Sunday, January 14, 2007

7 is Cooler Than 24

We lost internet service in the Dallas area for the past couple of days because of an ice storm. It’s the longest outage I have experienced since high speed service was introduced. It’s not comfortable. I use the word comfortable because I think it is the best description of my feeling at losing something that has become a major element of my day. It makes me uncomfortable, I feel disconnected..……imagining that the ability to access the internet was not possible in any form for the majority of my life makes my dependence all the more remarkable. To use 70’s vernacular; it’s a ‘bummer’ when it’s gone.

I just finished watching the first 2 episodes of this season’s television premiere of 24. It looks like Jack Bauer is still a ‘can do’ kind of guy but slightly compromised from his 2 years in a Chinese prison. I don’t know why small things like that should trouble him.

Here is something I noticed while watching 24. No one in the fabled CTU magic government office is using a multiple monitor setup. I mean, come on Hollywood! I have multiple monitors (well, actually only 2). Don’t let my bragging have much influence on you however, cuz I just finished setting it up last weekend. I also set it up for BEG since she is a pro photographer and works with Photoshop constantly. Let me tell you I really like this. Here’s a pic of BEG’s set-up.

Cool huh?

In this configuration, the additional monitor functions as an area to store open applications or you can stretch an open file such as AutoCad across both screens. I use it very effectively to keep several spreadsheets open at once and transfer information between spreadsheets via copy and paste commands. I do this every day in my ‘earn a living’ work. Now, instead of having to click an open file up from the taskbar, I can keep it open on the other monitor. There are many other reasons that the set-up is very useful. I like it a lot.

Here’s a pic of my set-up.

I’m using a smaller second monitor than BEG because I don’t work with graphics as often and I like the primary and slave monitor ‘feel’ better. Also, I was able to use an older monitor that had been squirreled away in the top of a closet.

Notice the custom background? Here’s a close-up.

The design of the name Seven was inspired by recent comments left at this site. I bet you already know how to design a custom background, but if not email me and I will help you.

So….now I’m wondering if the fictitious CTU headquarters on 24 is such a fancy schmancy worldwide high speed computer kinda place……how come they aren’t using multiple monitors like humble Seven and the lovely BEG?


For the audiophiles like Rick Leonard, one thing I really enjoy is being able to keep I-Tunes open and expanded on the small monitor while surfing on the big monitor. Very handy.


Anonymous said...

Nice set up there Seven!
CTU isn't all that cool, they don't have multiple monitors and they've had to listen to that dumb ring on their phones for years.

Rick said...

Multiple monitors are just one of many things I have yet to try. 'Course, I've got a turntable taking up desk space at the moment.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't fit multiple monitors on my desk. Especially since the one I have is 100 years old and as big as my car. Almost.

But right now, I'm using my laptop and I can see my monitor. Does that count? Prolly not. Oh well.

Anonymous said...

Well, now you've brought out the ugly green monster. Yes, I have monitor envy! When I get into my house, I'll resolve it, though. I have 2 desktops and a laptop. Maybe I'll string them all together! Uh-huh!

And yes, Seven is better than 24.

Seven said...

Where ya been girl? To be honest I hadn't paid attention to the phone rings. I am amazed that their cell phones will give them coordinates for enemy surveillance satellites though. That's something Sprint and Verizon should certainly market!

Just turn one of the LP records shiny side vertical. STOD. (same thing only different)

What size is your car? Either way that's one BIG monitor.

Silver Lovely,
It's a useful tool if you use multiple applications like I do. It's a little more difficult than just using a splitter though. If you have 2 monitor ports on the video card that is on your computer, just hook up 2 monitors and use Control Panel:Display:Settings to configure the monitors. If you don't have a card with 2 ports, you will need a new video card that has 2 ports. Then go to Control Panel for configuration. Good Luck, its easy (sort of)

~Deb said...

I used to watch "24" all the time- loved it! They would be lucky to have you install this high tech set up for them! This looks great!

Anonymous said...

Love your custom background!!!

how easy is it to do??
do you need anything special?

Would love to try this....

btw.. excellent computer set up for both of you!

Seven said...

Tonight there is another 2 hour special, episodes 3&4 of the current season. I find a lot of the writing improbable, but that is a major part of the attraction, is it not?

Silent Girl,
Find a photo or art work you like. Size it to 800 pixels wide x 600 pixels high. Create the look you want including graphics if desired. If using Windows operating system save the file under Windows:Web:Wallpaper. Use Control Panel:Display as you always do for wallpaper and select the file to display it as your background. If using a Mac...I don't know.
Or send me a photo you want use and what you want the graphics to say and I will do one for u....:)

Anonymous said...

7even is better than 24 because you are REAL! :)
Hubs is in IT...neck deep- UNIX stuff- ick! He has the dual monitor thing going in his office here at home- and at work.
There are no less than 7 computers in this house- all networked...and 4 people live here :) I haven't found a need for a second monitor yet- but if I do- I know who can make it happen.

Last year I took a photo (in Costco) with my cell phone and emailed it to myself...then I looked up at hubs and said, "I uploaded the schematics of the building to CTU- they'll have the layout in just a few seconds!"

I thought he was going to fall over laughing :)

Now you've got me thinking about fooling around with a custom background...sigh :) Don't even know where to begin with that! :)

Seven said...

Now your talkin! Imagine a custom background with the actual floor plan of CTU, then graphic over the top "The Palmer's Rule" could go with the Costco layout.

patti_cake said...

Those peeps on 24 have NOTHING on you Seven. You da coolest!

Seven said...

I always have respected your keen judgment.

Anonymous said...

Nice setup seven, very smart. And thanks for your comments on my blog.

Seven said...

Thanks. I was really just trying to make a weak joke about 24 since it's new season just started, but I really have enjoyed the 2 monitor thing!

Anonymous said...

I need to set up my desktop with something like this... for sure I have enough monitors ... cool setup!

Rob said...

7, so when you are up in the closet, you can check to see if anyone's messing with those spreadsheets of re-drafting your AutoCad, right? or maybe relax and watch 24, 7 so to speak.

Enemy of the Republic said...

Uncle! This is the third post I've read on that show by bloggers I really respect. I've never seen it. I don't have cable. I only watch House and we usually tape it and I watch it in a marathon because I don't have the time. But I am going to rent the back episodes of 24. But I won't buy cable! This Jack guy has the blog intelligensia enthrallled!!!

Seven said...

Yep I figure all of us have a monitor or two stuck up in a closet or attic. May as well use it.

Good to see ya. I think 24 is far too intense to watch non-stop. And, I don't think I am ever relaxed watching it....:)

I boycotted movies in the 80's so I understand your not wanting cable. I have live-in help here right now for teaching me all things hip. My 24 yo son took a job with a very large internet ad agency in Dallas and is temporarily back at home for a short period. He spends his spare time trying to re-introduce me to the world. He has shown me 24, Borat, text messaging, using a cell phone for all phone calls and losing the land line, etc. Also, considerable time is used to gaze at me in stark wonder at my ignorance of his world. FYI, last night the writers of 24 blew up a part of LA with a suitcase nuke. Who would want to miss that?