Multiple Monitors for Increased Productivity by Samuel James Pinson

A dual monitor setup is a good way to boost your productivity as a translator. In this post I want to share my current dual-monitor setup and invite you to share yours. For years I enjoyed a 19” AMW F199 LCD monitor sitting next to a 20” Samsung Syncmaster 205BW monitor, both of which had been stacked on top of a few outdated reference books to make their height ergonomically correct. But when my 19” monitor recently began to flicker and die, I decided it was time to upgrade. After a bit of research, I purchased two Viewsonic 27” Full HD Widescreen LED Backlight LCD monitors and an Ergotron LX Dual Side-by-Side Arm to hold them up.

That’s a substantial increase in screen real estate, which I’m hoping will yield some productivity gains as I spend less time scrolling and switching between windows. I’ve been looking at DisplayFusion, a window manager, to help me get the most out of my new monitors.

Here are the window management features that I like so far:

·       Ability to split my large monitors into multiple “virtual monitors”;

·       Configurable window snapping;

·       Windows® taskbar for each virtual monitor;

·       Ability to wrap the mouse cursor around monitor edges. Think Pac-Man – moving the cursor off the left edge of the screen makes it appear on the right edge. This can reduce wrist motion;

·       Ability to specify the specific monitor and position a particular application will open in;

·       Key combinations to quickly place windows where I want them.

As can be seen in the photo above, I’m going to try having one of the monitors in a portrait orientation. When I translate this is where I will put my CAT tools, allowing me to see a large amount of the text without the need to scroll.

I like my setup, but I’m always interested in learning what other people have found to be helpful. What monitor configuration and window managers have you found to be most productive? What’s your dream multi-monitor setup? Please share!