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The problem with bifocals and progressive lenses is that they assume you are looking down to see close objects...
I wear progressive lenses and they work very, very well with my laptop + external monitor setup. The key is properly positioning the monitors. Yes, the monitor needs to be lower than you may have positioned it prior to needing reading glasses; but, it's really not a problem to position the laptop and external monitor to accommodate this.
"Our vision is to speed up time, eventually eliminating it." -- Alex Schure