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Bionic Office revisited

(1) You wrote a review of your new office a short time after it was completed.  Now that you have been there for a longer period of time, are there any features that you would have planned differently?

(2)  Do you recall what the brand name of the “Translucent Acrylic” material that was used between office walls?

Saturday, February 21, 2004

The office is working out great. It's awesome. I'm going to use the same exact design whenever we expand into new space.

The only thing I can think of to improve it would be putting european hinges on the wood panels that cover up the troughs at the back of the desks. Oh, and I think we might want to use carpet in some places instead of wood floors to absorb some of the sound.

If I had a bigger budget I would use etched glass instead of acrylic, and stainless steel instead of aluminum, just to make it look a bit better close-up.

I don't know the brand of the acrylic material -- you can ask my architect (

Joel Spolsky
Fog Creek Software
Sunday, February 22, 2004

European hinges?

I'm european. I've never heard of "european hinges", what are those?

Fredrik Persson
Sunday, February 22, 2004

By European hinges, I'm guessing J. means the "blum" type.,41241&ccurrency=1&SID=

Sunday, February 22, 2004

Concealed Hinges are hinges that are hidden from view and allow you to see only the surface of the door. They are sometimes called “European-style” hinges and offer a clean design look.

Sunday, February 22, 2004

Just to throw another point in, european hinges usually have 3+ degrees of freedom as well (using the term loosely).

When your cabinets shift (and they will) you still have the ability to adjust the doors in a variety of ways.

For those interested in a short trip to insanity, try aligning a single door with 5 of those blum hinges, where the cabinet is skewed.

Monday, February 23, 2004

Your generousity in sharing the details about your new office layout is appreciated - I plan on adding two offices to my walk-out basement and I'm incorporating a ton of details based on your article.
Your office details adds some nuts-and-bolt dimmensions to the PEOPLEWARE philosophy. The details cost you time and money, and yet you "open source" them for our benfit. It's a great example of the advantages of openness IMO.
1) I would guess your walls use metal studs and the acrylic panels on one side (vs. the typical wallboard on two sides) - or is it two acrylic panels?
2) Is the sound transmission through the walls an issue?
3) You mention you might do SS instead of aluminum for trim in your next office. You're a vagan liberal hiker! What's your thoughts on wood trim? Wood studs?
4) Do you have any links with more pictures?

Doug Hobkirk
Friday, March 12, 2004

Hardwood (or laminate) is good.  If sound is an issue, buy a few rugs or somesuch.  This is easier to replace than installed carpet.

Thursday, April 15, 2004

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