Correct Tech Posture
I'm all for new technology. I "ooh" and "aah" over friends' new Macs or iPhones. They're certainly sleek and look like a lot of fun. However, as a penny pincher, I don't wish to spend my money on these fancy toys.
I finally got an iPod about 3 years ago. I absolutely love it and I couldn't imagine life without it, but my iPod holds less than 500 songs. I've had to delete a lot of songs recently to make room for new ones. Still, I don't want to shell out the money for a new iPod that holds more songs.
My phone is a simple LG. It's not a touch screen, it doesn't have a keypad. Really, I'm lucky it has a camera!
But the oldest gadget I have has got to be my laptop. I got her the summer before I went to college, and we have spent 7 years together ... that's a pretty long time in computer years! We've been through a lot together, and it's safe to say that my poor little laptop has seen better days. She is incredibly slow, to the point where if I want to open up Firefox, I click on the icon, go do something else and then come back a few minutes later -- and then it's finally open!
But despite the fact that I really could use a new computer and really have a need for one, I still won't spend money on it. I keep telling friends that I'll get a new one when my current one dies.
The problem with this is that my poor little laptop is so old, if she isn't getting air directly to her fan, she overheats and then she shuts down -- without any warning and no matter what I'm doing. And then I usually can't turn her on again for a few hours.
So whenever I want to use my computer, I need to make sure the fan is not covered up, which can lead to some interesting positions and, inevitably, bad posture.
I probably don't have great posture to begin with -- maybe its part of my generation; my mom was always telling me to stand or sit up straight. But the use of laptops has greatly hurt the posture of technology-loving (or just tolerating) folks.
And for laboratory professionals, who already need to worry about proper ergonomics when leaning over testing instruments or lifting heavy equipment, proper posture is key.
When using a laptop, the McKinley Health Center at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign suggests the computer be at eye level with an external keyboard and a mouse positioned at your elbow; this will help prevent neck pain.
Do you have any tips and trips for proper ergonomics when using laptops and iPads? Share them here.