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  • by Zed (5337) on 2004.09.27 11:57 (#34727) Homepage

    Yes, it's RSI. It's your body's way of saying you need to be doing some things differently. Here's an article [] I wrote on it.

    And you can't win an argument with your body, 'cause it holds all the trump cards. You can say "but I only have a laptop"... and it can up the pain. You can say "but I can't fit a full-size keyboard in my bag"... and it can up the pain.

    BTW, a laptop's small keyboard is probably only part of the issue. Most people end up using a laptop in a hunched-over position with their head hanging down to look at the screen that's way below eye-level. If you pursue the full-size auxiliary keyboard route, look into getting one of those frames that elevate a laptop's screen to a reasonable level (or stack it on top of books or something...) You'll need an alternative pointing device if you do this, too, of course.

    But I like to stress that while ergonomic equipment is much better than unergonomic equipment, you can get injured with either if you're using them badly. Good posture and taking breaks are key, and no equipment can keep you safe if you hunch over it for hours at a time.

    (I spent months in non-stop pain from RSI, so I tend to jump up and down at people developing its symptoms in the hopes they'll take it seriously and change things.)