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Tech Thursday: Reducing Eyestrain from Screentime
Free programs to easily adjust monitor light & warmth settings.
Working and teaching from home equals many hours in front of the computer. One of the best things I did over the past year was to purchase a second monitor and learn how to adjust lighting settings to make all the screen time a little less hard on my eyes.
There are two free programs that I use to easily adjust monitor light settings. The first is Twinkle Tray. Once installed, it provides an easy and simple way to change the brightness settings without navigating through the computer settings windows. You can either click the icon in the system tray, or assign keyboard shortcuts - I use CTRL+up/down arrows to control one monitor, and CTRL+R/L arrows to control the second monitor.
A second program I’ve started using is f.lux. Once installed, you enter your location and the program uses sunrise/sunset times to auto-adjust the warmth of the monitor to reduce blue light in the early morning and evenings. You can choose custom colors as well, if you prefer a warmer setting during the day.
A final tip is no-tech: the 20/20/20 rule. Every 20 minutes, look for 20 seconds at something 20 feet away. I use the alarm settings on my watch to set aside blocks of “work uninterrupted” time where I don’t open email or check my phone, and if I feel my eyes getting particularly tired I will set 20-minute reminders for a few hours mid-day so that I do take more regular screen breaks.
Past Tech Thursdays
How to Zoom in in Zoom
DropBox Paper for collaboration
Providing audio feedback
Mailbird email program
Wheel of Names (random name generator)