Interfacing with your computer is a decidedly individual problem, a problem which a great many (read: almost all) computer users sail through life without examining. When you work in front of a monitor for 8+ hours a day, however, and you must maximize efficiency in order to get your tasks done (in a timely fashion without causing yourself subtle damage), it behooves you to sit back and think for a while about your user interface. I’m not just talking about your window manager, or your use of desktop widgets and thingets to channel information from the bowels of your computer into your eyeballs (although those are all worthy topics in their own right), I’m talking about the hardware.
Look down. No, really, look down at your hands right now. Odds are pretty good that you’re still using the same 101-enhanced style keyboard that dates, oh, back to the time when VT-100 terminals were de rigueur for gearheads and the personal computer was just becoming a reality. If you’re an outside the box user, you may use a Dvorak layout instead of a Qwerty layout (I personally never found the transition to be useful in net gain, so I never became a Dvorak-user). For my workstation, I use a Kinesis Classic and/or a Kinesis Advantage, because I find that the standard keyboard layout (this holds true even for Dvorak) puts undo strain on my pinkies. With my Kinesis, I have the CTRL key mapped to my left thumb, because I use it probably more than any other key with the exception of ENTER (which is happily my right thumb). I use a trackball instead of a mouse, although to be honest the pointer device on my computer is not an area of happiness for me -> all mice-ing type of devices are HORRIBLY horrible.
If anyone has suggestions for a mouse device that they find actually enjoyable to use, please let me know.