Change Screen Resolution:
Have you ever sat so very close to your television screen that you could see individual colored dots? Those dots are called pixels (a shortened form of ‘picture elements’) and their number determines how clearly the TV images display. Computer monitors work with pixels the same way.
An image on screen is not a picture like a photograph, where it’s all one element from side to side and top to bottom. Images on TV, movies, and computer displays are comprised of thousands of tiny pixels that paint the screen individually, putting exactly the right shade of the right color in exactly the right spot on screen. The completed image you see is actually a composition of carefully programmed pixels.
Many of today’s favorite computer applications call for vivid color and sharp contrast to achieve the vibrant images and life-like action scenes we’ve gotten so used to seeing. Online games, movies, and TV shows would appear flat, fuzzy, and faded out if your computer’s display wasn’t set to display as many pixels as these programs need for optimum viewing.
The number of pixels displayed per unit of measure (often a square inch) is known as screen resolution. The more pixels per unit (the higher the screen resolution), the sharper the image on display. Website developers use pixels when they create web pages and we see these pages most clearly when our computer display is set at the same screen resolution the programmer used when he coded the page. When there is a discrepancy between programmer’s pixel count and your computer’s, image quality will suffer. Fortunately, it’s very easy to adjust the pixel density (screen resolution) on a computer monitor.
To change screen resolution on a PC, simply click the ‘start’ button and scroll up through the pop-up menu to the ‘settings’ option. From here, open the ‘control panel.’ In the window that pops up here, choose the ‘display’ option then the ‘settings’ option. You’ll now see your screen resolution options. You may choose pixels by number (800×600, for example, which means there will be 800 horizontal pixels and 600 vertical pixels displayed in each unit of measure) or drag your mouse over a sliding bar until the desired resolution is displayed on the example screen in the window.
Computers are shipped from the factory with screen resolution established as a default setting. This default is often the most appropriate choice for meeting the common user’s needs but it’s OK to explore and experiment with different screen resolutions. You can always change screen resolution to another setting or back to the default without affecting anything else on the computer.
Working with the control panel sure beats the heck out of sitting too close and counting all those teeny, tiny pixels, don’t you think?