April 28, 2014
The Mind Does Not Belong in a Cubicle

A group of 16 people sits in front of large Mac desktops in clusters of three and four at a start-up in Brooklyn. Aside from the steady tapping away at keyboards, there is little noise. It’s six o’clock, and people just want to go home. With its open floor plan, casual dress code, and creative staff, this is considered a great place to work—but still there is something vaguely dissatisfying about the space, and it is not the only office like this.
In Cubed: A Secret History of the Workplace, released this week, Nikil Saval tries to put his finger on just where the office went wrong. Certainly an improvement on factory work and types of manual labor, the office remains “at once harmless and ominous.” Saval’s story centers on the question: “Why have the best intentions of planners and architects, designers and executives, fallen short of producing a happy environment for the American worker?”
Near the end of Cubed, Saval takes a tour with a Google representative who shows him Google’s juice bar and tells him that it is the Googlers’ favorite hangout spot. The rep asks Saval why he thinks this is so. “The juices?” Saval ventures. The rep points “to the floor-to-ceiling windows, letting in a glimpse of green and late afternoon California springtime sun. ‘It’s the proximity to nature,’ he said.”
Read more. [Image: Joerg Sarbach/AP]

The Mind Does Not Belong in a Cubicle

A group of 16 people sits in front of large Mac desktops in clusters of three and four at a start-up in Brooklyn. Aside from the steady tapping away at keyboards, there is little noise. It’s six o’clock, and people just want to go home. With its open floor plan, casual dress code, and creative staff, this is considered a great place to work—but still there is something vaguely dissatisfying about the space, and it is not the only office like this.

In Cubed: A Secret History of the Workplace, released this week, Nikil Saval tries to put his finger on just where the office went wrong. Certainly an improvement on factory work and types of manual labor, the office remains “at once harmless and ominous.” Saval’s story centers on the question: “Why have the best intentions of planners and architects, designers and executives, fallen short of producing a happy environment for the American worker?”

Near the end of Cubed, Saval takes a tour with a Google representative who shows him Google’s juice bar and tells him that it is the Googlers’ favorite hangout spot. The rep asks Saval why he thinks this is so. “The juices?” Saval ventures. The rep points “to the floor-to-ceiling windows, letting in a glimpse of green and late afternoon California springtime sun. ‘It’s the proximity to nature,’ he said.”

Read more. [Image: Joerg Sarbach/AP]

  1. punkedora reblogged this from theatlantic
  2. wicked-lemons reblogged this from aleskot
  3. maneatingbadger reblogged this from theatlantic
  4. fuckyeahdarkextropian reblogged this from aleskot
  5. missmireille reblogged this from theatlantic
  6. katievonblondie reblogged this from theatlantic
  7. mattersofmoment reblogged this from theatlantic
  8. digital-femme reblogged this from theatlantic
  9. em946 reblogged this from techstuffhsw
  10. pastorbait reblogged this from techstuffhsw
  11. coffeespoon-measuredlife reblogged this from techstuffhsw and added:
    I work so much better at home, where I can listen to Pandora and wander around my apartment and dance and work at my...
  12. techstuffhsw reblogged this from theatlantic and added:
    Reminds me of the research stufftoblowyourmind did last year when our company was about to move us into an open-office...
  13. capellasad reblogged this from theatlantic
  14. meldachevelure reblogged this from theatlantic
  15. dominadonut reblogged this from nun-porn
  16. nun-porn reblogged this from theatlantic
  17. chimeralabdesign reblogged this from theatlantic
  18. jodylynn44 reblogged this from theatlantic
  19. kjaned reblogged this from theatlantic
  20. ermahgwerd reblogged this from theatlantic
  21. xeroxink reblogged this from theatlantic