Laptop stands

My School have bought a Trust Portable Notebook Stand for me to use for my tablet in classes. This gives me a bit of additional height and a slope to work with, which should help a bit with the “bending right over the tablet” issue. (I don’t think that a view of the back of my head is particularly useful for the students or in my recordings.)

I could do with a bit more height, though, for the tablet. Today I tried using a cardboard box  (!) but my laptop didn’t like the resulting vibrations when I was writing. I had lots of problems with the presentation, and didn’t know why. Fortunately an observant student pointed out to me (thanks!) that my tablet kept going into hard disk protection mode.

No more cardboard boxes for me! I could use a big heavy book or two … but more likely I will use some form of monitor riser or a similar stand for a bit of extra height, if we can get something suitable.

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3 responses to “Laptop stands

  1. OK, today’s lecture was in a room where the only surface I could use for my tablet was one of the student desks.
    On top of this I formed a tower with
    – one screen riser
    – two heavy duty box files, and
    – one large book.
    On top of this tower I placed the notebook stand.
    Although this setup is a lot more stable than the cardboard box I used yesterday, I still have to be a little gentle while writing. But this probably helps me to focus on writing a little more slowly and carefully, which is probably a good thing.
    All this to improve the students’ view when I have to write on the tablet. The good news is that the students I asked said that this is a big improvement. So maybe it is all worth it after all. However, I’m not sure that I want to broadcast video of my strange tower worldwide!

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  2. We have now ordered some stacking plastic storage boxes, which I am going to try out to get some extra height.
    We went for these ones:
    http://www.plasticboxshop.co.uk/10lt-stack-and-store-box-pack-of-10-338-p.asp
    For the colour, we have gone for light blue, AKA “blueberry”.
    I may use these to help with the webcam height too.
    I will report back on how I get on with these. Future videos may well feature some version of my laptop tower, possibly in glorious blueberry!

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  3. Well, my “blueberry” boxes have arrived. They are a respectable light blue. Perhaps a tiny bit deeper would have been even better, but certainly they fit in front of the sympodium panel. If I want double height, the default method of stacking the boxes is not very secure. I have used bluetack to provide extra strength. I’m also using bluetack to attach the box/boxes to the surface. This works very well!
    On Friday I used the laptop on the notebook stand on top of a two-box tower. When I get overexcited and I write too fast (and press too hard) the laptop still goes into hard disk protection mode. But as long as I concentrate on writing a bit more slowly, gently and carefully, it works very well.
    I haven’t got time at the moment to produce more videos: too many deadlines. (You know what Douglas Adams said about deadlines?) But in due course you can expect to see the tower in action!
    Perhaps someone knows a more sensible solution?
    Ideally, every lecture theatre would have a suitable stand to put the laptop on, and a spotlight for the presenter, so that the room lights could be low without spoiling the webcam video!
    There are heavy duty wooden music stands that would do the first part of the job, but these are not really portable. Maybe I can persuade the University to buy some to put in some of the lecture theatres?
    Meanwhile, I have ten blue boxes, and I am unlikely to need more than four at a time (two for the laptop, two for the webcam). So those on my project might be interested in using some of the boxes too!

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