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The Worst Workspaces In Tech 209

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the best-and-the-worst-all-at-the-same-time dept.
nicholas.m.carlson writes help you feel better about your hovel. Vallywag recently compiled a list of the top ten places to work, but the resulting submissions and exploration also provided them with an interesting look at some of the worst places to work. "What makes them so bad? Some offend with exposed fluorescent lights, gray cubicles and a dystopian corporate sheen. But others, with their pseudo-hip graffiti, kindergarten toys and plastic decorations — all in a desperate attempt to seem 'Internet-y' — come off even worse."
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The Worst Workspaces In Tech

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  • Not so bad. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by suso (153703) * on Friday May 09, 2008 @08:31PM (#23357570) Homepage Journal
    I think some of these people doing this review are a bit spoiled. They are used to their private cubicals, posh offices, etc.

    At least most of the people in these environments have new workstations, a monitor or two and some deskspace.

    The don't show the tech business running out of a cockroach infested hotel room with 10 year old computers using dial up to connect to the net.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by hansamurai (907719)
      Some of those places look pretty nice next to the cube farm I'm at (though I like working there, don't get me wrong). Low or little walls encourage collaboration, everyone has a laptop to tote around to work wherever (but what's with all the laptops at the Mozilla meeting? talk about getting nothing done), and though some of the wall "art" might get obnoxious, it can't be much worse than all the inspirational quotes that adorn my office.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by agibson57 (1229752)

        Low or little walls encourage collaboration...

        No, they don't.

        Quit reading those trendy Agile books.

        Low or little walls encourage noise and distractions, especially when you're doing complicated and intensely-focused work.

        One would think companies would be a little smarter, but then they're mostly run by dime-a-dozen recent MBA night school grads with little technical experience and who parrot that Jack Welch BS and whose only non-original idea is to outsource everything to India in order to get a bigger bonus check and then move on to another c

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by njcoder (657816)

          Walls are not that expensive to build and power outlets are not that difficult to install, unless you have a bunch of union Facilities guys at your company who work maybe 15 minutes a day and control everybody's aesthetics.

          It's not that walls are expensive to build. Have you ever priced cubicles? They're not cheap. What they give you is flexibility in redesigning the space at a later date.

          If you're leasing the space you may not be able to build it out. If you're the one leasing the space you may not want to have it built out in a way that makes it difficult for you to rent if the current tennant leaves.

    • Re:Not so bad. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Thyamine (531612) <thyamine@oLISPfd ... m minus language> on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:02PM (#23357742) Homepage Journal
      I agree. I was looking at the pictures thinking, 'what? these are supposed to be bad?'. Sure cubicles aren't a nice private office, but that's just how most places are. I see a lot of attempts by employees to try and decorate them a bit to make it more friendly/fun. What's wrong with that?

      Compared to having just a desk in an open room (like in the one set of pictures), I'd much rather a cubicle to call my own and hangup/decorate as I like.
      • by gmack (197796)
        It's not about the office so much as the tasks. I had an employer come in one day and tell me he was going to start putting together Porn and Bestiality sites and have his new partner (Alan Ralsky) bulk mail advertise them.
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Let's see... at my last job, I wrote code... 9 hour day, two 15 minute breaks and an half an hour for lunch. Somewhat standard, I assume. The kicker was, you're working in a small converted warehouse. No windows. Attached to the warehouse is a garage, in which we received deliveries of live birds packed in cardboard boxes. The owner owned a hunt club elsewhere, and often had the birds delivered to his web development warehouse. Did I mention the bugs in the office, "break room" and bathroom?

        Previous t
    • Re:Not so bad. (Score:4, Interesting)

      by mrbluze (1034940) on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:08PM (#23357774) Journal

      I think some of these people doing this review are a bit spoiled. They are used to their private cubicals, posh offices, etc.
      Nothing beats home - you know you're on a winner when you sit down and say "I can't believe they are paying me money to do this!"
    • by DesScorp (410532) <DesScorp&Gmail,com> on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:37PM (#23357920) Homepage Journal
      Are you kidding me?

      I don't think these people have ever seen bad workspaces. Adobe is "unfriendly"? They have lots of light, lots of space, good furniture, palm trees... oh yeah, they have a fsckin' basketball court. Piss poor facilities, obviously.

      Of all of the "bad" choices, only facebook's could possibly deserve to be on that list, as it looks like a high school cafeteria with monitors. Otherwise... I'd say the problem is that the tastes of the Valleywag people are ridiculous.
    • yeah, you're kinda right. I hate this one though http://valleywag.com/photogallery/Microsoftheadquarters/1001409837 [valleywag.com] I could get nothing done here, too much ability to see and talk, plus I'd never get to browse slashdot - I'd always feel like big brother was there. this one caught my eye too, diggin' the book layout below the monitor http://valleywag.com/photogallery/GoogleplexWorst/1001410045 [valleywag.com] of course that might just be a laptop with papers over the keyboard.
  • by VGPowerlord (621254) on Friday May 09, 2008 @08:33PM (#23357580)
    Aperture Science. Despite the nice, clean looking test chambers, the rest of the facility is quite a dump.

    There's also an AI who flooded the place with a deadly neurotoxin...
  • Interesting. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Slashdot Suxxors (1207082) on Friday May 09, 2008 @08:34PM (#23357592)
    The List: -Yahoo
    -Mozilla
    -Mahalo
    -Google
    -Microsoft
    -LinkedIn
    -Jajah
    -Facebook
    -DoubleClick
    -Adobe

    I find it funny how they say Google is one of the worst places to work, yet everyone seems to want to work there.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by amccaf1 (813772)

      -LinkedIn
      I find their criticism of linkedin to be rather odd. Their description, in full: "LinkedIn's offices are just like LinkedIn.com: utilitarian and utterly boring."

      Okay, I'll give a pass to the second half: "utterly boring" is an opinion... but how is utilitarian a valid criticism of a work area? Do they know what the word actually means? Would anyone really be happy working somewhere that wasn't utilitarian? How would you get any work done?

  • Where is the TPS report driven office with a lot bosses?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday May 09, 2008 @08:37PM (#23357608)
    We're number one! We're number one!

    Oh wait, wrong list.
  • by antdude (79039) on Friday May 09, 2008 @08:42PM (#23357626) Homepage Journal
    Neatorama [neatorama.com] shares Office Snapshots [officesnapshots.com] Web site that has a collection of interior office photographs of various popular/well known companies. It is generally from Web/Tech companies.
  • by Alien Being (18488) on Friday May 09, 2008 @08:42PM (#23357630)
    As a college dropout (A's in CS, fsck philosophy), it was tough getting my foot in the door. One mistake I made along the way was letting a risk-taker scare me off with stories of sometimes having to work in boiler room type surroundings.

    If it's good work, the atmosphere becomes almost invisible. Some of the best companies in history started in a garage and some of the worst started atop skyscrapers.
  • by linumax (910946) on Friday May 09, 2008 @08:48PM (#23357666)
    I noticed some of the pictures seem very very random.

    From the comments:

    I have worked at Microsoft in Redmond for the last 7 years. Of the Microsoft photos, only one of them looks like an actual Microsoft workspace in Redmond; the one in which there are several people crowded around what looks like a coffee table. And even that one is not a typical office or conference room. It looks like a makeshift conference room. At least two of the photos are of the Orlando, FL convention center where Microsoft has an annual event. In reality none of the photos are typical of Redmond, where most employees have single-occupancy private offices.
    • I was an intern at Microsoft back in the last millenia and had my own private office half the summer, with a door and a 24" monitor. The other half of the summer I shared that office with another employee.

      I've been to the Redmond campus a half dozen times since then, and the place is still one of the most appealing work environments I've ever seen.
      • by Dutch Gun (899105) on Friday May 09, 2008 @10:47PM (#23358246)
        I have to agree, I've worked at Microsoft twice as a temp programmer. The first time I had a private office, the next I shared an office. Bad place to work? Hardly. And what's really hilarious is those photos are of the Washington State Convention Center, not of the Microsoft campus. BTW, the convention center is really nice too. To hold *conventions* in, that is.

        And I can't believe Google was listed because of a "kindergarden" design motif. Holy crap, who gives a flying f***? Smells like a quick throw-together article, with listings designed to draw ire (and thus page hits).

        Sorry, when you can't even get basic facts correct, I can't believe much else you say or show either.
    • by sheldon (2322) on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:54PM (#23357990)
      Agreed. The one picture with the rows and rows of computers appears to be the Hands-on lab at TechEd.

      I'm not impressed with either of these articles. My preferred environment is someplace clean and uncluttered. Yet valleywag called the offices with gimmicks the best, and the nice clean offices the worst?

      I wish I had a picture of the "office" I and six other consultants were put in years ago. It was the former mainframe tape storage closet. No windows. Six feet wide, with a table along the wall. When the guy at the end wanted to go to the bathroom, everybody had to get up and let him through.
  • I hope all of those Mozilla developers shower.
  • by Llywelyn (531070) on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:11PM (#23357786) Homepage
    Grey cubicles at Google, seriously?

    I had a boss who worked for a company that referred to the owner of the company as "Lord Vader" because she was utterly insane. It had a turnover rate that was prettymuch total on a yearly basis.

    I had to work once a week for a while in a warehouse in a metal chair with no one else around and an ancient piece of computer technology.

    There is at least one game company that seems to have a vested interest in driving its employees into the ground and treating them like children.

    I know another place that had computer technology that was so out of date it could barely run the software we were developing.

    I am not sure if any of these constitute the "worst" places to work, or even how they rate to the companies listed in the article, but surely there are worse things out there than the horror of grey cubicles.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by calebt3 (1098475)

      I know another place that had computer technology that was so out of date it could barely run the software we were developing.
      I bet that really cut down on bloat, though.
    • by rrohbeck (944847)
      Mmm, warehouses... I worked in one in Memphis for a couple of days. In August. No AC.
      At least they had free water. Coffee was 50c and a 5 minute walk though.
  • When do we get to see "10 Worst Slideshows on the Internet?" Those Flash TiVo ads made me dizzy.
    • Flash ads? You're kidding aren't you? Who sees Flash ads any more?!
      • by OakDragon (885217)

        Flash ads? You're kidding aren't you? Who sees Flash ads any more?!

        Sorry, er, um, I'm new here, and forgot where I was posting!

  • Best = Worst (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Colonel Korn (1258968) on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:19PM (#23357828)
    I think the ten best story posted a couple days ago shows work spaces that are pretty much interchangeable with those shown in this one. I'll repeat what I said then: a private office is better than any workspace listed, now in either list.
  • What no Amazon? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Tomy (34647) on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:27PM (#23357854)
    When I worked there they found that if they shrunk our cubes by a couple of feet they could get X more programmers in the building.

    Nothing like having your restricted little world reduced by two feet. I even had to give up my red stapler.

    • Re:What no Amazon? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Sanat (702) on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:59PM (#23358018)
      While an engineer at McDonnell Douglas each pay grade had a certain size office. If you get promoted then you might get the bigger credenza, a thicker rug, the walls might be moved out two feet, a bigger desk... that was to keep harmony with the jealous types of somebody's office being bigger/better than another person's. All based on pay grade.

      Several maintenance men were paid full time to keep this stupidity going.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Tomy (34647)
        Somehow that reminds me of the scene from Brazil where they are pulling on the shared desk through the wall.

        Ultimately, corporations reduce us all to idiots.

      • by hackstraw (262471)
        Several maintenance men were paid full time to keep this stupidity going.

        How big was their office?

    • When I worked there they found that if they shrunk our cubes by a couple of feet they could get X more programmers in the building.

      I had a client that did that.

      They got in trouble with the local building codes because they could not do the same to the parking spaces and the local codes required them to maintain a certain proportion between desks (actually regular employees) in the building and parking spaces adjacent to the building.

      I think they finally bribed the right people and got a waiver.

      • by tompaulco (629533)
        Two jobs ago I worked at a company which had inadequate employee parking. It didn't start out that bad because people parked in the neighboring lot which was never particularly full. One day we got a notice that we were not to park there as it was not out parking lot. Still it wasn't awful because there were still enough spots, but then we got a notice that we weren't supposed to be parking in a certain section of spaces, as those were reserved for visitors. They were not marked as such, so the visitors we
  • None of those places are that bad. I've worked in plenty of worse/less conducive to getting shit done places than any of those. Hell, even the Mozilla folks look like they've got actual desks as opposed to, say, folding tables and chairs. And I've seen way dingier, more depressing cube farms than anything in that list.
  • by DrVomact (726065) on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:43PM (#23357936) Journal

    These are the worst workplaces? Maybe in California. I've worked in much worse. My current employer (whose CEO is among the top ten best-compensated in the US) has me working in a building in which every time it rains, the roof runs. (Not leaks, the water runs down in streams.) They keep trying to find bigger buckets.

    We do have our own cubicles--made of what appears to be moldy cardboard—and they match the carpet exactly. We have nothing like a kitchenette or breakroom. If you want coffee, you have to go get water in the restrooms. Of course, the sinks are always overflowing because some stupid jerk empties the remainder of his breakfast mush, ramen, smelly fish stew, or whatever into them every day.

    The lighting is typical 1950s era: harsh overhead fluorescents that would quickly blind you if you tried to work with a monitor under them. So we ask to have them turned off. They are glad to do this, because it saves on electricity bills. The drawback is that this leaves our environment utterly troglodytic ; the advantage is that we can't see our environment).

    It could be worse, of course—I could have been working in the building that sank. No, it didn't sink completely—it's just sort of The Leaning Tower of Dallas. (Actually, it's in Irving, but who's heard of Irving?) The good thing is that they managed to get most of the people out (a triumph of organizational genius, considering that the sinking occurred in a mere decade), the bad news is they moved them in with us. Our warren of cubical cells is now so overcrowded that collision is a serious factor in deciding whether or not to go to the bathroom to make coffee.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mgblst (80109)
      One wonders why you would still work in a place like that?
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by DrVomact (726065)

        One wonders why you would still work in a place like that?

        Because there are factors to consider other than my physical environment—such as the need to keep a paycheck coming in, and the difficulty of getting any other job at age 60. My immediate goal is to make it through July, which will be my 5 year anniversary, thus making me vested in their retirement fund. That means I get to take the accumulated pittance with me when they lay me off (I'm sure I'm marked for execution at the next possible oppor

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by stupkid (16083)
      Sadly, I think that this guy works for Citigroup. I have been to the offices that you are talking about. While my office is not like he describes I can second his account. It is a little dramatic, but they certainly have offices like this. That building in Irving was condemned too, so Citi got a smoking deal on it. Citi worked out a deal with the city that they would X-ray the walls annually to look for cracks. It's apparently cheaper than rebuilding the tower.
  • by Ralph Spoilsport (673134) * on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:43PM (#23357940) Journal
    For a summer I worked at Johns Manville in New Jersey. Yeah - the place that was sued into bankruptcy by its own workforce for being such a toxic shithole.

    I worked in building D. D for DEATH. I had to unload a van filled with paper from banks. I'd get the truck weighed at the front gate, net to the sign that said "PHOTOGRAPHY IS STRICTLY FORBIDDEN". Geee. I wonder why...

    Once it was weighed, I'd drive it to building D, and back it up the ramp into the building itself. The building consisted of several ENORMOUS rooms, each one at least 50 ft wide and 30 ft tall. In the room I ws in was an enormous machine that looked like a cross between a cauldron designed by Rube Goldberg and a funnel designed by NASA. On the side of this thing was a hopper. I would dump paper out the back of the truck into the 6 inches of standing filthy water that filled the floor of the place. Often I could see the V shaped ripples of rats swimming through the smelly brown miasmic watery goo.

    Against one wall was a stack of paper that went all the way to the roof, which had gaping holes in it. It was summer, and there was no air conditioning, and wearing a mask was very uncomfortable. But wear one I did, for as I looked down the hallway to the other end of building D, the air was thick with the blue haze of asbestos.

    I would stand on the paper bales, and toss more paper into the hopper. Once it was full I'd signal the guy who operated it, Mike, and he would press a red button, and I would press a red button, and the hopper would lurch up the side of the vat, and dump the contents into the steaming smelling chemical bath of crap.

    Out of the bottom of the vat was a pipe about 14 inches wide. A steady stream of really foul smelling waxy black ooze would slowly extrude from the pipe. Mike would hack at it with a Machete and it would plop into his wheel barrow. H would then wheel it down the hall to a drop point, where there was a 55 gal drum, and he would dump the stinking vile glop into the drum. Once the drum was full of the black gelatinous offal, he would cap it, crimp it, and seal it, where it would then be "take somewhere", likely some landfill near Newark or Edison or Sayreville.

    Some of the people who worked there were practically feral. I remember one fat black guy who drove this miniature bulldozer around at a high rate of speed, splashing the filthy stanky water all over the place. He didn't care wher eit went.

    My guess is that all those people who worked on site all day in building D are now dead. And that's industrial capitalism for ya. OF course, now we ship that kind of work to China or Indonesia, so we can't see it, so it's OK....

    That was the worst place I ever worked.

    RS

    • I'm sorry, sir, but your entry is disqualified. The heading clearly says "Worst workplaces in tech". What you describe—though it involves fearful mechanical devices, noxious chemicals, unspeakable offal, reckless driving, and odious vermin—is not "tech" according to the conventional notion applied here on SlashDot. How many computers did your "workplace" have, eh?

      Now, if I had known that non or low-tech workplaces were eligible, I might have trotted out some of my more lurid mini-careers (such

    • anyone wondering where on earth these horrible conditions came from, consult wikipedia [wikipedia.org] for the history of the company. they went bankrupt in the 80s, following the massive asbestos strike in french canada.
  • For me, the worst places are a lack of natural daylight (either an open plan office layouts where the window blinds were kept closed to stop the programmers from being distracted), or private cubicle rooms with no windows. Not having seniority to have a window meant you didn't have seniority to see any daylight during Winter.

    Some open plan offices have sound dampening systems; loudspeakers that play white noise at a low level. You couldn't hear them, but you couldn't hear the person three desks away either.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Animats (122034)

      Some open plan offices have sound dampening systems; loudspeakers that play white noise at a low level. You couldn't hear them, but you couldn't hear the person three desks away either.

      I once stayed in a Howard Johnson's Motor Lodge in Pittsburg that had piped-in noise. At each corridor intersection or bend, there was a speaker. But it wasn't white noise. It was machinery noise - a faint background of whirr, chunka chunka, hiss, whirr, clank. At first I thought someone had just left a microphone ope

    • by Secrity (742221)
      Where I work now, too much light from the windows is a problem because it washes out the displays. I prefer to work in windowless buildings, although it is nice to have a break room that has windows.

      Our cubicles do a reasonable job of dampening noise.

      "Consider yourself lucky, if you have partition walls you can decorate, natural sunlight, a window you can open/close, a quiet room shared with maybe one or two other people. Having a cafeteria with a choice of ethnic meals is also a bonus."

      Yes partition walls
  • Utilitarian is bad? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by statemachine (840641) on Friday May 09, 2008 @09:59PM (#23358016)
    Since when is utilitarian a bad thing? I think the lists should be swapped. I can't work with a laptop and papers on couch in bright sun with other people sharing that same space and jabbering on and on with no barriers to sound.

    If you don't like a gray cube wall, put something on it! And why are desks and privacy walls the enemy?

    Maybe if you're in sales, you'll like the open architectures and bright colors, but all I want is to have the equipment I need to do my job properly.
    • by TempeTerra (83076)
      I agree with you, but perhaps we're looking at this the wrong way? I couldn't do productive work in that kind of space, but if the job I had happened to consist of sitting around chatting and enjoying the sun... now that would be a workspace I would like!
  • by Animats (122034) on Friday May 09, 2008 @10:06PM (#23358048) Homepage

    Intel is famous for their workspaces. They pioneered cubicles in the early 1970s. They have some of the world's biggest single-room cube farms. They actually built new buildings, from the ground up, with 1-acre rooms of tiny grey cubicles. Vast amounts of money were spent to create this Dilbertland. The cubicles are so tiny that two people cannot physically sit in one and talk; one has to sit out on the aisle and block traffic. They look like library carrels. This isn't a call center; it's where their engineers work.

    Klutz Press has a "fun workspace" - the partitions are made out of corrugated sheet metal. The building (a warehouse) is made of corrugated sheet metal. Lots of toys in the reception area.

    Softimage LA went through a period where everything, including partitions, was curved and on wheels. You could fold up the cubicle of someone who was out and push it to the side.

    Sony Pictures Imageworks, an animation shop, is a typical cube farm surrounded by offices. Except for the art department, which has a big open space with drawing boards.

    Silicon Valley law firms tend to have rocks. Big rocks. Polished stone surfaces. Rock gardens. And, for some reason, glass-enclosed conference rooms. Traditional law firms used to go in heavily for wood paneling, but the "high tech" law firms wanted a more modern look. The overall effect is upscale mall, but whatever.

  • We all knew bullpen style would become standard, but who thought it would go as unnoticed as it is? You'd think bullpen style was always standard based on the writing.

    • Of course it sounds like open office spaces and bullpens have always been normal. This is Slashdot. Most of the people commenting aren't old enough to remember anything different.
  • You could be working at a company you were moved twice in one year, had your stapler taken away, be forced by your boss to share your cube with storage that takes up almost all of your space, have your paycheck suddenly stop coming, and finally be moved to the basement with the cockroaches.
  • This has got to be the lamest article in a long time. It keeps alluding to pictures, but doesn't show them. Sometimes it doesn't even describe the pictures. The only picture the article has is of a guy laying back, possibly sleeping, in his cubicle.
  • I work support for a MAJOR cable news station. I can't really complain about my space at all. I have a corner area, about roughly the size of 4 typical cubes but completely open, and surrounded on two sides by windows. My personal area has an Apple cinema display for my Mac, with two side displays for my Ubuntu and XP boxes. I have a phone which no one except our call center can call into and complete admin rights on the network, even equal to the system admins. My security badge gets me into practical
  • Really ? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MarkKnopfler (472229) on Friday May 09, 2008 @11:16PM (#23358390)
    Really ? That is how we have decided that the mentioned work places are the worst to work in ? A few random photographs of the workplaces ? This must be one of the worst excuses for a 10 list that I have seen.
    The workplace/cube is certainly one of the ways to measure the top-ness (sic) of a workplace but just that ? Come on people, we all know that there are a lot of things which into making a great workplace. The dimensions and colour of your cubicle is probably just one of them.
  • by GodfatherofSoul (174979) on Friday May 09, 2008 @11:26PM (#23358426)
    The hot chick on the phone automatically eliminates it from the list.
  • They didn't mention any of the smaller tech operations in Pennsylvania. I mean, sweet suffering Jebus! Who wants to work in Pittsburgh or State College, Pennsylvania other than rednecks and KKK sympathizers?
  • The only one I have visted was Microsoft - and it looks nothing like that. At MS everyone I met or talked with had their own offce including lowly devs and testers. And one of those pictures was clearly from some kind of a conference. Talk about lame.

    I have no reason to believe any of the other pictures are accurate either.

    It looks like this journalist was either too lazy or underfunded to actually do real research, and too immoral to admit it.

    Looking at ValleyWag is clearly not worth the time of day.
  • someone where i work decided it would be a good idea to make hand turkeys to decorate the place for thanksgiving. fucking hand turkeys. when i pointed out that the last time i made a hand turkey was kindergarten, i was told i was a spoilsport and accused of thinking i was too good for the place. so objecting to an activity usually reserved for kids in daycare makes me an elitist snob. where's my rocket launcher...
    • You should have joined in by making hand turkeys with only a middle 'feather'.
      You are never too old for arts and crafts!

  • You can add almost any government office to that list. The ones I've worked in range from bland and sterile to hideous. The good ones are merely sterile. Endless gray cubicles and rarely anything resembling an amenity.

    Actually, the best office on a military project was when we were stuck in a warehouse while the Navy remodeled the regular cubicle (which they call 'pookas') hell. We could push our desks around and arrange them the way we wanted. There was a bbq outside the back door and we could have

    • You don't happen to be in Hawaii, do you? The reason I ask is that I seem to recall pooka meaning 'hole' in Hawaiian. Maybe completely unrelated, who knows.

      -b
  • by ayjay29 (144994) on Saturday May 10, 2008 @09:44AM (#23360832)
    I smell a rat here...

    This [valleywag.com] photo is actually the loby of the Washington State Convention & Trade Center [wsctc.com]. Most of the other "Microsoft headquaters" photos look to be taken there as well.

  • Corporate names elided....

    In the mid-nineties, I worked for a now-swallowed Baby Bell in the midwest, in what was going to be their entry in the long-distance sweepstakes. Upper management's lack of planning, and an "architecture" team that gave Promulgations to all the other teams, resulted in most of us doing regular days of 9-9.5 hours, and a heavy dose of 10, 12, and occasional 16 hour days. (One young consultant once put in, and I am neither making this up nor exaggerating), 119 hours one week. He was
  • I had read the 'Best Places' a few days ago and felt that most of them were somewhat nice but still nothing great. When I saw this today I had to compare, and I was not disappointed.

    This [valleywag.com] and this [valleywag.com] are considered 'the best'.
    This [valleywag.com] and this [valleywag.com] are considered the worst.

    There's not a whole lot different between the open table, no privacy of Mahalo/Gawker and the cubicles from Yahoo/Six Apart. Yet one set is at the bottom and one at the top. Right. And the attempt at knocking Microsoft is low, even for /. s
  • But others, with their pseudo-hip graffiti, kindergarten toys and plastic decorations -- all in a desperate attempt to seem "Internet-y" -- come off even worse."
    ...the hell?

    I mean I agree with it and all, but surely you could have said the exact same thing about half the stuff that ended up on their Top Ten Best list too...
  • Out of my office window, I can see my dock, my boats, Puget Sound and the San Juans.

    Whenever its nice out, I always come down with a case of eye trouble. I just can't see working on such a beautiful day.

"Lead us in a few words of silent prayer." -- Bill Peterson, former Houston Oiler football coach

Working...