I am a creature of habit. The first thing I do every morning after I've plonked my bottom down in the command chair and booted my three computers is to set things up the way I like them.
In the case of my main tower computer -- the one on which I do the bulk of my work -- I have three 28-inch monitors configured so as to present me with a single honking big desktop as shown below.
Three 28-inch monitors forming a single desktop
(Click here to see a larger image.)
On the left-hand monitor I open an Excel spreadsheet in which I keep a record of all the columns I post (name, date, document ID number, author, etc.). Once I have this set up, I minimize it for later use and then bring my email system up on this screen.
The center display is where I perform my text and image editing activities. I typically have two Word documents open side-by side. "Behind" these will be a Paint.Net window, which will often be accompanied by a Visio window.
On the right-hand screen I open four Notepad text editor windows. The upper-left window is used to access my file of commonly-used HTML codes and shortcuts. The file in the lower-left window is where I keep track of which articles are to be posted in which carousels, which articles have yet to be Tweeted, and so forth. The bottom line is that these two Notepad windows always access the same files -- the other two Notepad windows are used on a temporary basis for specific activities.
Now, on the one hand, it doesn't take more than a couple of minutes to set all of this up before I move on to access my email and my day really starts to rock-and-roll. On the other hand, it's a pain in the rear end having to do this each and every day. What I would love would be to have a little script that I could invoke by double-clicking an icon on my desktop, and for this script to perform the following tasks:
- Launch an Excel window; make it fill the left-hand screen; use it to open my "articles" file.
- Launch a small Notepad window in the upper-left corner of the right-hand screen; use it to open my HTML codes file.
- Launch a larger Notepad window in the upper-middle of the right-hand screen.
- Launch another small Notepad window in the upper-right of the right-hand screen.
- Launch another larger Notepad window in the lower-left corner of the right-hand screen; use it to open my "articles to be tweeted" file.
Note that it's important that the four Notepad files be opened in the sequence I describe above. This is because I may have a bunch of other windows open -- perhaps showing additional graphic images or a calculator or other applications -- on this right-hand screen, so having the Notepad windows opened in a specific order allows me to easily select and access the window of interest when I move my mouse cursor over the Notepad icon in the Task Bar.
The problem is that I'm not an expert when it comes to the Windows 7 operating system -- I just use tools like Word and Excel a lot -- so I'm wondering if there is any way to create a script that can set my desktop up just the way I like it as described above. Do you have any ideas as to how I might achieve this?
— Max Maxfield, Editor of All Things Fun & Interesting