Like most nonprofit office workers I practically live in my email, but I found myself too often flipping between windows in order to compare, copy, or reference information from a spreadsheet to an email. So I took the plunge and bought a cheap and simple little device called a USB Video Adapter. I bought this one IOGear USB Video Card and it has made my life so much easier.
It’s a very simple device that allows you to have two monitors plugged in to one computer. Now you may be saying “Two monitors! I have a hard enough time staring at just one monitor all day. Now you want me to have two?” But, hold on. Sure, it may seem a little much, but hold your judgment and think it through for a minute.
How many times do you find yourself working on a grant proposal and constantly flipping back and forth between your proposal and the foundation guidelines or your latest budget numbers? How many clicks and flips could you save if you had two screens?
How many times do you find yourself replying to an email and flipping back and forth between your donor database and Outlook? How many clicks of the mouse could you spare your hand and wrist?
How many times do you have to compare a spreadsheet with something from your donor database or mailing list? How many misplaced numbers could you spare yourself?
I’ve found the benefits are almost endless.
The USB Video Adapter is very simple to install just plug the USB cord in like you would a camera or keyboard then plug your extra monitor into the small adapter. That’s it. Your computer should automatically recognize you have two monitors. Just line the monitors up on your desk and you now have twice the power!
Quite a few people comment about the dual monitors when they come into my office and I’m sure some think it is excessive. But I would rather give up using pen and paper than lose my two monitors. And for the mere cost of the USB adapter ($50) and another monitor ($100) it’s too good to pass up.
This post is part of the Nonprofit Blog Carnival, hit it up this month to find other great must have tools.
Photo Credit: 1024 Green Street
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