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Office Space

So I have an L-shaped desk in office, where the corner of the L has the
maximum surface area. This is because the outer surface of the desk makes an
L-shape, while the inner one is more like \_/
This was perfect for the time when desktops had big CRT screens which needed
a lot of space, and depth, while the thin strips on the sides were enough
for keeping the paperworl.
Today, with slim LCD screens, the depth of the L is unused. Hidden from
sight by the erect screen, this is a space that lies unutilised for anything
except the soft board for pinning up useless things that a person probably
wont want to look at unless they stand up.
This leaves me with a sense of space wastage. With all my paperwork bundled
up on two thin strips of desk, including such necessary nicknacks as a card
holder, a notepad for scribbles, a desk calendar (yes, I need a physical
calendar - a virtual one is not as helpful when I want to circle holidays
and count number of days or look at the next few months while talking on the
phone. Not to mention need for speed in aforementioned activities), a bottle
of water, desk-phone, a pen holder, mobile, purse, coffee cup, and
unavoidably, some other object - all needed within an armspan!

Some of you, I am sure will joyfully point out the many items in the list
above which do not need a physical presence, especially with a computer
right in front of me. But to those hallowed souls, I will point out that
technology may be what it is, its still easier to flip a few pages to read
what i jotted down during a meeting than going to a folder, finding a file
and reading a part-transcript of my take-away from a conversation. Hmmm.
Microdoft, take note. Perhaps its time something like the "Notes" feature
from Windows Mobile made its way to PCs. Though still, handwriting feature
entering regular use Windows PCs is going to take some time. And the same
reasoning goes to calenders.

As for those poor friends of mine who have no fixed desks - I pity you. I
wonder how you live such paperless existence and how you manage your day to
day operational inanities. Where you scribble your 'take this down' phone
numbers, the helplessness you must be feeling when you have the
irrepressible urge to mark the holidays on your calendar with a RED pen -
and circle it so that no one can mistake it for what it is. How you can not
have important phone numbers of colleagues pinned up before your eyes
instead of sifting through your computer files. And of course, the small
things like the menu card of the nearest restaurant which can provide you a
working lunch in 10 mins, the pens and pencils and staplers which can save
your life and work in a pinch, the drawer where you can keep your odds and
ends, your personal papers. I pity you poor workers who dont have anything
to call your own in your office, except your backpacks, and your laptops.

And so it is, that no matter how big my desk is, no matter which office I am
in, I always find a pile of paperwork crowding the already small area
available to me, and everytime there is a need to keep something new, or
find something I have, I have to hunt through a mess and come up triumphant
at the end of a relentless search.

Space, anywhere, is a premium!

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( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
25th Feb, 2010 17:30 (UTC)
Clean desk, clean mind :D
We have half height cubicles, that are about 5' high, so affording a modicum of privacy. Each seat has a whiteboard and the top of the cubicle is about 2' from the desk surface. The walls are also thumbtack friendly- so people pin up phone numbers, hanging calendars etc. 'Clean desk' policy combined with laptops for all ensures that there's no clutter left anywhere.
Of course, my cubicle is festooned with xkcd ^^
26th Feb, 2010 10:10 (UTC)
Re: Clean desk, clean mind :D
Ha! "Clean Desk" me all you want! All my offices had a Clean Desk Policy. I can never adhere. All my WIP is on my desk in some form or other. White board and soft boards for stuff is all OK, but i need stuff I can scribble on horizontally.
My desk is not small. I have seen yours courtesy photos and I can safely say mine would have the same area. Its just that my work demands papers. And that occupies desk space. And of course, the other small things I mentioned (pen, phone, calendar, water bottle, etc etc)
Tabula Rasa for me is limited to a new sheet on my notepad or a new document in MS Office!
U has xkcd? I has Terry Pratchett!
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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