I have a laptop whose display does not work really well. I was wondering if there was some way I could connect the laptop to my desktop monitor and allow for mirroring/extending my laptp display to my deskop display. Ideally, I would like to work on my desktop computer and by switching workspaces on my desktop to start working on my laptop (display being on the desktop). I have Ubuntu 12.10 installed on both my desktop and laptop.
It sounds like you might want a KVM switch. They are devices that allow a single monitor, keyboard, and mouse to be used amongst multiple systems. Usually they have a key combination (they differ by each model, be sure to check the owner's manual). Once you press the key combination you can switch between different ports on the KVM switch.
I am not knowledgeable with Ubuntu but in Windows after you connect a desktop monitor to a laptop you can go to your display settings and choose which monitor is your main monitor and/or extend your desktop to the other monitor while keeping your laptop the main.