[ACCEPTED]-Is using a widescreen monitor in portrait orientation more effective for coding?-widescreen

Accepted answer
Score: 49

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I actually have 3 widescreen monitors in 28 portrait mode and yes, it's a fantastic 27 way to work. There's so much less scrolling 26 around and you can fit all your debug / output 25 / reference windows on screen at once.

The 24 problem with using two monitors is that 23 you'll generally be working on one main 22 one and have output (or whatever on another). If 21 you do have two, set it up so that your 20 primary monitor is directly in front of 19 you and the other (less frequently used) one 18 is off to one side. I find that to be the 17 best way to use a dual-monitor set up as 16 it reduces RSI from being permanently twisted 15 to look at a particular screen.

Additionally, there 14 are some programs available to provide virtual screen splits which I've fund very useful for large/widescreen 13 monitor setups.

[edit] ..and yes, you should write 12 functions short enough to fit on a single 11 page, but being able to see more functions 10 at any one time can often make development 9 easier in my experience :-)

[edit2] Running Visual-Studio-esque 8 IDEs in portrait on a widescreen monitor 7 is fantastic when it comes to debugging 6 compile errors as you have more useable 5 space to see code and errors at the same 4 time. I suppose you could argue that if 3 you compile regularly enough though, you 2 shouldn't see that many errors at one time? ...but 1 who codes like that? ;-)

Score: 16

Since you shouldn't write functions that 20 are longer than a screen, making the screen 19 much longer is a little bit of cheating, isn't 18 it? ;)

Anyway, I found portrait mode not 17 really better when coding, and only with 16 my old 17" widescreen in portrait mode was 15 viewing / editing documents better. With 14 two large screens in landscape mode, You 13 can put two pages on a screen when viewing 12 documents, and have many tool windows open 11 at both sides of the IDE's text editor. So 10 no, portrait mode is not better, unless 9 you have four of them to make up a really 8 large screen (there was a photo of such 7 a setup on a Microsoft blog, but I don't 6 remember where).

There are some applications 5 where portrait is still better, though, e.g. if 4 you have to show a document in large resolution, or 3 if you have some monitor (as in network 2 monitor) running and want to see more lines 1 at once.

Score: 5

I can't imagine how that would speed up 2 productivity. In my opinion, it is always easier 1 to scroll up/down than left/right.

Score: 4

It depends on which IDE you use, if any.

Microsoft 12 Visual Studio likes to take up a lot of 11 the width of the monitor with its “Toolbox” and 10 “Solution Explorer”, so I find it works 9 better on a landscape monitor. As it will 8 not let you undock an editor window, you 7 could not even drag a code editor to a second 6 monitor that was in portrait mode.

Also consider 5 how your customers are most likely to have 4 their monitors set up. You may wish to write 3 any UI code with the same setup, so you 2 get a feel for what the application will 1 be like to use.

Score: 3

Depends how big your monitor is. We have 3 1 28" monitor in landscape and 2 24" monitors 2 in portrait which flank the big monitor.

Works 1 great for pair-programming!

Score: 3

At work, I run my primary monitor (secondary 13 is the laptop screen), in portrait mode. I 12 really like it. I've become spoiled to 11 seeing more code at once. I don't find 10 that it encourages longer methods at all. Occasionally, I 9 run across code that is a bit too wide since 8 the IDE sidebars cramp it a bit, but I largely 7 use Eclipse (Rational Application Developer, but 6 Eclipse-based), so s quick double-click 5 maximizes the code window, and it's very 4 useful. Another double-click and I have 3 my sidebars back.

I also find it a very useful 2 orientation for my email.

I recommend it 1 highly.

Score: 3

Portrait mode widescreen monitors work very 6 nicely for edting code, thank you. However, some 5 monitors have poor viewing angles on one 4 dimension, which would usually be vertical 3 but becomes horizontal in portrait mode. This 2 can make the colours bad or unusable if 1 everything isn't aligned correctly.

Score: 2

I have never given it a try but I would 7 imagine it would work pretty well. I personally 6 like to keep my lines fairly short, and 5 wide screens tend to give me fewer lines 4 of code, so I would give it a try.

It all 3 comes down to personal preference however, what 2 ever allows you to be the most productive 1 and works best for you is the way to go.

Score: 2

For me it's not effective at all. I use 2 IDEs, so in landscape mode I have sidebars 1 to navigate code, navigate project etc.

Score: 2

It's not silly but a matter of opinion. A 9 widescreen in portrait is very nice for 8 writing code, code width has never really 7 been an issue, and being able to see more 6 line of code on the screen is always nice.

The 5 other reason to put a widescreen in portrait 4 is so it matches the height of your other 3 monitor, for example a 30" widescreen next 2 to a 22" widescreen in portrait have close 1 to the same height.

Score: 2

It all comes down to your preference.

I 1 just have one big monitor at my home office.

Score: 2

I tried it once. I didn't like it. I usually 19 have an IDE and IDEs are perfect for widescreen. It's 18 faster to jump around if you can see your 17 function list on the right, file list on 16 the left, etc.

Also, I try to keep my functions 15 small so this usually isn't a problem (I 14 have dual 24"). If your functions are reasonably 13 small, and you have widescreen, you can 12 show two files side by side which is often 11 more useful. Some editors allow you to 10 split the window and scroll to two different 9 parts of the same file. This is also very 8 useful is far better than having 100+ lines 7 on the screen. With my settings, I have 6 60 lines per screen on an editor. If I 5 split the editor, I can see 120. If I do 4 it again on the other monitor, I can see 3 240. That's quite a bit of code and generally 2 only useful for very different parts of 1 it.

Score: 1

If you're working mostly with text (as most 26 programmers or other technical folks do), or 25 even documents, then portait mode is much 24 more valuable. In fact, the general trend 23 in displays is all the wrong direction: aspect 22 ratios are squishing landscape displays 21 to a mail slot to better fit the format 20 of movies. Personally, I have never watched 19 a movie on my computers (laptop or desktop), and 18 I'm not about to start now - that's what 17 I have a TV for!

In reality, vertical pixels 16 are the most valuable asset in computing 15 - do whatever you can to get more of them 14 - you won't be sorry you spent the money! I 13 won't even buy a laptop with less than 1024-1080 12 vertical pixels, since that's the minumum required 11 to display a full page PDF at a readable 10 resolution, and (much) more is better. (Since 9 PDFs make up a large portion of today's 8 online documentation/manuals, that's a very 7 big concern.) You should only think about 6 width after you've got enough vertical pixels.

What 5 I really want is a 15.4" or 16" laptop with a 4 portrait screen - these should still be wide enough 3 to package a full-size keyboard into the 2 base - a FlyBook-style pivot arm would be 1 nice, but isn't required.

Score: 1

I found understanding the intent of related 13 functions are easier when you print them 12 first on paper than understanding them directly 11 from screen, never fails, why? Because you 10 can easily review many lines of code at 9 one glance, no need for incessant scrolling.

The 8 same thing with monitor oriented in portrait 7 mode, you can easily understand the intent 6 of multiple related functions, re-factored 5 or otherwise. But don't let having portrait 4 screen be an excuse to write a function 3 with many lines.

Writing this on stackoverflow 2 using portrait screen :-)

I can easily see 1 many posts at one glance :-)

Score: 0

If you are working with print material, yes, as 5 for source, why not full screen your IDE 4 and close the task panes you do not need?

I 3 find portrait is only useful to me if I'm 2 working on a web site, being able to see 1 the entire page at once helps.

Score: 0

I would say if the monitor is large enough 17 you don't need portrait mode (24" and higher) for 16 writing code.

If the monitor is smaller than 15 that, then portrait mode is preferable.

Ideally 14 what you would have is a single 30" (2560 13 x 1600) as widescreen to work on your code 12 along with utilities comfortably open nearby 11 and a second smaller monitor nearby to preview 10 the results (I am speaking about web coding 9 specifically here but it would probably 8 apply to most other coding as well - a screen 7 the size of your target audience's screens).

The 6 30" screens have really come down in price 5 now so it's probably worth the jump up. A 4 24" screen does have the advantage of significantly 3 larger text at default font sizes. The text 2 on 30" monitors can get to be a bit of grind 1 unless you move up to 14pt.

Good luck.

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