A pen-based computer including a housing and a flat display integral therewith. The flat display can display an image corresponding to text, data and graphic information in several orientations. A plurality of switches enables the user to select an orientation for the image relative to the orientation of the flat display. In one embodiment the switches are mercury switches positioned to automatically align the orientation of the image relative to motion of the flat panel display relative to the force of gravity. An optional additional switch resets the orientation of the image to a predetermined orientation or prevents the reorientation of the image responsive to the mercury switches.