Today: 3 monitors; tomorrow: the world!

Three monitors, one PC
My desk at work, today.

Lunchtimes are fun here. In that one hour of freedom you can get on with fun little projects or try things out while your work colleagues are busily munching on a packet of sandwiches from Boots.

Today I stole borrowed my colleague Steve’s second monitor off his desk and plugged it into my PC … as my third monitor! Don’t tell him! Actually, he’s on holiday just now so I’m sure he won’t mind.

I’ve had so much going on these past two weeks that I kept thinking to myself: I wish I had an extra monitor. Now I do … for the next few days at least. In fact if I’d not already run out of graphics cards installed in my PC I’d have nicked his other monitor too!

I know that I’m going to miss monitor #3 when I have to return it to the other side of the office on Friday afternoon. Not least because Steve has better, bigger monitors than I do (19″ Sony TFT compared with my NEC 17″ TFT).

Development setup

For development work it’s really useful, here’s what I have on my monitors (from left-to-right):

HTML editor, FTP, browser

  1. Code: Coding window (WeBuilder 2007)
  2. Upload: FTP window (WS_FTP Professional)
  3. Test: Browser window (Firefox)

No more wasting time flipping between coding and FTP windows. Actually, a fourth monitor would be really useful to keep my graphics application open all the time … and a fifth for Explorer … and a sixth for Email and instant messenger.

Normal setup

For other, more mundane stuff I can use the setup in other ways. At the moment, to write this blog I have this configuration:

browser, graphics, comms

  1. Main: Firefox is open to write this blog post
  2. Supporting applications: I have my graphics application (Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo XI) in this window to edit photos and screenshots
  3. Communications: Email and instant messenger

I’ll check out UltraMon later to see what extra functionality that offers. (Thanks to David Healy for the tip.)

I’m going to enjoy it while it lasts. I just have to make sure that before Friday I don’t accidentally shut down the internet, melt down the national grid or accidentally launch a space shuttle.

Published by

Gareth Saunders

I’m Gareth J M Saunders, 46 years old, 6′ 4″, father of 3 boys (including twins). Latterly, web architect and agile project manager at the University of St Andrews and warden at Agnes Blackadder Hall. Currently on sabbatical. I am a priest in the Scottish Episcopal Church, and I sing with the NYCGB alumni choir.

3 thoughts on “Today: 3 monitors; tomorrow: the world!”

  1. What I want to know is who (what sad person) has that many Argos catalogues around to act as monitor risers?!

    The best system for multiple monitors I saw was in a control room for a server installation where there were multiple monitors (one for each server) but only one keyboard and mouse. The system was set up so that the keyboard and mouse was connected to whatever screen/machine the mouse was on. Now that was impressive.

    Kennedy

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