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Software Process for using multiple monitors with an operating system

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000132001D
Original Publication Date: 2005-Nov-28
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Nov-28
Document File: 1 page(s) / 22K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

When using 2 or more monitors with a PC, most of the time only 1 monitor is actually the focus of the User's attention. This wastes electricity and may be distracting as well to the user. Proposed is a software program running on the system which shuts down displays determined to be not currently in use. Shutdown would mean enter a sleep state, low power mode, or blank the display.

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Software Process for using multiple monitors with an operating system

Software running on the system would perform three main tasks.

First, the software would track usage patterns involving the various displays and determine when a display is not being used. When this condition is determined, the monitor would be added to the set of inactive monitors. That monitor would be placed in a standby or low-power mode. These conditions could include:
1) Tracking the mouse location and how long it has been since the mouse has been placed on a given display
2) Tracking window focus and the display on which a window lies.

User defined thesholds could be configured for both of these rules.

Second, the software would modify the behavior of the OS. This could include things such as:
1) Preventing the mouse from being position on an inactive display. By hooking into the OS, the program could limit the mouse's range of motion to the active displays. The mouse placement is essentially clipped to the active displays. If the user tries repeatedly or in an exaggerated way to reach the inactive display, that display would be made active again, and the mouse could extend into that area of the "desktop"
2) Filtering the applications presented by the window manager, or presenting them at the end of the list. If an application lies within an inactive monitor, it may be filtered or presented differently than applications which are actively being used.

Third, allowing deactivated displays to b...