Kommandeering Developers Everywhere

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Productivity gains - two monitors

Why do I even bother? Two monitors can certainly be useful; and my current contract is a perfect example. I constantly need more virtual real estate. Who knew that a 15" laptop display could be insufficient? You knew.

The problem: My Windows XP build. I've never really had problems with Windows' ability to either clone or extend desktops in the past, but now when I need it the most (now), I'm handcuffed.

Any gain from temporarily having two monitors is lost from the constant tinkering needed to keep this house of cards going. I'm not talking quirky energy-saving/hibernation/shutdown behavior. I'm talking:
* One screen randomly shutting off while I'm typing
* Constant reordering of which is the primary monitor
* Inability to even hold the settings that I've chosen
* Inability to figure out what display device might be attached to a laptop, and what is attached through VGA
* Launching downsized applications to a display that doesn't exist because you gave up on dual monitors for several weeks, and have rebooted several times with no ill-effects, and are now suddenly forced to turn on the 2nd monitor and re-setup dual monitors just to get at your application.
* Being forced to use the same resolution in the best of circumstances because all of these inconsistencies totally JAM your ability to view anything when resolutions flip-flop.

Short of randomization routines or playful elves in my memory registers, I'm at a total loss as to how this interface works. It's a total shell game. I would rather solve a Rubik's Cube with my feet.


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