Study dens: a case for cyberspace


Husna Rahaman’s article in Bangalore Times.

LET'S accept some home truths. The crashing of the hard disc of your computer is more painful than a slip disc. A mother board is as essential as Mrs Mom herself, and Pentium is the name of the newest member of the family- bacteria, virus and all. Really, the workplace of today is wherever the computer is office, home or anywhere in between. Technology has created an ever shrinking planet. With the world accessible at your desk, the border between continents is a blurred one. As for the demarcation between home and office, in a great many cases it has ceased to exist. More people run successful enterprises out of their home than ever before. The internet and real estate prices combined have created the home into a viable work- space, think space, often fun space.
To dedicate a room or a segment of a room to this king of technology, the PC is not only mandatory, but quite rudimentary. This space should be a retreat into your special world. A comfort zone that pampers and soothes.
Whatever your budget or space constraints, make a list of things you love and surround yourself with them - favourite photographs, fragrant flowers, a memory of a favourite vacation or even that sinfully good chocolate in your bot- tom drawer!
If you are building a home, plan a study in a place that inspires you, preferably a room with a view. Often the study is planned as a unique feature within a bedroom. However, should any one of you be prone to ingenious night activities, this room can be planned as a separate wing of a bedroom suite to avoid the "come to bed honey" pleas of your tormented spouse.
It is important for you to assess the extent to which you are a techno tiger. Plan for the gizmos you need, and when in doubt, wire the place anyway. To have garlands of wire streaming over and under walls is an absolute dis- grace to this sanctum,
Make provision for a television, music sys- tem, printer, scanners and whatever else gets your juices going. Your desk is a reflection of the concept for the space. Light, fresh and crisp scores over the recreation of a ghost era. Veneer in walnut or bleached wood is a safe choice, although nothing dazzles better than a large expanse of glass on sculptural legs. You can place your monitor and CPU under the desk on an angled stand with a glass top. Make provision for adequate storage which is not modelled after your favourite wardrobe. A composition of partially open and closed shelving is based on proportion - much like your favourite car or Baywatch lifeguard.
Try innovative materials for storage shutters like coloured acrylic lit from within or two colored veneer and glass to create an interesting play of materials. Should you be unable to allocate a separate room for this purpose, you can scoop a special alcove of the home for this purpose and despite the odds make it into a space which is meaningful to you - a dash of your favourite colour on a wall and a thoughtfully detailed and personalised desk and overhead storage will make the difference.
An oversized couch which has taken the pro- file of your shapely self is an indispensable friend. A large centre table and beanbag complete the picture. Today's work culture is that of casual precision. Even heads of state meet over power breakfasts and working lunches at exotic locales. Some of us, however may never find ourselves so far north and may just have to content ourselves with a view of the rugged rain tree, a steaming cup of cocoa in hand and a favourite CD playing in the background- rather nice, really.