu, May 1, 2008 at 11:40 AM, McLauchlan, Kevin <
Kevin -dot- McLauchlan -at- safenet-inc -dot- com> wrote:

> I'm not quite sure what the business case is, and I already _have_ two
> 20-inch monitors (plus the old CRT attached to my old test-bed box --
> along with the mini-rack of four of our appliance products, this makes
> for a crowded cube - Lorenzo, the hedgehog who oversees the whole mess
> barely has a place to sit....... that reminds me; I need to dust him).
>
> On my dual-monitor desktop, I currently have open:
> - 13 Windows Explorer instances
> - Outlook, with 11 e-mails (including this one)
> - MKS Integrity, our bug-tracking and version-tracking system
> - Firefox (multiple tabs, mostly work-related)
> - a couple of Internet Explorer 6 instances
> - Acrobat
> - Distiller
> - 4 MS Word documents
> - 1 FrameMaker document
> - my ancient copy of SnagIt
> - Madcap Flare
> - OpenOffice Writer (two documents)
> - and I just closed Visio
>
> Later today, I'll have GIMP or Illustrator (or both) open for a while.
>
> Two monitors is barely enough. When I used to borrow a laptop, I felt
> horribly cramped by that single little screen.
>
> Our company is being... er.... prudent with purchases, and nevertheless,
> more and more people in the office are quietly getting a second monitor.
> Apparently, they just have to ask, now that several of us have had a
> dual-monitor setup for a few years. The "new guy" hardware guy across
> the aisle bought himself a 24-inch display two days after he started
> here, late last year, because he was too shy to request company-supplied
> big-screen real-estate when he was still on probation. Nice screen...
> but I predict he'll be getting two company-provided monitors soon, and
> lugging the 24-incher home, where it belongs.
>
> I look forward to the day when I can move to Linux and use Compiz/Beryl
> and that spinning transparent cube of desktops. :-)
>
> Anyway, here's a thought:
>
> Does your company have any shame?
>
> If not, then stop reading.
>
> If you think they do, then you might consider buying your own
> dual-monitor setup, using it, then trying to embarrass them into
> reimbursing you.
>
> Does anybody else in the company have a dual-head setup? Is there a
> graphics person? Use the precedent. Is there perhaps a
> graphics-services house that you folks use for occasional artwork and
> such? They'll be using dual-triple-quad or giant-screen setups. Draw a
> parallel.
>
> Determine who is the signing authority, or who would be the one to
> convince the authority. Set up a little mirror or other warning system,
> and whenever that person passes your desk, be furiously pounding
> [Alt]-[Tab] on your keyboard. When they ask what you are doing, mutter
> something about wasting so much time trying to find stuff on this
> cramped display.
>
> No doubt some smartass will pooh-pooh the visual real-estate enhancement
> in favor of a freeware "Dashboard" utility to make it easier to jump
> around and find stuff. To that you reply: "Oh yeah! That one. That's so
> neat... too bad about the keystroke logger... you don't type passwords
> or do your banking on that computer, do you?" Walk away, shaking head
> sadly.
>
> I'm willing to bet that, with the exception of a few Techwr-l members
> who pride themselves on getting the most out of limited tools[*] and
> pretending that they never experience discomfort... the rest of our
> list-members are either already using multiple monitors (or single
> big'uns), or are even now conniving to get 'em.
>
> [* You know, the ones who say "why I create entire Help systems using a
> text editor on my Crackberry, while driving and preparing a gourmet
> lunch with the plug-in coffee-cup warmer in my Mercedes SUV..." Yeah,
> those people. :-) ]
>
> Kevin
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RE: Business case for dual monitors: From: McLauchlan, Kevin

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