Bigger is Better

I bit the bullet and went and bought an LCD television to use as my computer monitor this weekend. I ended up getting a 42″ television and I was worried that I had made the wrong decision.

I definitely did not!

With 42″ of real estate and 1920 x 1080 resolution I am definitely seeing the difference compared to my dual monitor setup of two 19″ LCDs each set to 1280 x 1024 resolution. Yes, I have actually lost a few pixels when it comes to the width of the display. Those 640 lines of dots were well worth it though, because I now have all of the advantages of a lot of screen real estate just like I did before but I also have gained the ability to really focus.

You see two displays eventually become a problem because you populate one with your email and the other with your browser, or some similar type of setup. That means that when you are focused on one screen you risk being distracted by the other screen. Reading an article online? When a new email arrives you are distracted by it. Writing up an important email? When that Google Chrome extension alerts you to a new RSS feed item you are distracted by it. Sure you can get into the habit of minimizing all of the windows on one display when working on the other, but then what was the point of getting multiple displays to begin with?

But with one gigantic monitor I can easily have multiple windows open when I do not need to focus, and when I maximize a single window it gets my full attention. And with such a large screen I find myself really focused on that single window. Seriously, using WriteMonkey on a 42″ monitor is like locking yourself in an underground bunker. It doesn’t hurt that my home office is nice and secluded from the wife and kids, but switching to a single monitor has only improved the experience.

What does this have to do with gaming? I am so itching to run an online game with this thing! I think having ScreenMonkey (apparently I like monkey products), Skype, and Google Docs all open at the same time on one single screen will greatly improve the experience of being an online GM. Once I get a chance to test it out I’ll be sure to share the experience here with the rest of you.