Summer’s here! Get some fresh air!

One of the things a good Digital Coach should do is to make people’s work lives more comfortable and healthy.  So here’s a tip that should help get you out of the dull office environment.

I decided to take my office outside the other day and work in the fresh air for a change. Was I in for a surprise!

I sat at our coffee nook, opened up the laptop and wondered why I couldn’t see anything on the screen. Then I moved closer to the screen and could barely make out the login screen. There was just enough sun coming through the trees that my eyes adjusted for that and made the relatively dim screen even dimmer!

So, I went on an internet hunt to find a solution. I searched for “laptop umbrellas” and found this interesting article…

You can see the post on Free Ideas Space.  It’s definitely an interesting use of, hopefully, an old laptop but not exactly what I was looking for.

I continued that search for a few minutes and found lots of laptop bags that come with regular umbrellas for rainy days, but nothing that I was looking for.

I changed my search terms to “using a laptop outdoors” and had a little better luck.  I found lots of folks talking about the problem of using a laptop with a glossy screen outside, and a few tips.

Thomas N. Burg had this unique, and inexpensive device posted on his blog.  He calls it a “Sunbox”. I’m sure it works well.  I’ll let you decide if you want to  use something like this.

I did find lots of forum and blog posts with people asking the same questions and getting the same answers – move to a shady location (easily done), get a laptop with an anti-glare screen (expensive), put the laptop away and have a beer!  One person did suggest adjusting the screen brightness.  Why didn’t I think of that!?

So I did.  After setting the brightness slider to the maximum level I could see the screen a little better – it was usable.  Unfortunately, setting the screen brighter will draw more power from the battery and reduce how long you can use your laptop without plugging in.

Here is another source I found with some tips for using a laptop in the great outdoors – Web Work Daily