I just read a very insightful article by Paul Boutin called The Best Computer Upgrade Ever: Forget about a Faster Processor. Splurge on a Bigger Screen.
Paul talks about two different offices that he commutes to and his epiphany that he likes working at Office B with a slower machine and larger monitor.
Its a great point to make. You can speed up the machine every six months but nothing speeds up the operator like giving them more visual space to think and spread out their work and ideas.
A couple years ago, I started booking more time in the conference room when it wasn’t being used, so that I could run dual screens on my laptop and on the projector. Two years and a corporate scandal later I run my own business and have my own projector. I run dual monitors with the projector on the wall all the time.
There’s nothing like having a 5 foot tall by 7 feet wide monitor on the wall. It elliminates a great deal of eye strain. It also encourages me to get up and interact with my work thinking all the time.
Now, last year at CES I saw a fantastic projector from Canon that’s on my Christmas list this year. The resolution on this projector was nothing short of amazing and the level of detail as a result is almost shocking.
Now to challenge Paul’s premise, I’d suspect that once you start running a larger monitor capable of displaying enough detail on a screen or wall to replicate an 8 screen layout of programs (4 on top and 4 on the bottom) then you might just be interested in running to the store to upgrade your computer processor(s).