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How to make a “command and control” center for working with your documents

4 Sep 2008 | | No Comment

Ever encounter the problem where you’re reading, writing, and publishing more than one document at the same time?  

Rhetorical question!

You know the scenario — you’ve got multiple windows open — all stacked on top of each other, you’re alt-tabbing applications to the point of arth-thumb-ritis. Even with 2 x 21″ screens and your Intel® Core™2 Extreme processor QX9770, you feel like you’re driving your Ferrari F430 Spider with the hand-break on.

Well, a quick and easy solution to this problem is to pick yourself up a copy of Desktop Rover™ v4.0. You will need multiple computers, but like most, you probably have an old laptop, desktop or more lying around which you could resurrect for this purpose.

Essentially you sit the laptop and/or PCs  side-by-side and with Desktop Rover™ v4.0 installed — after configuration, you then use a single mouse/keyboard to control both computers. As you shift the mouse across the edge of the screen on one computer, it magically appears on the other adjacent machine. 

I like to think of it as the equivalent of a civillian military-style command center, but for documents.

To make it document-workflow-workable — you spread the applications over all screens, for example: your editor on one (say Word) and your PDF viewer, then your web-browser and Windows Explorer on the other. With each of these spread across an array of screens you can concurrently view and edit most of what you’re working with, as well as look at the final format (usually PDF, but XPS also). Of course, the way in which you order your applications is completely up to you

In addition — copying the clipboard and files between the two is a breeze, or if you use a shared hard disk, then it’s short-work to set yourself up a workspace-workflow of editing, publishing and reading of documentation/manuals.

At $48 for a 2 computer license, it’s well worth the spend … and provides the day-to-day operational change that does make the ‘paperless-office’ much more of a reality. And FWIW, if you’re a real king-pin and have a multitude of concurrent documents in production, then you can add up to 32 computers (nice for some, hey).

Update: a reader has kindly pointed out a free alternative to Desktop Rover called Synergy, which lets you share a single mouse and keyboard between multiple computers with different operating systems.

Note: Other than browsing the website, buying the software, finding it very useful, I have no affiliation whatsoever with Neslo Software.

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