July 14 2011

Justification For Two Monitors

Posted on the 09:38 am under Uncategorized by Darren Boyer

Ask 10 people who work with a computer every day if they need more than one monitor and the response will typically be “No, one screen is fine.” Ask 10 people who have two or three monitors if it would be better to go back to one monitor and the response will typically be “Not unless I have to!” So why the variation in response or why do people with more than one monitor almost always find it better for them?

Every manager who has staff with more than one monitor should be very happy. Having more than one monitor it is harder for them to hide what they have been doing quickly! Kidding aside, here are some of the reasons multiple monitors make sense.

Outlook is Always Available
If email, task, or calendar views are something that you use often multiple monitors make viewing these key applications always possible. For instance, while talking on the phone, referring back to a calendar to schedule meetings or then checking an inbox to reference email with two screens I can eliminate the toggle between email and calendar. Do this by right clicking the calendar tab and selecting open in a new window. Outlook becomes much easier for me when I can spread it’s different views across one or two screens.

Research / Reference is a breeze:
Use multiple resources to research a company or topic? The extra space or two monitors give the ability to read Webpage content on one screen, open a link to a reference page in a new window on the second screen, read that content and then switch back to the previous page and continue reading. It’s a huge de-hassle and time saver.

Multitasking Is Faster
Having more than one monitor allows multiple programs to be open at once. Moving between two applications when both are visible is much more natural and aligned to our natural way of working. Most people would lay out several physical papers on a desk for reference rather than stack them in a single neat pile if they needed them to work on a task. It is just easier if space permits to glance at multiple papers on a desk at once than sort through a pile for most people.
Having multiple monitors may offer the biggest impact on non-technical computer users. These users may not be as accustomed to using ALT+TAB to toggle back and forth between applications so they can more quickly use technology when multiple screens are available.

Written by Darren Boyer

Darren Boyer

Darren Boyer is the founder and president of pcit.

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