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The Best Workspaces Of 2012

Get inspired by Lifehacker's list of the most curious and colorful desks, monitors arrays, spaces, and places where people get down to business.

  • <p>E-commerce company <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5934230/plenty-of-color-and-lots-of-personality-the-offices-of-shopify/gallery/1" target="_blank">Shopify</a> gussies up its office digs with cardboard cutouts, a stand-up desk station, and a robot. <br />
But even cooler is the fact that this robot is actually used to communicate with the other Shopify offices.</p>
  • <p>This desk, a good solution for smaller spaces, was <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5921106/the-ikea%2Bhacked-slim-storage-workspace" target="_blank">created using two Ikea tables</a> and a Rubbermaid shelf.</p>
  • <p>IBM engineer Daniel Heth Moran's workspace--which includes a two-fan system to keep things from overheating--is fit even for your <a href="http://www.theonion.com/articles/coworker-with-two-computer-screens-not-fucking-aro%2C29151/" target="_blank">coworker with two screens who isn't f*cking around</a>.</p>
  • <p>This <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5919272/the-dual%2Bos-multi%2Bmonitor-workspace" target="_blank">home office</a> fits four monitors and two keyboards into one compact space for the worker who needs both Windows and OS X.</p>
  • <p>Take a MacBook Air, add some Apple accessories and a stand that looks like the base of an iMac, and you have a <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5922762/the-macbook-air-workstation" target="_blank">streamlined workstation</a> powerful enough to take on most things a desktop can handle.</p>
  • <p>$15 of Ikea furniture will get you the goods to create your own <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5928335/a-simple-portable-inexpensive-standing-desk-solution" target="_blank">portable standing desk</a>.</p>
  • <p>All you need to complete the retro look of this <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5877152/the-classic-retro%2By-workspace" target="_blank">Ikea-hacked workstation</a> is a Rubik's cube and a rotary dial phone (that's actually been converted into a computer handset).</p>
  • <p>Working doesn't mean you have to sacrifice comfort if you have the chops to affix your computer and a hand-crafted side table to your <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5894611/a-computer-in-a-leather-recliner-a-compact-and-comfortable-workspace" target="_blank">luxe leather recliner</a>.</p>
  • <p>This <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5910105/hidden-behind-the-wall-a-secret-workspace" target="_blank">expansive workspace</a> is tucked away behind a movable wall.</p>
  • <p>This Parisian paradise is home to product designer <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5887283/the-designers-dream-workspace" target="_blank">Sebastien Schaeffer</a>, who keeps a giant sketchboard and paint markers handy for when inspiration strikes.</p>
  • <p>Sometimes all you need to do a good day's work are <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5943964/the-most-minimal-workspace" target="_blank">the basics</a>: a small table, desktop, and keyboard, and a ball you can stow under your desk when you're done.</p>
  • <p>The pipes and pipefittings that make up <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5886587/the-pipe-dream-workspace" target="_blank">this DIY desk</a> allow for panels that can swing out for when you need extra space.</p>
  • <p>The Verge's editor, Joshua Topolsky, outfits <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5903154/a-tech-editors-classic-workspace" target="_blank">his workstation</a> with a tech journalist's staple: a vertical monitor that streams updates from TweetDeck.</p>
  • <p>The wood floors, accents, panels, and furniture of this airy <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5878491/the-simple-wooden-tokyo-home-office" target="_blank">Tokyo home office</a> make the desktop almost unnoticeable.</p>
  • <p>A graphic designer couple turned one wall of <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5906339/the-gridded-home-office" target="_blank">their home office</a> into a life-size homage to the Grid System used by many designers.</p>
  • <p>The lighting in this <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5899095/well%2Blit-and-spacious-an-unusual-basement-workspace" target="_blank">basement workstation</a> creates the effect of a space that's as bright as an above-ground office.</p>
  • <p>This master bedroom has two double lives: one as a <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5961881/a-bedroom-that-doubles-as-a-home-office-for-two" target="_blank">home office for two</a>, and one as a space for guests.</p>
  • <p>This small but cozy <a href="http://lifehacker.com/5889301/the-upper-deck-workspace-a-cool-lofted-office" target="_blank">lofted office</a> floats in an upper corner of this home.</p>
  • 01 /19
    | The Best Workspaces Of 2012
  • 02 /19
    | Shopify

    E-commerce company Shopify gussies up its office digs with cardboard cutouts, a stand-up desk station, and a robot.
    But even cooler is the fact that this robot is actually used to communicate with the other Shopify offices.

  • 03 /19
    | The Ikea Hacker

    This desk, a good solution for smaller spaces, was created using two Ikea tables and a Rubbermaid shelf.

  • 04 /19
    | The Command Center

    IBM engineer Daniel Heth Moran's workspace--which includes a two-fan system to keep things from overheating--is fit even for your coworker with two screens who isn't f*cking around.

  • 05 /19
    | Windows Or Mac OS? How About Both?

    This home office fits four monitors and two keyboards into one compact space for the worker who needs both Windows and OS X.

  • 06 /19
    | The MacBook Air Desktop

    Take a MacBook Air, add some Apple accessories and a stand that looks like the base of an iMac, and you have a streamlined workstation powerful enough to take on most things a desktop can handle.

  • 07 /19
    | The DIY Standing Desk

    $15 of Ikea furniture will get you the goods to create your own portable standing desk.

  • 08 /19
    | The Retro Workspace

    All you need to complete the retro look of this Ikea-hacked workstation is a Rubik's cube and a rotary dial phone (that's actually been converted into a computer handset).

  • 09 /19
    | The Reclining Workspace

    Working doesn't mean you have to sacrifice comfort if you have the chops to affix your computer and a hand-crafted side table to your luxe leather recliner.

  • 10 /19
    | The Hideaway

    This expansive workspace is tucked away behind a movable wall.

  • 11 /19
    | The Designer's Dream

    This Parisian paradise is home to product designer Sebastien Schaeffer, who keeps a giant sketchboard and paint markers handy for when inspiration strikes.

  • 12 /19
    | The Mini Minimalist

    Sometimes all you need to do a good day's work are the basics: a small table, desktop, and keyboard, and a ball you can stow under your desk when you're done.

  • 13 /19
    | The Pipe Dream

    The pipes and pipefittings that make up this DIY desk allow for panels that can swing out for when you need extra space.

  • 14 /19
    | The Tech Editor

    The Verge's editor, Joshua Topolsky, outfits his workstation with a tech journalist's staple: a vertical monitor that streams updates from TweetDeck.

  • 15 /19
    | The Tokyo Home Office

    The wood floors, accents, panels, and furniture of this airy Tokyo home office make the desktop almost unnoticeable.

  • 16 /19
    | Living On The Grid

    A graphic designer couple turned one wall of their home office into a life-size homage to the Grid System used by many designers.

  • 17 /19
    | The Unusually Well-Lit Underground Office

    The lighting in this basement workstation creates the effect of a space that's as bright as an above-ground office.

  • 18 /19
    | Bedroom Business

    This master bedroom has two double lives: one as a home office for two, and one as a space for guests.

  • 19 /19
    | The Lofted Office

    This small but cozy lofted office floats in an upper corner of this home.

Have you got a great workspace? Upload your photos to the comments section below!

Throughout the year, the folks at Lifehacker feature the coolest workspaces from all over the world, submitted by everyone from professional designers to journalists to photographers to DIY aficionados who've discovered a new, creative home-office hack. They've rounded up 20 of the year's most popular featured workspaces, including home offices hacked together with Ikea furniture, a DIY standing desk, and an office that attaches to a leather recliner. (Seriously.) Check out 18 sumptuous spaces above.

[Main Image: Flickr user Thomas Høyrup Christensen]

Slideshow Credits: 01 / Image: Flickr user Thomas Høyrup Christensen;