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What's your work environment like?

Greg Charles
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Joined: Oct 01, 2001
Posts: 2851
    
  11

In my 20 years' experience as a software developer, I've found that my typical work environment seems out of whack with my other compensation. I have a small office now, but no windows. My desk is typical wood-grained plastic veneer over particle board and my chair seems to be one of the nicer models available from WalMart. In previous jobs, I've almost always been in cubicles, sometimes tiny ones, or worse, just a desk in a big open room. In other words, even though in terms of financial compensation I'm easily in the top 10%, I'm pretty much just a well-paid head of cattle. I wonder if that's typical for software developers?
Joe Ess
Bartender

Joined: Oct 29, 2001
Posts: 8903
    
    8

Greg Charles wrote: I wonder if that's typical for software developers?


I've had similar experiences, though the furniture is usually something industrial strength (got to love the herman miller aeron chair). I had a window when I had a cubicle. Now I have an office with no window
Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma
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Joined: Jan 10, 2002
Posts: 61202
    
  66

In my past 3 jobs I had a nice office, sometimes with a window, sometimes not. My current position has me in a cubicle (or cubby-coffin, as we affectionately call them). Depends upon the company.


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Gregg Bolinger
GenRocket Founder
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Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 15299
    
    6

For the last 4 years my office has been of descent size with a window and the desk and chair of my choosing. I can play my music as loud as I want. I can even work in my PJ's! Of course, I work from home so...

Office jobs I've had are pretty much on par. I never had an office when I was an employee. Just cubicles. Sometimes just a shared table but I actually preferred that.

I've worked in some neat buildings before though. At this one gig the office building was an airport terminal that wasn't used anymore. The small airport was still used by private aircraft so at my desk I could turn around and look out the huge windowed wall and watch planes take off and land. Sometimes some cool military aircraft would show up. And I always knew when some breaking news occurred because all the news helicopters would take off at the same time.


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Jesper de Jong
Java Cowboy
Saloon Keeper

Joined: Aug 16, 2005
Posts: 14146
    
  18

As far as I know cubicles are a typical American thing. Here in the Netherlands I've never seen cubicles.

In most companies that I've worked, I've worked in rooms together with approximately 2 to 6 other people. I'm currently also in a room with 3 other people, in a modern building. I've also worked in an old building from before WWII, with high ceilings etc., but bad climate control. I've also worked on a large office floor, with many people. I didn't like that, for me as a developer it's very annoying if people are constantly talking (on the phone or person to person) around me while I need to concentrate on my work.

I can't imagine working in a room without any windows at all. It's probably not even allowed by Dutch law to put office workers in a room without windows.


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Paul Clapham
Bartender

Joined: Oct 14, 2005
Posts: 18570
    
    8

Greg Charles wrote:I have a small office now, but no windows. My desk is typical wood-grained plastic veneer over particle board and my chair seems to be one of the nicer models available from WalMart.


Likewise, although my office has a window, so I can look out... into the hallway. And I have a shelf unit from Ikea to hold various detritus like 14.4 kbps modems which might come back into fashion some day.
vijay jamadade
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 12, 2008
Posts: 241
its like jail to me. My team lead seats right and delivery manager to left. both keep on staring my activities whole day. timer starts once i go away from my desk. status update after every hour. frustrating..........


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( Nothing is Impossible.)
Anayonkar Shivalkar
Bartender

Joined: Dec 08, 2010
Posts: 1506
    
    5

Well, I'm quite lucky (so far) in my work environment so far.

I'm not very much fond of windows (either in building or on computer ) and I'm lucky enough not to have windows near my cubicle to disturb me. Only once I had a window near my chair -luckily there was a curtain to it

My dream place? Cubicle nearest to fire exit


Regards,
Anayonkar Shivalkar (SCJP, SCWCD, OCMJD, OCEEJBD)
Greg Charles
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 01, 2001
Posts: 2851
    
  11

That's an interesting perspective. Why don't you like windows? I need some natural light to keep my mood up. Spending eight hours under fluorescents makes me all stabby.
Amandeep Singh
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Joined: Jul 17, 2008
Posts: 844
it would be nice to see pictures....


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Bear Bibeault
Author and ninkuma
Marshal

Joined: Jan 10, 2002
Posts: 61202
    
  66

Amandeep Singh
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Joined: Jul 17, 2008
Posts: 844
holy crap!!! congress supreme court office
Anayonkar Shivalkar
Bartender

Joined: Dec 08, 2010
Posts: 1506
    
    5

Greg Charles wrote:That's an interesting perspective. Why don't you like windows? I need some natural light to keep my mood up. Spending eight hours under fluorescents makes me all stabby.

Well, I just don't like them(windows) Maybe I feel more safe when I know that I'm totally detached from outer world (i.e. world outside my office). But then, this apathy of windows carries on at home also - if temperature is not more than 38-40 degree Celsius, I'm not opening any windows(and I cove them with curtains if those have transparent glass)

For light, it really doesn't matter what is the source, I mean, in the days of lcd monitors and backlit keyboards, who needs external light? I'm fine with any light as long as it is white (its quite difficult to debug in dark red or blue light ), and it does not hurt my eyes.
Jan de Boer
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Joined: Dec 10, 2010
Posts: 374
    
    1
Jesper de Jong wrote:I can't imagine working in a room without any windows at all. It's probably not even allowed by Dutch law to put office workers in a room without windows.


It is not. I know, they told me. I used to work in a room with no window. But I did it voluntary. I had 3 colleagues that put the air-co on the high, I left that room, and went into a room without any view. It might surprise you but I love it there. No air-co, no let us say 'talk about non work related stuff I am not that much interested in'. Bad old desk, bad chair. Loos carpet. Mice and rats and cockroaches. But no pain in my neck from the air-co draft.
Jan de Boer
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 10, 2010
Posts: 374
    
    1
Greg Charles wrote:I need some natural light to keep my mood up.


There are a lot of things that have a greater influence on my mood than natural light. The same goes for the weather for example. So I rather be in a room with no view, and going home in the rain, while my program is working and my daughter graduated from high school, then in a pretty environment on a sunny day, but a bug I cannot find, and my baby having some trouble at school. My mood is not influenced by those external environment things.
Kaustubh G Sharma
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Joined: May 13, 2010
Posts: 1270

vijay jamadade wrote:its like jail to me. My team lead seats right and delivery manager to left. both keep on staring my activities whole day. timer starts once i go away from my desk. status update after every hour. frustrating..........


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