Are you using dual monitors? If so, how?

Just curious how many of you are running two monitors at your workstation. 

For example: Scripts, Word docs on one monitor, Studio '09 on the other? Or is the layout more based on your active applications?

I've found that two monitors really help for webinars where one screen is the live, presentation screen and the other is used to stage examples or talking points.

Anyway, if your'e running two monitors, how do you manage your workspaces?

50 Replies
Craig Wiggins

Three monitors:

  • Fireworks, Chrome and Klok at right. Sometimes Camtasia is here as well.
  • PowerPoint, Excel, Word (storyboards, change request status, and SME notes, respectively) and Audacity at left
  • Outlook and main authoring tools (Articulate, Lectora, myUdutu, etc) in the center. An open Dropbox folder usually rests here, but tends to float to whichever monitor makes the most sense for it to rest.

This is my setup at work. Once you go to this setup, however, it's really kind of hard to go back to one monitor..which is why I ordered two more monitors for my home office over the weekend.

David Anderson

Three monitors! Now that's a power setup. I've used two but mostly use my single, 30".

What's funny, is that I will often disconnect monitor and use only the laptop. Something about the smaller screen seems to help filter out the noise that comes with the larger screens

Although, I'm intrigued by the idea of three monitors...

Joe Deegan

I agree with Craig.  Once I went with dual monitors it's hard to work on anything else.  I find that it's more of a constant shuffle between screens depending on what I am working on at the time.  Nobody mentioned where they put their tunes.  I usually have iTunes or Pandora running on stage 2.  I think I might need the 3rd monitor like Craig mentioned for my tunes.

Lori Ruppert

I run two monitors, typically I lay them out like this:

1. Outlook, PPT, Fireworks, Engage, and Quizmaker

2. IE, my content for online class or quizmaker quizzes, and misc programs

I love that I can roll from one screen to the other with what I'm cutting and pasting.  I use it to compare similar docs too.

I agree no way could I go back to one monitor.  Very little investment for a lot of efficiency!

Oh yeah and, of course, I can read my e-learning hero emails on one screen and open the links on the other one!

Sarah Newman

I'm super super jealous of Craig for having three monitors! I have two and I could NEVER go back to one. In fact, I started my current job in February after having worked for 3 years with dual monitors and when I got to my desk, the first thing I asked my boss was if I could bring in a second monitor. When you're incorporating comments, it is literally the best invention in the world. Here's my typical setup:

Monitor 1:

PowerPoint/Articulate Product Suite

Email

Monitor 2:

Word documents (client/SME comments, source material, etc)

Excel spreadsheets (source material, schedules, etc)

PDFs (source material)

Internet Explorer

Miscellaneous other junk

Now if I could only convince my boss to let me switch to Mac with Windows running in Parallels, my setup would be complete...

blair parkin

I'm with the majority here using dual monitors. Usually they are set up as follows:

  1. Powerpoint / Presenter
  2. IE, Engage or Quizmaker, project folder

I can get by on one screen at home using my mac as hot corners make it easy enough to switch, but at work I would seriously struggle without two screens for my PC. As for tunes I use my ipod. Our IT policy is too restrictive around music/streaming so its just easier to bring my own.

Blair

James Brown

In order to run dual or triple monitors you need a compatible graphic card. As long as the motherboard will support the card, it really doesn't matter how old the PC or MAC is.   My HDMI monitor cable feeds off one port and has a splitter. Then I just set the dual monitor up via the control panel / display icon. On my home PC I actually have dual SLI Nvidia GT9800 cards that boosts graphic performance and I am able to easily run two monitors. However many gamers actually use three to six Nvidia SLI Cards to run games and I can only imagine just how fast these games run.

Kathleen Harper

Two monitors here, throughout our department. (Wish we had three!)

I use the monitors somewhat "freely"  but here's a "snapshot" of my daily use:

Monitor 1: PPT open with the window spread over monitor 1 and 2: On the left is the PPT storyboard, on the right is the Articulate version of the course I'm building

Monitor 2: "behind" the PPT, e-mail, file and file resource folders open, Photoshop open and minimized for on-the-fly image edits.

Minimized below may be 10 other document folders, word docs, etc.

(which is why I wish I had three monitors, it's always all going on at once for me.)

Edit: Oh... and I also have a laptop that sometime serves as e-mail and always as my music... my iPod is hooked up to it and it's on a wireless network that isn't behind our firewall like my production machine is, so I can view tutorials and other necessary-but-firewall-blocked stuff. So I SORT of have three monitors but the laptop monitor is no good for quality viewing of graphics.

Amanda Westendorf

Phil Mayor said:

I would love to be able to have powerpoint on each monitor,

Phil


Phil - you can, even with 2007 (works for Excel too). If you have two PPTs open:

  • Click on the View tab
  • Drag your PPT window to cover both screens
  • Click on Arrange All

Now that I'm trying to actually do this to make sure these steps are in the right order, I can't get PPT to open up on my computer....argh. Will have to reboot. Anyway, you can view more than one PPTs at once utilizing multiple screens.

Justin Wilcox

When I'm not at home I rock the portable dual monitors with a netbook and an iPad. This isn't a true dual monitor set up in the sense that I can move stuff from one screen to another but it serves me very well and allows me to be the multitasking fool that I am. Here I am working AND checking my Blockbuster queue.

Phil Mayor

Amanda Westendorf said:

Phil Mayor said:

I would love to be able to have powerpoint on each monitor,

Phil


Phil - you can, even with 2007 (works for Excel too). If you have two PPTs open:

  • Click on the View tab
  • Drag your PPT window to cover both screens
  • Click on Arrange All

Now that I'm trying to actually do this to make sure these steps are in the right order, I can't get PPT to open up on my computer....argh. Will have to reboot. Anyway, you can view more than one PPTs at once utilizing multiple screens.


thank you, will give it a try

Phil