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SuperNova for Trainers Course

6. Multiple Monitors

Overview

Welcome to the sixth lesson in the Trainer’s Course. In this lesson you’ll look at the different ways you can control magnification across multiple monitors and reflect upon the settings you may need to adjust for different scenarios.

Lesson objectives

After studying this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Correctly explain what is meant by Multiple Monitor support and describe how to configure Windows to support multiple monitors
  • Clearly state how you can move focus from one monitor to another using a SuperNova keyboard command.
  • Accurately describe the purpose of mouse resistance and the location of the setting within the SuperNova Control Panel.

This lesson should take no more than thirty minutes to complete.

This lesson applies to:

  • SuperNova Magnifier
  • SuperNova Magnifier & Speech.
  • SuperNova Magnifier & Screen Reader.

Why use multiple monitors?

Research claims that the most important benefit of using multiple monitors is the improved productivity, which comes from people being able to stay more focused and work more efficiently with two monitors rather than one.

Imagine being able to:

  • Expand a large multi-column spreadsheet so that you can view many more columns at a glance.
  • Keep an eye on incoming messages on one monitor while continuing to work on a document on a second monitor.
  • Watch a video presented on a webpage on one monitor while taking notes in a document on the second monitor.
  • Present a slideshow on one monitor while being able to view your presentation notes on a second monitor.

You may consider some of these examples helpful while others may not be so applicable. In all cases, it is particularly important to ensure you can view all the monitors in a healthy and ergonomic way to ensure you avoid fatigue.

Windows configuration

The setup of a secondary monitor in Windows 10 or Windows 11 is easy. Just plug-in the monitor into the available port on your computer and Windows will automatically extend your desktop across the monitors.

If you find Windows has chosen to duplicate your display on the secondary monitor rather than extend your desktop, then you can rectify this by pressing WINDOWS KEY + P to open the "Project" menu and choose "extend".

The "Project" menu contains the following options:

  • PC screen only: This option only shows the video output on the primary monitor. All other connected monitors will be unused.
  • Duplicate: This option duplicates the video output from the primary monitor on all the other monitors, which you may find useful if you wish to demonstrate something on your computer to colleagues.
  • Extend: This option extends your desktop across all available monitors, creating one large desktop, where you can move applications between them using the drag-and-drop method or by using the keyboard commands WINDOWS KEY + SHIFT + LEFT ARROW and RIGHT ARROW.
  • Second screen only: This mode shows video output only on the second display, while the primary display remains blank. You may wish to use this option if you want to switch from using a laptop display to a larger secondary monitor. You should also use this option over Duplicate because Windows will adapt the output perfectly to the secondary monitor instead of trying to stretch your primary display's resolution to fit.

Tip: You can choose which displays are the primary and secondary displays by going to your Windows Display Settings and select the "Identify" button. This will show a number on each display, representing its position. The primary monitor is number one and you can drag-and-drop the displays to change their physical position to match your setup.


Magnification across an extended desktop

SuperNova supports the Extended desktop and, although, you can make use of the other Project menu options, it is the Extended desktop that allows you to take full advantage of all SuperNova's Multiple Monitors features.

The following video introduces SuperNova with an extended desktop.

HubSpot Video

To recap on the SuperNova Multiple Monitor options, you can use when working with an extended desktop.

You can choose in the "Multiple Monitors" dialog box:

  • Span, which sets your monitors to show your desktop as a single large desktop. You may find this useful if you are viewing a lot of information in landscape, such as a worksheet with many columns as it gives you the chance to see more information at one time.
  • Side by side applications, which allows you to position different applications on different monitors, thus allowing you to easily take notes or monitor an application while you work in another.

You will find the following keyboard commands helpful when working with side-by-side applications.

Hotkeys

Function Hot Key
Jump mouse pointer to middle of next monitor CAPS LOCK + MIDDLE MOUSE BUTTON
Move application to the right monitor WINDOWS KEY + SHIFT + RIGHT ARROW
Move application to the left monitor WINDOWS KEY + SHIFT + LEFT ARROW

 

Presentation Mode

Also, as demonstrated in the previous video clip, you can choose "Presentation Mode". Presentation Mode allows you to have one monitor showing a magnified screen and the secondary monitors displaying an unmagnified screen. This is extremely useful if you are giving a presentation and want your audience to see a normal screen.

Furthermore, if you are using PowerPoint to give your presentation and have enabled PowerPoint's "Use Presenter's View", then you can magnify your presentation notes on your monitor while the audience watches an unmagnified slideshow. You can also choose what monitor displays your slideshow and what monitor displays your view. None of SuperNova's Colour Schemes, Mouse Pointers, Highlighting and other visual effects will appear on the monitor displaying the presentation.

And finally, here's a brief description on some of those additional settings available in the "Multiple Monitors" dialog box:

  • Mouse Buffer, allows you to prevent the accidental movement of your mouse pointer onto another monitor when you are using an extended desktop. You achieve this by creating a level of resistance at the screen edge, which means you require additional force to move the mouse pointer onto another monitor. You can adjust the level of resistance the buffer creates by using the "Resistance" slider.
  • Switch monitor hot key, allows you to jump the mouse pointer from one monitor to the next, without panning the magnification away from the area of the screen you are currently viewing. This is especially useful if you are copy typing information from one application to another. The default hot key to perform this command is CAPS LOCK + MIDDLE MOUSE BUTTON but you can use the related options to assign an alternative hot key to this command.
  • Allow different magnification sizes on each monitor, allows you to have independent levels of magnification on each of your monitors. This is useful for instance when you have two monitors of different sizes and you need a little extra magnification on the smaller monitor, or when magnifying smaller text in an application on one of your secondary monitors.
  • Independent colours, allows you to have independent colour schemes on each of your monitors. This is useful for instance when you have applications on each monitor that require you to use different Colour Schemes.

Tip: When you make your SuperNova magnification level and colours independent, in SuperNova's control panel the monitor number that the magnification level and colour settings belong to will be displayed in the "Visual" property sheet, (directly underneath the magnification "Size" control).


Exercises

Please complete Exercise 6 in the SuperNova for Trainers Workbook.

If you have not downloaded this supplementary document, please click here to download the SuperNova for Trainers Workbook. 

Summary

In this lesson you learnt about the potential benefits from using multiple monitors and the process you must follow to setup secondary monitors within the Windows operating system. You also learnt about the options within SuperNova that enable you to control magnification across the monitors including the ability to set independent magnification sizes and colour schemes.

This lesson brings training on the magnification and visual options available with SuperNova to a close. In the upcoming lessons you’ll be learning about the speech and screen reader features within SuperNova and Dolphin ScreenReader.

Quiz

Below are three sample quiz questions based on this lesson. Please spend no more than five minutes considering the answers to these questions.

  1. The SuperNova Multiple Monitor feature supports the Extended desktop option in the Windows Project menu setting. Is this statement true?
  2. SuperNova enables you to set different magnification sizes on different monitors. Is this statement true?
  3. Pressing WINDOWS KEY + SHIFT + RIGHT ARROW will move the current application to the next monitor to the right. Is this statement true?

End of lesson

Thank you for completing this lesson. Please select 'Next Lesson' below to continue to the next part of this course.

To revisit a previous lesson, please scroll to the top of this page and choose the lesson from the Course Outline menu.


But before you move on, here are the answers to the quiz questions:

  1. True.
  2. True.
  3. True.

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