Poor physical coding environments
Who was the rocket scientist that decided cubicle office environments were a good idea? I agree that certain occupations might be well suited for this, but programming is not one of them.
This gig I'm on now, which I can't wait to be done with, is the typical huge open space with offices around the perimeter. It's the worst I've been in too, because it has low walls. These two guys are standing next to me as I type this discussing their Palm devices with total disregard to what I'm doing.
Some days, when you're really coding hard-core, you need a door, a lava lamp, a zen fountain and a little inspiration to make things happen.
Back in the day when I worked for Penton Media, we moved when our trade shows were pulling in the bling and ad dollars were plentiful (circa 2000). We went from 80% offices to 80% cube space. The CEO, which to this day has no business in his position, told us at a company meeting about how cool and “new economy” the new environment was. It was so cool that us Internet people got blown out and the stock was de-listed from the NYSE.