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What does your home office look like?



1:27 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

One of the funny things about the internet that a site grossing $100,000 a month in revenue can be build and maintained on a 5 year old off the shelf Dell costing $600.

Great isn't it?

So today I pose the question, what does your home office look like?

Here is mine:

I have 2 Toshiba Satellite Laptops bought at Best Buy for $500 each thanksgiving day.

One is my fiances because I'm on the computer so much she had to get her own.

One is what I run my site on.

My home office is actually the dinning room of my apartment with all the furniture up against the wall and the dinning room table with all the computer stuff.

I had to buy a book shelf to hold all my computer/reserach books, thats the only piece of furniture I bought.

On one wall I have a whiteboard for brainstorming (I admit however that I commonly come up with my best ideas using the whiteboard pens while in the shower) and a tacky board for all my to do list.

All my hard copy record are kept in a $10 plastic file box.. although I never really use it.

Your turn...


1:31 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I have my sony laptop, and a dell desktop

a desk
a bed
a futon
My filing cabinet (rarely used as well.)

Mines my dorm room... though. So my accountant tells me I can't use it as a tax write off... Complete non-sense :) But then again I'm definetly not grossing $100,000 a month, just paying for college.

[edited by: Dpeper at 1:42 am (utc) on May 3, 2004]


1:31 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

One Dell notebook, a couch, a coffee table that doubles as an ottoman and two pillows for back support. High tech stuff, let me tell ya.

Gotta love it!

BTW- What are "hard copies"?


1:53 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

laptop, wireless home network and the freedom to work where I feel like.

I do have a formal office set up as well with a desktop machine, desk, etc... But for the most part, I freewheel it all over the house, wherever's comfortable at the time.


2:12 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

remember those story problems from school ... where a train leaves station A on Track 5 headed east at 30mph and another train leave station B on track 5 headed west at 40 mph. Well, if you assume there are no side tracks, my space looks like the aftermath of the inevitable collision

as to the hardware, think retro state of the art ... as I'm sure it was a decade or so back, lol.


2:14 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

My desk top is a custom built, L-shaped piece of formica with teak trim on top of three (very old and very rusty) filing cabinets which faces out and is adjacent to my patio.

My 3 year old IMac with a Brother, black & white laser printer sits beside the computer while my Brother Intellifax 2800 sits next to the printer. My Cable & Wireless standard phone is to the right of the computer.

My patio is accessed by three sliding glass doors with a spectacular view of the Caribbean Sea and all my orchids.

Orchid growing is my passion, I have about 200 of them of various species and genera. Sailing is my other passion ... and I get to be surrounded by both all day long!

My office is located in my living room/den which has a custom built sofa bed made out of solid mahogany, (I couldn't find anything I liked on the internet) matching coffee table with two chairs, two end tables and a TV stand.

The open area living room is adjacent to the open area kitchen ... so cold drinks are within 5 steps of my desk. I keep my remote on the desktop so that when a client calls I can press mute so they can't hear the TV.

My desk (complete with filing cabinets) is on rollers so that on particularly hot Caribbean days ... I can role the whole deal out onto the patio and work in the breeze of the tradewinds.

There are (at times) HUGE drawbacks to living in the Caribbean ... but the bonuses are equally large. To be surrounded by the perfume of my orchids, have a view of the sea all day long and work for myself at a job I love is something which I wouldn't trade for 10 million a year! I am more than happy to make a modest income to maintain my current lifestyle.

It will be better when I can afford to hire someone (part time) so that I can take weekends off. Working 7 days a week, 24/7 is not a high price to pay for the obvious perks ... but it would be really nice to take a little time off now and then. A holiday would be really lovely!

All in all, life is good ... but If I had to make $100,000 a month to be happy, I would be in very big trouble. ;)


3:41 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member


Liane I know you now and we met!

We did?

Aaaaanywhooo ... citrus is impossible. Too many diseases to deal with. Do yourself a favour and stick with something easy to grow ... like orchids! ;)

green tights flying

Yikes ... not even going to ask!


3:48 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Since I don't work from home, my "home office" doesn't have any computers or fancy schmancy gadgetry anymore. Now void of all technology, I've given the former high-tech room (which once sported its own T1 and an assortment of Cisco routers and switches) an early 1900's library/museum feel with antique wood flooring and furniture, wall to wall books, and Sumerian artifacts (Archaeology, specifically Sumerology, has always been my passion and was what I originally went to school for). It's still technically the "office" though because it has a desk and it's where I pay bills from. I'll bring down the laptop occasionally, which is now my only computer at home, but rarely leave it down there when I'm finished as it kinda takes away from the room. I guess I can't really describe it, it just feels out of place and I don't like having a computer down there :P

This is slightly off topic, but I'll say it anyway ... while many people dream of working from home, I have to say NOT working from home has been the best move I ever made. When I worked from home I found it difficult to separate work from the rest of life. I found myself "working" at 11:00 at night, sometimes later, and on weekends. Working from home made it HARDER to spend time with my wife and son - even though I was physically "here" I was always down stairs working. And I made a lot less money.

Getting an office and promising myself not to do ANY work from home really redefined my business. I set hours and stuck by them, and today have a much larger office, 17 employees, and so on and so on. I go into the office 4 days a week between 9 and 10, and I leave between 3 and 4, and I take a lot of vacations. None of that was possible when I worked from home.

I know many of you guys probably have a different opinion on working from home, but I just thought I would throw in my two cents because it's not for everyone and some people don't always figure that out. Having a home life and a business life that are completely separate from each other and never cross paths has worked out very well for me. My customers don't have my cell phone number, I don't have to constantly check my e-mail, etc. I leave work at the office - if someone has a problem or needs to reach me, they call my office number and leave a message and I'll get to it when I'm there.

Work is what you do so you can afford to enjoy the rest of the time. When work BECOMES "the rest of the time", you're doing something wrong. I will never do business when I'm not at the office ever again.

Maybe I'm being a bit too philosophical but what the heck, I'm bored and there aren't any South Park re-runs on tonight.


3:57 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I think 90% percent of us are trying to get to that point.

I do my site for fun (really), its just a content site... I hope it will pay for grad school in 2 years.

Since it a content site I dont have customer service... just write when I feel like it, post when I get time, and check my adsense revenue...


4:08 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member


I understand completely!

Two years ago, I decided that I couldn't take it anymore. I lived and breathed my business 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Because the office was in my living room ... I had no escape!

So I took an office in a high traffic area and I sat there for a full year ... which was the length of my lease.

I was just about ready to go stark raving mad as (during slow periods) I was sitting there twiddling my thumbs, champing at the bit , staring at the walls and wanting desperately to go home and get "stuff" done. Thankfully, the lease ran its course and I was able to move back home to the quiet serenity of my Caribbean hideaway.

Everyone has to find their own ideal working situation. For me (NOW) and only since having the "remote" office ... am I able to put things into perspective.

Although I am still very low tech, I now have an "off" switch for the phones which automatically turns off the ringer for my business phone and the fax machine. The answering machine takes over. My personal phone is the only one which rings after hours and doesn't ring during working hours.

Life is how you define it and, in the process ... how you allow it to define you. Do as little or as much as you want. Where you do it ... makes no matter as its all in how you structure your life!

I structured mine to save myself an additional $650.00/month for office rent which I didn't really need and couldn't afford. I accomplished the same goals by installing an on/off switch for the telephone and fax ringers and a strong determination to have a personal life! :)

The swithes cost me $49.00 plus instalation. I saved $7,800,00 in rent last year alone. So far, that has paid for two of my custom built, solid (7/8") mahogany pieces of furniture which will last a lifetime.

<added>So Mark ... are you speaking English? No really ... are you? Cause I have no clue what that last post was all about! I remember Pink Ffloyd and John Cleese ... but still not grasping your message!

[edited by: Liane at 4:24 am (utc) on May 3, 2004]


4:23 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

My "office" (do you have to make an amount of money before it's an office? guess not, as charities have people with offices. I'm not in a charity, but I don't make much money, either) has 2 computers in a desk that's too small for them, a large bookshelf with an estimated 300 or so books, a smaller one with about 50, and 140 magazines, a small desk with a computer screen where the chair would go, what would normally be a home entertainment center holder thing has a scanner, about 200 floppy disks, atleast 80 cds, 3 printrs, and a large cord that I've never seen before on it. I've got a closet with clothing no one I know has ever worn in it, and about 4/5 old computer towers, with holes where harddrives, cd burners, etc have been switched from them. Also, there's a 1-arm-weight thing... you know, ones that you only pick up with one hand iwth 30 pounds of weight on it.

To my left there's tons of random notes and stuff about site design from me.

This is neglecting to mention the 10 or so cups in here, and random pop cans.


4:54 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

This is neglecting to mention the 10 or so cups in here, and random pop cans.

LOL ... no question in my mind - you have to be a guy!


5:17 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member


(Just kidding)


5:53 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

My office is in the garage (it gets mighty cold in Idaho). Last weekend I finally got a desk. We hauled an old computer desk with bookshelf up from the basement. The sliding keyboard shelf was (previously) pulled off, and is now bolted to the side of the desk. The other end is bolted to a 4 drawer file, and it makes a great home for 2 printers. That stretches out to my right. To the left is a smaller 2 drawer file, mostly for CD's, manuals and registration forms that never got filled out. Now, when my HP7100 gets busy this whole setup starts shaking and quaking.

I made a small altar in a section of the bookshelf. (Got to get my serenity somewhere) Oh, and I got a new phone for the desktop... now that I have a desktop. Did I mention that I despise telephones? I should have. The best feature on that phone is the Hold button.

Until these changes last weekend, my desktop consisted of that sliding keyboard shelf that was (once upon a time) on the desk. With a monitor and keyboard in place, I was left with about 3 inches of desk space, right in front of the keyboard, and enough room for a mouse on the right and some paperwork on the left.

For all the changes, the floor is *still* my ashtray.


5:56 am on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Absolutely ... I admit it! :)

But I am right aren't I?


1:18 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

<to kram\> as if before an exam.

Liane sorry all was not clear :-)

Yes this is english for sure dear the letters are mine and all in the alphabet we both share as is 1234567890 repeat enter erase delete matter no matter time tick tock goes my clock but I lost that one!

You said * NOW * in your last message.

One of the great unanswered questions of humanity to which we all in some way attack question and probe is what is time?

Can we measure it are we repeating ourselves?
Does it have dimension is it GMT Swiss or Distention ..

Incidentally how much time have I got now, thats right just * NOW * thats all .. I have no watch now but my other tool a phone tells me it is 13:46 here "now" and I bet it is not the same where you are but that within 24 hours certainly 26 or 36 or 1,000 it will be the same as it was here now ;-/

The biggest connundrum of our lifes is this all there is? is there my dog, more room on that log, I seek answers best by question, quest, we share what we know for the same essential central reason EGO IPSO FACTO do I 1 me actually exist? ABC lanhuage is one solution I ask myself more often than I think of sex! It is true and no OT!

Dissipating for sure however :-)

Signposts repeat all the time, do not tread on that yellow line, grass neither damage cause, inhale Bill you will regret :-) me too sorry mite :-)

We have always to learn the rules of any endeavour before we can sublimely rise above the rules and break them.

There is no one posting in here or reading who has not broken something they knew as a rule or value at as an adult or child or old person or altzheimer ....

how will I know if I have it?
Internet Technology
Informational Teachings
Sum of all there is to know at least for little me before I go? :-) when where how, and why indeed!

When I eventually shuffle off, mortal coil etc

(if you want your computer to translate that for you then check your search feature whatever you use NOW for someone called shakespere who was once fascinated by language in UK before Great Britain and future I know not what perhaps EU perhaps not, as now is Google in USA also Great and British at least for a day. because a master of any subject will come to know all there is to know I think #-)is that a goal to which I POSH push should?

that exam over :-) my biro still intact a fear defeated another comes along on on what else is there?</from mark_A>


3:11 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Believe me, they are not 'home offices', they are 'office homes' ;-)

Watcher of the Skies

4:03 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Um.....can someone send a rubber truck to Mark's place please.....

Here's an English explanation for you Liane:
d lysergic diethylamide 25


4:41 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member essex_boy is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

My officelooks like a rubbish tip.

IF the HSE ever saw it they'd die laughing.


5:19 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator brett_tabke is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

Laptops: 2 hp, 1 compaq, 1 dell.
2 ipaq 5500 with verizon aircard.
2 desktop systems. with 19nec multiscans.
2 19 in sony flat panels.
cams, hp digital camera, and a minolta 5m.px digital camera.
Hp printers: 712c inkjet printer.
psc 900 all-in-one printer/scanner/fax/copier
business inkjet 1100 dtn with auto duplexer (nice!), and a 9650 wide carriage inkjet.
gbc wide carriage laminator.
2 ibico wire binders
1 phillips 200watt stereo with usb input for cranking mp3's.
Routers by netgear and linksys. Phones by GE.

It is official - I have every work toy I can use. Next stop : midlife crisis.

The only outstanding "want" I have, is a 42 inch HP wide carriage inkjet printer (signs for the conferences).


5:55 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Our office has taken over our "formal" living room. My desk is a large rectangular antique table. It holds my 21" monitor, keyboard, and files, with room to spread out.

To my right, bookcase with lots of technical books, programming references, business references, etc. A filing cabinet (with laptop on top) and wing chair are by the window. Bird bath out the window frequented by blue jays, mocking birds & doves.

On around the room: behind me, on two long tables butted together in the corner, my son's pc, a spare printer, then my husband's pc in the corner. Next to his, some cubbies with different papers, labels, things to file, fax machine, scanner, and our big printer. Our internal server, assorted routers, siemens phone and lots of cables live in the corner.

This sounds like a neat, tidy arrangement, it is not. It's liberally seeded with assorted things needing filing, miscellaneous computer parts, stuff for ebay and the occasional stray toy brought in by the kids... among other things. But you can't beat the commute, down the stairs around the corner.



6:28 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator webwork is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

Office added onto front of center hall colonial home, along with wide porch with 4 wicker chairs resting on porch - 2 facing 2, nice for chats with kids, lunches and friends. Office has skylight, entry door to porch, dual individual glass panel doors into dining and dual side windows. I like lots of air circulation and lots of light. Light pours into dining room due to design of office. Blue and gold macaw has perch just outside my office so I have someone to talk to. Comfortable carpet so our chocolate lab likes to drop down next to my chair.

Custom build desk/shelving (oak plywood/trim, facing picture window onto street. Street name? Main Street, no kidding. Historic district. Town dates to early 1700s. Lot's of flowers out front due to my digging and wife's planting.

Oak roll top desk on other wall for personal business. Oak lawyers drop front cabinet for ... law books. I love wood: Oak, walnut, etc., preferably finished with just an oil. House is natural 10" bevel cedar sided, clear stain.

2 filing cabinets for paper. Would like to live without paper, but where would I put all the kids memorabilia? Gotta give them something when they move out.

19" flat panel Envision. 2 white box PCs 2, maxed out, KVM switched, ADSL. Linksys for routing to kids PCs. HP Deskjet printer. GE phone sys. HP scanner. HP fax.

High back oak/fabric chair on wheels so I can roll from desk to desk.

Accumulated junk now being subjected to intense remove, discard, give away process. (Anyone want a couple of HP servers? Looked cheap at first, until I found out that everything - everything - is custom and costs a lot, from RAM, HDD, HDD disk drive adapters if you want to trying using someone else's HDD, rack mounting hardware, etc. Never again. Whitebox for everything.)

[edited by: Webwork at 6:33 pm (utc) on May 3, 2004]


6:29 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

My home office is a 19x20 cabin-style addition with cathedral ceilings and huge windows all around to enjoy the views of the Champlain Valley in Vermont.

My main workstation: Alienware workstation running Gentoo Linux/KDE (2gb rdram, 338gb storage) and 19" CRT.

My browser testing toy: ProStar 4774 notebook w/ 17" WXGA+ LCD running Windows XP. This 10 pound gorilla has a 60gb 7200rpm hard drive, cd/dvd burner, and all the options. A neat side feature is the ability to keep coffee hot for 12 hours merely by resting the mug on the wrist area. It may be the world's first caffeinated heat sink ;)

A third Windows PC in the office is used for business administration tasks and browser testing.

A fourth Windows PC is used as the media center and handles all the media and video editing chores.

A fifth Windows PC is located in a separate home three hundred feet away and connects to the home office network via 802.11g.

Printer is an HP k80xi which works well for our needs.

I'm just geeky enough to dream of major near-future upgrades, but mature enough at 31 to wait until there is, ahem, a business justification for those purchases. Prudence be damned! :)



8:12 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator ergophobe is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

I have an official office as part of my job. Unfortunately (actually fortunately) I live about 2000 miles from that office. I used to think that, like digitalv, I would get another office and not work out of the home. Then my wife and I decided to become vagabonds for a while and we live in a large house, but I have everything in the bedroom, so now I really don't have separation of work from the rest of life.

- desktop I built myself (AMD Thunderbird 700Mhz, though I've heard there are computers running at over 900MHz now)

- laptop (which come to think of it does run at over 900MHz, but mostly functions as CD player and radio since I live too far out anywhere to get any radio but internet radio)

- L-shaped desk with my essential books (and rock climbing, hiking and backcountry ski guides, and CDs taking up the space b/w the desktop and the laptop).

- backwall behind my desk is sliding glass doors. On a good day the neighborhood bear ambles through and tears through the downed trees.

- 1.5 mile walk to the mailbox, with views out over Yosemite National Park.

There are days I would still like to have an office separate from the house, but not at the price of living where my actual official office is!



8:26 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

My favorite office of all time was when I was a grad student. My husband and I lived in a small townhouse, and in our guest room/den was a closet that didn't get much use. It was a standard 2' deep closet, with double doors.

I bought a piece of plastic laminate countertop at Home Depot and cut it to the right length. It fit the depth of the closet perfectly. That became my desk. I added a shelf above, and one of those chairs you kneel on tucked under the desk. I hung a light from the shelf, and taped all of my notes to the back wall. My Mac tucked into one corner. It was a sweet set up, and if I got tired of looking at it or we had a guest, I just unplugged the extension cord and shut the doors.


10:50 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

"though I've heard there are computers running at over 900MHz now" Mines 2.4 GHz.

Webwork and Seanpecor, you both sound like you have enviable offices! Very nice.

Seanpecor, if you make enough money from the internet, and use the thing enough, an upgrade can be written off against your income tax. Sadly, tax season just passed though.


11:24 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I work in an 'office' with no windows, so no daylight from 10am - 6pm. The room is about 8' x 15'.

Comps & Stuff
1 iBook 500Mhz (unplug and take unfinished work home)
1 iMac 1Ghz (dunno what I use it for)
1 iPod (music and backing up sites)
1 Sony Ericsson t600
1 HP PSC 1350 (very slow at printing)

1 x Corner Desk
1 x Packing Table
Multiple shelves, all with stock

It's really interesting to read about the home office argument. I'm hoping to go it alone in the next few months, so I had though of working from home and then rent the current workspace and use it solely as for order fulfillment. Alternatively, I had considered renting the office space and doing it up a bit. Good or bad idea? Sitting in the darkness all day long sucks ...


11:53 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

"so no daylight from 10am - 6pm. The room is about 8' x 15'." "Sitting in the darkness all day long sucks ..."

I have a window, but always have it closed anyways. I'm just a little too big of a nerd.

I prefer electronic light, cause you can turn it off.

I always have a headache from the light that the white sky provides. Sunny days are nice, but only when I have sunglasses, and therefore don't get a headache. Certain lighting gives me headaches really easily, so I try to avoid that kind of lighting.


11:58 pm on May 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Llama, I'm the opposite.

Because I get zero daylight, I get really tired and my body clock ends up all over the place. I live in Northern Ireland so for much of the year I'll get only a few hours daylight, that is after work and before. And most of the year it rains so getting outside isn't much of an option.

Wish I had a Carribean retreat! :)


1:16 am on May 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator ergophobe is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

"though I've heard there are computers running at over 900MHz now" Mines 2.4 GHz.

That was meant as a joke. I don't think I'll upgrade though.

My office isn't great. I miss my old office. I put up with it though because of the backyard it has. I'm in Yosemite National Park. It's sort of the anti-office. My trade-off for being cramped for space is that I was able to work for a couple of hours the day before yesterday and then climb over 2000' up El Capitan later in the day. That's about as good as it gets for a guy like me.

Every time I get sick of telecommuting, it just takes a short climb, hike or ski to make me realize what the advantages are.


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