Amen. I could never work in any of these "open plan" bull
pen suggestions. What's next, uniforms and fox-holes? A few people can work well like that, but not everyone. We could easily list a large number of teams and companies (both Bazaar and Cathedral style) who are extremely effective without playpen spaces.
Being in view of someone else's screen, when I'm trying to concentrate on mine, destroys my 'groove'. And vice versa. I'll come out of my office to question, to arrange, to chit-chat, to play hacky-sack. I'll go into my office to code. I'll set the lights the way I want. I won't overhear a conversation and try to butt in, and I won't be interrupted by someone else when I'm trying to talk one-on-one. I'll sit on my papa-san couch and read when I need to, without everyone watching me "slack off."
If people are going to own their problem domain, they need to feel like they own their physical domain too.
If you mix several flavors too thoroughly, you get the bland average. If you highlight and juxtapose various flavors, you get a dynamic interaction.
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