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 1. Field of the Invention
 The present invention relates to a computer workstation and, more specifically, to a computer desk providing ergonomic positioning of computer peripherals and ergonomic access to same.
 2. Description of Related Art
 It has been widely recognized that many people who work at a desk for lengthy periods each day suffer back and neck strain, fatigue, and other discomforts as a result of the non-ergonomic placement of computer peripherals and accessories in relation to a working person's seating position. This concern for the health of users occupying computer workstations has resulted in the establishment of minimal ergonomic standards. Protecting the eyesight, posture, arms, and fingers of workstation users was recognized as being in the best interest of the employers, as it can lead to a more productive work force with greater longevity and less down time due to disability, such as carpal tunnel syndrome. Additionally, the implications of physical injury could prove to be costly in the form of lawsuits and legal settlements.
 A computer's primary components, namely, a CPU housing, a monitor, a keyboard, and a mouse, have retained relatively the same physical dimensions for years, without emphasizing ergonomics in their design. This has resulted in manufacturers producing ergonomic computer desk furniture to accommodate such components. Typical workstations providing features directed towards ergonomic use in relation to these components are disclosed in U.S. Pat. No. 6,298,794 to Brown et. al. and U.S. Pat. No. 5,483,902 to Grosch. Although these prior art computer workstations provide a user with some flexibility in placement and use of the components, the prior art suffers from drawbacks, in that sacrifices are made in terms of available desktop and storage space, ease of access to computer-related peripherals (e.g., printers), accessories (e.g., CD/DVD-ROM discs), and printed matter (e.g., manuals), etc. For example, the '794 patent does not provide enough desktop and storage space to support more than a keyboard and mouse. Similarly, the '902 patent, although disclosing adjustable height settings for the keyboard and the monitor, also includes shelving that requires the user to uncomfortably stretch upwards and downwards to access the CPU housing and printer, for example. Additionally, prior art computer workstations incorporating ergonomic elements into their design have not been viewed as aesthetically pleasing office furniture.
 Accordingly, what is needed and has not heretofore been developed is an ergonomic computer desk having an uncompromising, aesthetic, and intuitive configuration, thereby providing the user with ergonomic access to the computer and any related peripherals, accessories, and printed matter.
 It is an object of the present invention to overcome the aforementioned drawbacks of the prior art. The present invention provides, in a preferred embodiment, a computer desk, which allows for more efficient workflow, by applying basic ergonomic and human factor principles to its design. In addition to minimizing the user's efforts required in reaching items upon or within the desk structure, the computer desk allows the user to adjust the monitor height by utilizing an intuitive and versatile ladder-like frame structure.
 The objects of the present invention are achieved by providing a computer desk structure including a work surface having an opening therein. A ladder-like frame is positioned in the opening with the ladder-like frame extending from a floor below the work surface, through the opening, and further extending past the work surface. Shelves may be attached to opposing rungs of the ladder-like frame for supporting various items, such as a computer monitor or a CD/DVD-ROM library. By having the option of attaching the shelves to various rungs, the ladder-like frame allows for monitor height adjustability. Similarly, smaller shelves and/or cabinets may be attached outwardly to individual rungs of the ladder-like frame. The smaller shelves and/or cabinets may support various items, such as a pair of computer speakers. Additionally, a footrest may be attached at the base of the ladder-like frame to provide the user with proper foot posture.
 It is another object of the present invention to maximize free space on the work surface while placing components within easy reach of the user. This is accomplished by making the footprint of the desk concave-shaped and by positioning shelves and cabinets throughout the desk structure in an ergonomic manner. Raised shelves above the work surface provide additional storage areas without interfering with the free space on the work surface.
 It is yet another object of the present invention to provide the user with optimal degrees of wrist abduction/adduction and forearm supination/pronation in the use of the computer desk.
 The preferred embodiment of the present invention comprises floor-based desk additions that may be positioned at either end of the work surface. These variously configured desk additions include, but are not limited to, cabinets, drawers, and shelving. The aforementioned additions are adapted to accommodate a wide variety of computing and desk essentials, while placing such essentials within ergonomic reach of the user. For example, placement of the CPU housing on top of a designated cabinet and placement of the printer on a designated shelf reduces strain to the user's wrist, arms, and back when accessing such components and peripherals.
 An alternative embodiment of the present invention includes a planar surface extending the vertical length of the ladder-like frame and being affixed thereto, wherein the planar surface is designed to aesthetically route cables and wires leading to and from the computer components and peripherals.
 These and other advantages of the present invention will be understood from the description of the preferred embodiment taken together with the accompanying drawings, wherein like reference numerals represent like elements throughout.
 In the drawings:
 For purposes of the description hereinafter, the terms “front”, “rear”, “left”, “right”, “top”, “bottom”, “vertical”, “horizontal”, and derivatives thereof shall relate to the invention as it is oriented in the drawing figures. However, it is to be understood that the invention may assume various alternative variations, except where expressly specified to the contrary. It is also to be understood that the specific apparatus illustrated in the attached drawings, and described in the following specification, is simply an exemplary embodiment of the invention. Hence, specific dimensions and other physical characteristics related to the embodiments disclosed herein are not to be considered as limiting.
 An ergonomic computer desk
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 The present invention has been described with reference to the preferred embodiments. Obvious modifications, combinations, and alterations will occur to others upon reading the preceding detailed description. It is intended that the invention be construed as including all such modifications, combinations, and alterations insofar as they come within the scope of the appended claims or the equivalents thereof.