Monday, October 17, 2005

Be more productive, buy a bigger monitor

More than once at my old job I got into an argument with the powers that be about monitor size. They were all for buying small size screen monitors that were cheaper, I insisted on getting the largest possible screens which I affirmed could improve productivity. They didn't buy my argument and, consequently, didn't buy the monitors I wanted, either.

So, I never did prevail, but some vindication has arrived to me in the form of a New York Times article, Meet the life hackers (via), which discusses work interruptions, the secrets of highly productive professionals and software research that tries to get the most out of an inevitably interruption-filled modern workplace. Check out this bit from page 3:

The researchers took 15 volunteers, sat each one in front of a regular-size 15-inch monitor and had them complete a variety of tasks designed to challenge their powers of concentration - like a Web search, some cutting and pasting and memorizing a seven-digit phone number. Then the volunteers repeated these same tasks, this time using a computer with a massive 42-inch screen, as big as a plasma TV.

The results? On the bigger screen, people completed the tasks at least 10 percent more quickly - and some as much as 44 percent more quickly. They were also more likely to remember the seven-digit number, which showed that the multitasking was clearly less taxing on their brains.
So there, we should have bought bigger monitors that time. At least now I got that out of my system.


At 4:22 AM, Blogger Benji York said...

I definitely agree on the larger monitors, having more helps too. I use a 21" and a 15" LCD duel head Windows box with my laptop (15" LCD plus 21"). I use x2vnc so my laptop keyboard and mouse control it all.

See :)

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