Finally, the Perfect Desk?

Last night I dropped the family off at my parents' house in Mansfield and went over to the PC World Megastore they have there now. Got to say I'm impressed. I've never liked PC World but the store is geek heaven. I could easily have spent an hour or more just mincing around playing with all the kit.

I was there in search of a wireless keyboard. I left empty-handed as none of them had a decent quality feel to them. As it happens I like the keyboard I have (a Lenovo), so I decided to make it "wireless" with the help of a drill:

2011-07-06 08.52.21

The hole is 10mm in diameter, but I needed a chisel to shave some of the plastic off the USB connector to get it through.

As you can see below it's had the desired effect, while saving me money and having to worry about battery charge. Bonus.

2011-07-06 09.05.59

In effect, all mice and keyboard are now wireless and the desk is a lot less cluttered.

Notice the Mac has two mice! After getting the Magic TrackPad and realising it's not a full-time mouse I bought a Magic Mouse too. Now I can't decide between them so have them both in use. It actually works quite well having both - one for use by each hand.

The Mac spends most of its time being used for iTunes and Twitter, so I can now easily control it using my left hand with the trackpad.

As part of this tidy-up exercise I retired the 10 year old mouse I mentioned a while back. In its place there's a Logitech Performance MX mouse, which I'm very impressed with so far.

For now I'm fairly happy with my desk. If budget allowed I'd like to upgrade my monitor, but I don't have the IT budget for it this year. Maybe next year. I'll keep you posted.

Is it the perfect desk though? Not really. The only way I could ever achieve this state of desk nirvana would be if I could make a choice between Windows or Mac and then just have one machine with a single KVM. I can't opt for one over the other though.

Can't help thinking the desk is missing one of these though, which I was playing with in store last night... I've spent more than I ever thought possible on mice in the last month though, so I might have to wait for Christmas.


  1. Before you spend $$ on a sound system, I'd advise upgrading that chair.

    Desk looks beautiful, but the layout with the monitors on the left there is going to cause you to twist slightly all day long.

    A high-end office chair will help support your back and shoulders properly.

    Trust me on this, I've spent way too many days in in pain due to a less-than-optimal chair.

    PS. Nice view and natural light.

      • avatar
      • Jake Howlett
      • Wed 6 Jul 2011 07:05 AM

      I only twist to the left from time to time and never for too long. Spend most the day facing forward.

      What would I upgrade the chair to? It's a Herman Miller Aeron chair. About the most expensive (best?) chair you can get. I got it on ebay half price after consuluting you guys back when I built the office. http://www.codestore.net/store.nsf/unid/BLOG-20080429

      Touch wood it's served me well so far...


      Show the rest of this thread

  2. Re: Herman Miller Aeron chair - that chair is made right here in Grand Rapids. It is also on my "must have" list.

    • avatar
    • CJ
    • Wed 6 Jul 2011 12:54 PM

    Hey look, you have a wireless drill too! ;)

      • avatar
      • Jake Howlett
      • Wed 6 Jul 2011 02:22 PM

      Reminds me of when my wife's friend boasted she had a cordless screwdriver and I pointed out that *all* my screwdrivers were cordless.

    • avatar
    • Palmi
    • Wed 6 Jul 2011 02:58 PM

    Jake, I have 21.5 " Imac that i use to do my work, I remote into my Foundation SERVER where i have Production servers in MW and I have Paraells on Imac to to My DEV stuff . Highly recommend this. my next step it to get 27 " Apple to extend my workspace


      • avatar
      • Jake Howlett
      • Thu 7 Jul 2011 03:10 AM

      My only issue with this approach is that it's not portable. I like my main machine to be a laptop. Would a Macbook Pro with 8GB ram (I assume that's the max) be able to perform with a Windows 7 VM that would want at least half that RAM?

      The other issue is that - deep down - I still prefer Windows. I just find I'm more productive on it.

    • avatar
    • Aaron Hardin
    • Thu 7 Jul 2011 07:39 AM

    Your chair is very similar to mine, and I agree its great! The only thing I would change is have my main machine dual screen so that the split was directly in front of you. I don't think I could function without it.

    Looks good until the first bit of hardware work where you need the desk space as a workbench :)

      • avatar
      • Jake Howlett
      • Thu 7 Jul 2011 08:27 AM

      Hey Aaron, where you been? Was worried I was losing even my most ardent of followers.

    • avatar
    • Jono
    • Fri 8 Jul 2011 05:03 AM

    Nice clean desk Jake! Bet it doesn't look like that for long when you get your scraps of notepads and old coffee mugs everywhere like mine!!

    Although I love all things Bose (the audi bose sound system rocks), I have used these Harman Kardon Soundsticks on my PC for years and they are brilliant and half the price of the Bose set...


  3. If you're into sound, I have this


    which I can heartily recommend. A lotttie lottie better sound quality than bose. They have a really good 8 week trial at home option which is free (apart from shipping costs

    P.S. To establish my sound credentials, I have a high-end meridian system in my living room.

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