Tech Friday: MacBook Air M2, Spaces and portable displays

Posted By on September 8, 2023

One of my social media contacts who knows that I’ve been using computers to monitor investments and trade for decades heard me mention that I switched to Old iMac Setupa tiny MacBook Air M2 from a 27” PC display (iMac with a second Thunderbolt Apple display running Windows 10 on Parallels). He asked how it was possible to do the same thing on a small MacBook without Parallels and on such a small monitor? 

Admittedly is was a concern of mine too … enough so that I originally tried to run Windows on Parallels on the MacBook Air M2 (failed) and tried a dongle connected to the OLD 27” Apple Thunderbolt Display — it didn’t work even with a dongle because it was too old. So I’m now finally going without Windows and added an inexpensive portable UPerfect 18.5” USB-C hub powered/connected display (the CocoPar smaller display in Florida has a better image and better brightness). But what really makes things work is learning to use Spaces (Desktops) efficiently in order to handle whatever your daily workload might be. For me, I run 4-spaces giving me 8 separate display views for different purposes (and likely eventually a fifth).

  1. Investing “space” running IB Trader Workstation on larger “upper” screen,
  2. Web, multiple email tabs, reading and writing, spreadsheets, business bookkeeping, basic computing, etc,
  3. Programming, blog writing on MarsEdit, server terminal access and cloud management “space,” 
  4. Graphics and photo editing … mostly GIMP instead of Photoshop these day. I can see eventually AI is going to need a separate “space” since I’m forcing myself to learn more about it (probably “space” 5)? 

MacBook Air M2 with portable 18.5

The downside is that the IB Trader Workstation “hides” when flipping to different “Spaces” but alerts and triggers are helpful. For now … above is my “side” desk set-up … I’m still running the iMac and second display on my main desk (photo at the top), but I’m slowly shifting to the MacBook Air M2 for more and more. The 2012 iMac is getting a little long in the tooth anyway. 


Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.
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