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I would like to know if there is any recommendations about how far from the computer screen it is good (healthy) to sit when I work in front of the computer long days. In an ergonomic perspective.

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For those voting to close as off-topic, I do find this a useful topic and made it Community Wiki since I don't expect anyone to post scientific evidence for the correct postion and location behind a computer ;-) –  Ivo Flipse Apr 28 '10 at 7:00
    
@Ivo: very similar to (possible duplicate of) superuser.com/questions/133639/… –  quack quixote Apr 28 '10 at 19:35
    
@quack: Meeh I should just create one CW question about ergonomics and put everything in it. Everyone asks the same in a slightly different manner :-( –  Ivo Flipse Apr 28 '10 at 20:39
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4 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

This page which turned up on a search for "ideal distance from computer monitor" states:

viewing distance - the monitor should be at a comfortable horizontal distance for viewing, which usually is around an arms length (sit back in your chair and raise your arm and your fingers should touch the screen). At this distance you should be able to see the viewing area of the monitor without making head movements. If text looks too small then either use a larger font or magnify the screen image in the software rather than sitting closer to the monitor.

Which isn't definitive, but does raise the good point about adjusting the screen resolution and/or font sizes rather than moving closer to (or further from) the screen.

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It depends on the eye sight of the person. Some feel comfort sitting closer to the screen. While for some it will be to sit far.

But in normal case (with small monitor) a minimum of one arm distance (30 cm) is to be between our eyes and the monitor.

(The distance should increase as the height of the monitor increase)

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I think that is is best to sit pretty close to the computer, i sit about 10-15cm away from the monitor otherwise my eyes get pretty sore, and everything is blury. My eyesight is so-so, but hasnt got worse in a few years. Most of my friends sit like this too, seems to be the best distance on a 17" screen. I usually go back about 1cm for each inch bigger

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You're in urgent need of seeing the eye-doctor and may need special eyeglasses for working with computer screens. You may also expose yourself to excessive electromagnetic radiation. –  harrymc Jun 13 '10 at 10:44
    
Hey Harrymc. I actully have glasses for distance but dont wear them very often. I find it most comfortable to sit close to the screen as do many others. Cheers –  Tom Jun 15 '10 at 1:13
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This is terrible advice. You should wear your glasses when you're on the computer instead of frying your eyes. –  Sasha Chedygov Nov 30 '10 at 6:05
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I've asked the same question before. It appears the "one arm rule" to be in place. However I tend to disagree for larger displays like 20+". Wikipedia also has a nice article about calculating viewing angles, distances and field of view.

And my own adapted rule for screens above 14" is: distance = 1.5 * screen diagonal.

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