What does your screensaver say about you?
Can your screensaver make you less stressed and more productive, and does it reveal a lot about your personality? Matt Henkes investigates.
A recent study has revealed that viewing certain screensavers can help workers battle the ill effects of workplace stress and even enhance their productivity.
The research found that people who had scenic scenes on their computers were able to reduce their stress levels by up to 30%. However, there are fundamental flaws in the notion that having the right screensaver can boost productivity, as one indignant colleague pointed out.
"If I ever see my screensaver it’s because I'm returning from a meeting and have sat down to unlock it before continuing with my work," he fumed. "I'd have to fall asleep at my keyboard for it to appear in front of me." Perhaps, with that in mind, screensavers should come equipped with wake-up alarms.
Your screensaver can reveal a lot about the sort of person you are, so we’ve categorised some of the various types:
Landscapes and scenery
Many people use a picturesque landscape of the Norwegian ice fjords, the Swiss Alps or Arizona desert, but does staring out at a beautiful foreign setting from the confines of an office smack somewhat of masochism? According to the research, apparently not.
As one sales executive pointed out, what can be more inspirational than catching a glimpse of your young daughter to remind you why you slog your guts out day after day? Alternatively, an image of the nagging mother in-law can be great motivation for putting in those long evening hours.
Some people find it difficult to get into the spirit of screensavery. You will never see these people with a plant on their desk or tinsel around their computer at Christmas time. Their screensaver is merely a functional tool to prolong the life of their monitor.
They're fluffy and cuddly, and they make you feel all warm inside. How can work ever get on top of you when every time you return to your desk, a doe-eyed little bunny rabbit is staring back at you?
The great outdoors
Leaves, flowers, lilies and anything green can transport you away from your desk and into some exotic botanical garden. You'll often see artistic depictions of varying seasonal persuasion, wintery scenes or golden autumnal vistas. Very popular with green-fingered individuals and hippies.
The marquee and its many guises can deliver a stylish, witty or offensive message to anyone walking past your desk. It can even provide an ego boost by deluding you into thinking that your computer really does think you’re 'FAB'. Alternatively, the classic 'get the hell out of my office' is always a winner.
What's your screensaver of choice and why? It doesn't matter whether it fits into these categories or not. Leave your comments below.