Discussion in 'Community' started by mcadam, Nov 1, 2004.

  1. mcadam macrumors 6502a


    Apr 3, 2004
    Hey there...

    I'm studying architecture and my project this year is gonna be an attempt to create an architecture that supports getting annoyed with each other... not because I want people to, but because it's a fact that when you live and/or work closely together over a period of time, you will at some point get very annoyed with someone and even start hating that person...

    The first step I have to take (according to my professor) is to create a "measure" of this ... so some kind of device or unit or... something... that measures this social situation...

    I have quite a few plans and ideas myself, but would like to get some more input from different people than myself...

    So, what I'm asking you guys is some views on being annoyed... when do you get really annoyed w your flat mate, your mom, your colleagues? Or they with you? And what might be the signs that this is going on?

    Also, do you have some strategies to avoid annoying (or the opposite) situations, i.e. going to the toilet for 1/2 hour or shutting up completely?

    Hope to get some good real life examples ... yes, this could be YOUR perfect chance to rant uncontrollably, so get going...

  2. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"

    Maybe its just me, but this went "whooosh" right over my head. :)

    Not sure what are you asking?

    How does architecture and being annoyed relate?
    Are you talking about building a house or office that allows people to have "space" when they get annoyed (like a time-out room or something)?

    How about some examples to let us know what you are talking about.
  3. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Nov 1, 2001
    It all depends on the individuals - but think of it as the Odd Couple. Messy vs. Clean/Organized vs. Clutter/Tastes Great vs. Less Filling.

    What you're basically trying to do is make a space for someone that they won't like. You might be better off making two spaces that contradict each other in all the aspects of design and link them together either through communal space or doorways. This way you could have an open floor plan on one and compartmentalized on the other, dark vs. light.....etc. Because with out showing more than one side you might find someone on the jury who really likes the design because it fits his/her character.

    Interesting idea, but its not a simple thing to pull of convincingly.

    I really want to see the final result, so email it to me or post it here later next year, but let me know if I don't see the thread.

    Good luck,

  4. jsw Moderator emeritus


    Mar 16, 2004
    Andover, MA
    That seems like a hard thing to measure objectively. Perhaps you could determine how much of the living area is forcibly shared in that the occupants must use it as a common space or, even more likely to cause annoyance, at the same time. So, for example, if a residence has n occupants, then, say, the likelihood of conflict would increase as the number of bedrooms/bathrooms decreased to less than n, as the 'personal' (i.e., unshared) area decreased, as sound insulation decreased, etc.

    Basically, the more often you need to see, hear, or follow in the footsteps of someone else, the more likely you are to be annoyed with them. Obviously, in many situations, you'd want some common areas (esp. for spouses, families, etc.) but in others you 'd want as much private space as possible (college roommates).
  5. mcadam thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Apr 3, 2004
    ...ahem... yes, this is possibly a special architect dialect... what I mean is that when the architecture is being created, the social tensions that inevitably will take place inside it is taken into account...

    And yes - a "time-out room" could be part of it (the bathroom)... or a strategically placed door that slams very well...

  6. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    Got you now...
    Takes me a little while to catch on sometimes!
  7. mcadam thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Apr 3, 2004
    I think you are right on this, nobody told it should be easy... but I guess it is also a point that this measure will/can not be objective! So what I'll do is my own subjective measure... yeah, that's the point i think...

    Yes, this is some of the stuff I'm thinking about. But I think it's also true that you can also be very annoyed by people who are very similar to you... me and my brother for instance. And I love him more than anything, but sometimes...

    So in that way, the project will also have to deal with love of some sort. I mean, there is most often a positive reason why people start living or working together. And in my building they'll be doing both... so potential for lots of tension, he he!

    thanks a lot for your comments, I really appreciate it.

    Hope more people will share their thoughts, would like some practical examples too...

    So one question for you could be: When did you last get really annoyed with a colleague, why did it happen and what did you do as a reaction? And a second question is: When did a colleague get annoyed with you, how did you notice and what did you do as a reaction? A couple of hundred answers would be nice to give me some proper statistical material to work with...


    if you are more curious here's a link to a thread from another forum. It's from an earlier phase of the project, so things has changed some since... and by the way, the pics can be a bit, ehrm, disgusting, so...
  8. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    The Big Brother house for the last UK series (2004) was specifically designed to raise tension and create conflict.

    This was acknowledged & used as a promotional tool by the producers.
    (Evil Big Brother...)

    It worked... 3/4 weeks in, a huge fight occured amongst all the house-mates.

    To accomplish this they:
    -- Lowered the ceiling and decreased the space from previous houses to increase the claustrophobia.
    -- Designed seating that no-one could stretch out on, the seating was fixed so people had to face each other
    -- Jarring colours, angles, & protruding wall ornaments were used as decoration.
    -- The garden walls were decorated with a concrete block pattern to enforce the prison-like atmosphere.
    -- Any diversions eg. vegetable garden & chicken coop were removed so that housemates were forced to interact with each other.

    And a lot more...

    Here are some pictures:
  9. emw macrumors G4


    Aug 2, 2004
    In terms of measuring levels of annoyance, that's a tough one. People demonstrate annoyance differently - and generally speaking, annoyances don't become demonstrable (in the form of slamming doors, yelling, whatever), until they have built up over time ("You never put the cap back on the toothpaste and I'm sick of it, you slob!"). So you almost have to survey people to find out what annoys them and how they deal with it.

    Generally speaking, the design cannot adapt to annoyances - it can only plan for them and include features that will likely prevent situations that cause annoyances. The toothpaste example is good in a roommate situation where you could plan extra bathrooms, but if you're married and your wife or husband is a slob, that's more difficult - couples tend to share personal areas and so separate ones don't necessarily fix the issue. Or they could backfire ("Whenever we start to argue, you go to your workshop, you insensitive jerk!").

    Perhaps you could plan a separate apartment in the design that could house an on-site psychologist.
  10. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    Most people get annoyed in Offices either because of differences in work ethic, personality, and amount of loud noise and chatter that happens near them. Differences. Sometimes everyone has their own office, while some offices have cubicles. Some have a large cluster of desks that a large number of people share. There are no dividers of any sort, and I guess you make your own personal space and work there by forming a boundary with your own books and papers around your area of the desk, and do paperwork/laptop stuff within the boundaries you creat.

    In a situation where the stuff in your area could mix with another person's stuff, I think you can tell how close a group of people are if their stuff mixes together or not. For example, if me and my friends are working together at a library and we have papers and pens lying about on a huge desk, stuff like pens, cookies, chips, etc could just spill over into another person's space, and it doesn't matter because our relationship is close. The little work area we formed for ourselves takes less of a....."form" (?).
    If we're not close, maybe we're more conscious about making sure that everyone gets their own space, and so my stuff is laid out in a square around me, and everyone else does the same thing, making sure that we don't take up too much of other people's space....our stuff is clearly separate due to a 15 cm gap or something. Basically, the boundaries people form are more clear. That's a measure of like or dislike, I guess. :eek:

    I'm actually not sure what you're talking about. :p Did you mean, "How would you design an office that would incorporate ways to make sure people don't get annoyed with each other," because what I described was very different, as are lots of the suggestions/questions here.

    If you could make cubicles and lay them out in a way that ensures nobody can see what another co-worker is doing, that would be cool as well. Think about it: Even with cubicles, you can usually see what someone else is doing. If you organise it so that from the seat of each cubicle, no person can watch what another employee is doing, that would be neat. Also, you could organise the cubicles so that even neighbouring employees are most likely to take different paths to get to their cubicle (or office) simply because of position, where the opening/door is, etc.
  11. emw macrumors G4


    Aug 2, 2004
    Work annoyances for me are different than annoyances at home. At work, I get annoyed with:

    1. People who consistently act like they know what to do when in reality they are completely ignorant of the situation. I try to correct them without being obnoxious.

    2. People who always have the same answer to every problem. Them I just ignore and move on.

    3. People who have atrocious grammar. I cringe.

    4. People who state something completely obvious and then act like they just solved world hunger. I generally just stare in disbelief, shake my head, and then go on with the conversation.

    5. People who don't provide input to a situation and then bitch when the solution doesn't fit their needs. I call them out on their lack of participation.

    I could go on, but essentially people who are incompetent to perform their job duties and who limit my effectiveness annoy me at work. How I address it depends on the person, my relationship with them, and if they are higher up in the organization than me ;)

    I have my own office, so work space overlap isn't a big issue. But I do get annoyed when the elevators are constantly out of service or the coffee machine is out of order...
  12. rueyeet macrumors 65816


    Jun 10, 2003
    When you say you're trying to create "create an architecture that supports getting annoyed with each other," do you mean you're trying to design the space to help people NOT be annoyed, or to design to make people MORE annoyed?

    I always find that while people generally are driven to argue by the little things--toilet seat, toothpaste, neatness levels, etc--the arguments are rarely ABOUT those little details. Usually they reflect larger issues that won't be solved by any amount of thoughtful architectural design, just as the best-planned house or office is not going to be a substitute for learning to get along with others in the first place.

    Still, it's an interesting idea, so I'll throw in my seventeen cents. Conflicts that can be solved by architecture/design tend to be about the sharing of common resources, so let's consider the bathroom. There's nothing more annoying than someone taking up more than their share of time and/or storage space in the bathroom (countertop, cabinets, shelves, etc).

    So WHY is it that on every floorplan I see, the bathroom gets compartmentalized so that the fixture that is usually used for the longest time (the shower/bath) is in the outermost compartment, while the fixture that not only gets used for a comparatively short amount of time, but usually is required with the most urgency, is locked away in the inmost compartment (the toilet)? Seems to me that this contributes mightily to having someone hogging the shower while their roommate does the pee dance in the hallway and yells for them to hurry it up already.

    This peeves me every time I see a houseplan that incorporates it. It's just an argument waiting to happen. The toilet is what you're going to need to get to the fastest, and possibly in the dark; if you MUST compartmentalize the bathroom, for goodness' sake, put it in the outmost compartment!

    Yes, the nice big tub looks more impressive when the real estate agent's showing off the home, but do you really want your long hot stress-reducing soak with aromatherapy candles interrupted because your mate needs to get past you to the toilet's inner sanctum? Sure, bathrooms are supposed to be designed so that the toilet's not the first thing you see when opening the door, but do you really want to be stumbling around the bathroom in the dark trying to find it when you're half-asleep or ill (or worse, drunk and in dire need of supplication to the Porcelain Goddess)?

    Start the revolution! Access for the humble toilets of the world!! :D
  13. macfreek57 macrumors 6502

    Jan 1, 2002
    Baton Rouge, Louisiana
    while this is not very productive, it would be cool...

    maybe you could design the house so that it was so distractingly annoying that the inhabitants would be caught up with hating the house and they would have no energy to be annoyed with each other
    -place the only shower/tub in the middle of the living room
    -doors that spring slightly open when you try to close them
    -tiny mirrors
    -no windows
    -couches that are slightly too small
    -water beds
    -no hot water
    -astro turf on cement foundation instead of carpeting and padding
    -very loud and useless wind turbines placed throughout the house
    -refridgerators that decide randomly when to cool things and when to warm them
    -pictures of smiling, scary-looking clowns with fangs and blood running from their mouths
    -combined bathroom sink/toilet
    -koo-koo clocks that chime every 1/4 hour
    -pentium 1 PC's running win95 with only a 850 Mb hard drive, a 5 1/2" floppy and a 14 kbps phone modem
    -tons of cabinets that don't open; one small one that does
    -huge TV's with no volume control or remote

    good enough
    sorry to be so unhelpful, but it was fun :D
  14. ejb190 macrumors 65816


    A simple survey of workplace/home satisfaction could work for you.
    "Do you like your work area?"

    Want to add stress to an office? Put everyone in low cubicals (or better yet, no walls at all) and place the boss in the middle of the room on a raised platform so he/she can watch over everyone... Try taking away all personal space or access to any equipment that they might use on a regular basis. (Need to make a copy? You have to send the origional to Bob the copy guy with a written request and two week notice.)

    Funny how I frequently find myself cleaning up the common areas in our office, but have the most cluttered desk in the office!

  15. mcadam thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Apr 3, 2004
    Wow - I got more response from you in 24 hours than an average student gets from his professor in a week... And most of it has even been very useful and given me quite something to think about.

    The fact that the UK big brother house was made to raise tensions between the people within is amazing and the details of it likewise... especially I like the fact that all seating is fixed so that people will sit and look at each other.
    Also referring to the posts that have mentioned office cubicles - the question of being able to get out of sight seem very important.

    Some people have also mentioned that while annoyances can be triggered by the architectural design, the real reason will be something else that lies beyond the influence of the architect. So true.

    Obviously personal differences between people can be the cause of much tension. But I suspect that so can similarities... so I would like to ask you: Why and when do your flatmate/girlfriend/husband piss you off?


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