Here is my latest setup. I have four 24″ HD LED flat-panels, mounted on two Dual-Monitor Desk Mounts. I rotated the one on the right, as it makes reading cases and document easier. And no, the palm trees are not native to Houston, but they make for a nice backdrop.
You can tour the evolution of my multi-monitor dislays over the years.
From June 2010, back in Johnstown, PA. Note that I still had paper. I’ve gone completely paperless, and it is amazing. Also, since then I’ve gotten rid of my Blackberry, and Google Reader is no longer.
On my laptop screen, I keep my e-mail window open. On the far left monitor, I have Pandora open (playing some catchy Lady GaGa song), Tweetdeck (featuring 2 twitter accounts and facebook), and Adium Chat. In the middle monitor I have Microsoft Word open (working on an Op-Ed for McDonald v. Chicago). On the monitor on the right, I have Google Chrome open (tuned to Google Reader). And, my blackberry keeps me posted with text messages and BBM (blackberry messenger for those uninitiated).
From 2012, when I moved to Houston, still with three monitors:
From December 2012, during a brief period I kept two MacBook Pros rocking, and I added (yet another) monitor.
In case you are wondering, each screen has a dedicated function. My MacBook Pro screen is always trained on my gmail. The screen furthest to the left holds my Tweetdeck and Instant Messaging. The next screen to the right holds whatever document, or documents I am reading. The main screen in the middle contains whatever I am typing. The screen furthest to the right contains my Google Reader. My old Macbook Pro is used for ancillary stuff or testing things, and sometimes I will play a video or something on my Nexus 7 Tablet.
At this point my only limitation is furniture.
I do think Farhad Manjoo has a point when he notes that two screens are not better than one. But it depends what you’re doing. Sometimes, if I am focusing on one document, I will leave all my other monitors blank. Other times, when I’m blogging, and need to work with several items at once, the monitors are indispensable. It’s the only way to supertask.