His latest toy is to have had speakers installed on a wireless sound system in the ceiling. This allows various zones and a wireless controller, the kind of thing that's very cool for the home, but not really appropriate in an office environment. A few weeks ago, we moved into an open plan office for the whole company. My concentration has been significantly affected by the number of people who think it's still acceptable to have speakerphone conversations in this situation, and yes, I use headphones, and yes, I can still hear them over the quiet bits in my music.
Today's fun, however, was to have what would have been Radio 2-style easy listening spewing from the speakers at a significant enough volume that it started to be an interesting mashup with the Bach B-minor Mass. In the end, I was having to put on the Dies Irae from the Verdi Requiem mass which was about the loudest thing that I wanted to listen to that I had available to me at work in order not to hear this junk over the top.
Not content with this, we are getting 9 plasma screens installed over tonight (or so I've heard) in a 3x3 video wall right by my desk. This means that anything that gets played on them will be right in my peripheral vision, and for those of you reading this who aren't anatomically minded, the bit where the brain mostly detects motion rather than being able to focus. This means that any movement there will be incredibly distracting, and in an environment where concentration is already quite hard it's going to make it almost impossible.
As I've said above, the CEO has a tendency to shout. Given that improvements in the platform are currently ongoing in the uk dev team, all of whom are affected by this ridiculous fad for pointless tech. I've now complained to my boss and the CTO, and asked them to do the part of their job which is upward management of DW. Given that this hasn't really ever happened, I'm not holding my breath.
The worst thing, though about all of this, though, is that really it's all just adding insult to injury. Just before we moved (so with 3 and 2 days notice), DW sent two emails to the whole company. The first one said that "you are required to be in at 07:30 on the Monday following the move to make sure we start business at 09:00", and the second "all staff are required to be in for 30-60 minutes on Saturday". Forgive me, but this is obviously downright illegal, and plain impolite. It's even worse if you write the second one from the airport on your way to go on holiday...