I recently ran across Office Snapshots – an entire blog devoted to pictures taken inside of (mostly) Web 2.0 companies and their ilk. A recent posting at UADDit brings some more pictures to the table. If you want to get some sense of what the physical surroundings are like at Twitter, or Facebook, or LinkedIn, or Mahalo, or Ning, or dozens of other Web 2.0 garden spots, click on through.
It’s dangerous, but tempting, to generalize on the basis of these samples. Clicking around, I see lots of tables (rather than desks with drawers), open bullpens (rather than private offices), high-end chairs, and goofy decor that probably didn’t cost a whole lot. The overall vibe of most of the companies you’ll find on these sites is “fun to work for” rather than “deeply professional” – which, some would say, matches what Web 2.0 is all about.
As a software developer myself, though, I’ve got to say that I’m profoundly unattracted by most of what I’m seeing here. Have these people never seen the evidence that private offices and quiet help programmer productivity, or do they just not care? It’s good to have meeting space, but personally, I don’t want my entire career to be one continuous meeting. Give me something like Fog Creek’s offices any day.
What about you? Are you working in a Web 2.0 bullpen and loving it? Looking forward to making your money and cashing out so you can have a private office? Or just jealous of those who get the nifty decor instead of a boring cubicle?