As I type this, I am on a PC running Windows XP SP3 displayed on a 15″ LCD monitor.
And I only have a maximum of 1024 x 768 screen resolution.
We all know that for the most part, bigger is better. Now as far as my post is concerned, what is bigger pertains to monitors. LCD monitors to be specific.
For casual Web surfers, having a decent computer with decent specs will do so they can perform their day-to-day Internet activities. Some take it a notch higher and desire to have a larger monitor for more screen real estate. What more if these people are gamers who will want every bit of pixel used for their highly-animated and tantalizing game?
For me, as a programmer, a larger screen can only do wonders for development (especially if it’s web development that we’re talking about here). I shouldn’t be wasting time dragging all these cluttered windows around, maximizing and minimizing and maximizing and minimizing and then restoring them to different sizes. It’s simply tiring to have to Alt-Tab your way through different windows, large and small, just to be able to get some work done. I’m not saying that a larger monitor is the sole factor in delivering the web system but rather, the simple effort of upgrading your small monitor to a larger one does significant effects on development.
Let me cite a study by the University of Utah around a year ago.
Increasing screen space increases productivity … When multiple windows are used for typical work, the standard 17-inch monitor and smaller are considerably less productive choices than larger options.
These days, monitors have been on a downhill dive because of the improvements in technology. Not only have CRTs been phased out gradually, but also LCD monitors are gaining prominence lately especially that it saves on electricity as well as desk space.
Businesses should realize this need. It’s not solely a “we don’t have enough budget for that” issue: They’ll be able to improve productivity by doing this simple favor for their employees (programmers). If they can’t provide competitive salaries, then this is one of the things they can resort to. After all, having a good set of arms when off to war can ensure victory.