Increase Productivity By Increasing Screen Size

Have you ever found yourself scrolling up and down in a spreadsheet or web site to read the contents? Fortunately there is a simple fix...increase your screen size so more information fits on your screen.

Today's monitors support several different resolutions. Screen resolution refers to the number of pixels (dots) visible on the screen. The default VGA resolution is 640 pixels across by 480 pixels high. Increasing to the next step (800 x 600), adds about 56% to the total screen area. 1024 x 768 resolution adds 156% over standard VGA's screen area.

Why are many PCs not set up for an ultra-high resolution? Two reasons: not all monitors support higher resolutions, and as the dots-per-screen level increases, the picture gets smaller as the dots get smaller. To counter the shrinking picture, users can select a larger monitor size. The "perfect" size varies from user to user, but generally we recommend running at least 800 x 600 on a 15-inch monitor, 1024 x 768 on a 17-inch monitor, and 1280 x 1024 on a 19-inch monitor. If you have good eyesight and a sharp monitor you can even try higher resolutions.

To change resolutions in Windows 95 or 98, open the Display icon in your Control Panel. Click the Settings tab. Here you will find a slider or menu to choose resolutions (some video drivers appear differently). Pick a new resolution and click the Apply button. Note you may need to reboot to change resolutions. If Windows offers to change resolutions on the fly, it will prompt you to keep the new resolution, and return to the old one if you do not approve the choice.

With less clicking and scrolling, users will experience increased productivity and less wrist strain.

July 2000

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