Thanks, Julie! We are pretty lucky to have some fabulous spaces for digital humanities work at the Scholars' Lab! What I most like about them is that they are so varied.
In the main lab, we've got a wide-open space that (at least once a week and often more) we reconfigure from a jumble of cushioned chairs and coffee-tables to more formal seating in circles or rows (with a wheel-in podium) for public lectures. There are fixed workstations with gigantic monitors out there some in single stations in the airy portion of the lab and some in pairs or trios in "collaboration cubicles" in the back. (Each collaboration cubby also has its own whiteboard and half-height, semi-transparent walls.) Also in the main portion of the lab are these great tables from Herman Miller's "Intersect" line, that fold down to almost nothing, so they're easy to get out the way when not needed. (They're also nice because they have a hole in the middle for power cords.)
We've got two rooms that adjoin the main lab. One is a classroom, which we've recently converted from having rows of workstations to a big conference table in the middle (actually three of the tables I mentioned above) with seven or eight workstations around the edges. This conversion was possible because we'll be able to do more and more of our instruction on students' own laptops using UVa's "Hive" software virtualization program. It makes the room much more flexible for different kinds of teaching and meetings. There are fixed whiteboards in there (but my next project is to paint the whole thing with whiteboard paint.)
Two of our full-time staff have offices in what they call "hexicles" out in the SLab public space. They claim the low rumble of student conversation is not a bother, and their area is a bit secluded behind the big semi-circular public service desk. (That's one thing I would *not* advocate including in any space plan -- the service model for libraries is changing to a degree that it no longer makes sense (economic or otherwise -- in a digital lab, anyway) to design a space to point visitors at a big, authoritative reference desk.)
Finally, we've got a little, glassed-in room called the "ThinkTank." We remodeled it ourselves on a shoestring, from a very antiseptic meeting room with a single table and a desktop computer on a massive media cart, to a very intimate (not to say funky) conversation space. We painted the two un-windowed walls a very dark grey, brought in two leather 1920s fainting sofas from the Library's surplus shed, a couple of floor-lamps with gorgeous red shades, and created a coffee table ourselves from a surplused glass Special Collections display case. (We took a hacksaw to the legs, and filled it with motion-sensitive LEDs that sparkle and ripple with light when you set your coffee-cup down. (This did involve a conversation with Procurement on why we were placing parts orders with a company called Evil Mad Science Dot Com.) There's a small whiteboard in there and an enormous, wall-mounted flatscreen TV with laptop hookups. I love having this room as part of the public spaces of the Scholars' Lab, because gives an entirely different vibe. If the rest of the SLab (with its black-and-white tiled floors and mid-century Modern Eames fabrics) is The Jetsons, the ThinkTank's a space-age Victorian opium den. People use it so much more often to have real conversations and planning meetings now.
Back in our staff office area, we have a little kitchenette (so nice to have!) with fridges, a microwave, coffeepots, and a sink -- and also a water cooler. Our Grad Fellows in Digital Humanities have free run of this, along with our staff. That's good, because right around the corner is a nice room with big windows that we've given over to our Fellows as their office and hang-out space. We put small tables along the wall with power hookups for their laptops, a big, rolling whiteboard, and another flatscreen TV in there. It also has bookshelves which they can use for their stuff and on which most of our staff store their hard-copy tech manuals. Some cushy chairs and ottomans, too.
On staff offices: I'm the only one with a private office, although three of the people who work in R&D (software developers attached to the SLab) have a shared office with a door that closes. Most of our staff -- five or six others -- share a big office in which everybody has a dedicated workspace, but which is laid out so that there's a big, open, central area for conversation and collaboration. One desk in that room is secluded in a kind of traditional cubicle, and others have some privacy because they're in corners, but the open feel, the glass door, and the big windows in that room give a sense of shared space.
We have a couple of white-boards-on-wheels that we make excellent, regular use of. Everyone has either one very big external monitor or (for designers and GIS types) two.
Everybody seems to like their chairs, which are pretty ergonomic and nicely adjustable. The brand we got come with or without pads, and everyone got to make a choice -- and everyone argues his or her choice was the right one. Anyway, if you can splurge a little on chairs for the staff who will spend a lot of time in them, you should.
Cut a hole in a wall to make a window if you have to -- people need natural light.
That's it! I'm tapped out. I should take some good pictures of our spaces to share, but there are some small and ill-staged ones attached to my last two "Day of Digital Humanities" posts (1 and 2).
I know the Emory crowd saw our space -- it was great fun to host you guys! -- but thought I'd share this quick overview for others who may be thinking along similar lines.