Vehicle: Elevator
Cubicle Elevator   (+13, -3)  [vote for, against]
Personal cubicle transportation

The modern office world is a soulless place with acres of cubicles, necessitating hour-long treks through meandering mazes to get to the bathrooms or to the exit.

Imagine instead, an office building where you swipe your pass at the front door. Moments later, your very own cubicle appears. You step in, and it whisks you off to an upper floor. An hour later, you want some coffee,so you press the button for the pantry, and you are whisked over. Half an hour later, you press another button, and you are whisked over to the bathrooms. And so on.

Instead of forcing you to deal with booking conference rooms for meetings, the system merely reads Outlook or Lotus Notes (as appropriate), and rearranges the cubicles until the meeting particpants are adjacent.

Added benefit: no more fighting over the corner office - everyone's in transit.

[Inspired by thumbwax and po, vertical car parks, blissmiss's incessant whining about cubicles, and, subliminally, the Senate Chamber in Star Wars.]
-- DrCurry, Jul 15 2002

(?) Vertical Car Park
They can do it with cars - they can do it with cubicles. [DrCurry, Jul 15 2002, last modified Oct 05 2004]

IMDB's page for the film 'Cube'. [st3f, Jul 15 2002, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Wagie Cagie
[Voice, Dec 01 2019]

Cubicle Dodgems ? This sounds fun, and has a lot of advantages. The "office" is just a huge warehouse space with lots of robotic cubicles endlessly shuffliing round. If someone is away, theur cubicle canm be "parked" in a maintainance area. Periodic reorganisations can be achieved with a few clicks of a mouse. No embarrsing empty desks after massive layoffs. If you move to another building, your cubicle can be shipped with you.

I bet a camera placed overhead would detect some fascinating patterns ...
-- 8th of 7, Jul 15 2002

The connectors for power, telephones and network would be interesting.
-- angel, Jul 15 2002

No pilots necessary. The cubicles could be moved by the same software used in dockyards for directing container cranes around.
-- angel, Jul 15 2002

Surely also inspired by the film 'Cube' in which prisoners are shuffled around in rooms within a booby-trapped prison. [link added]

If this is inspired by 'Cube' then it's an good reworking, if not then an nice idea. Croissant.
-- st3f, Jul 15 2002

angel: Power's the only real problem, plus keeping the Accountants away from any sunlight 'cos they crumble to dust .... the network and the phones can run over a common high--bandwidth RF LAN like 802.11b.

The Cubicle could have an on-board battery to power it while it was moving, which isn't that often. When it stops, it docks up against another cubicle (with all-round connectors) or a wall (with fixed-spacing connectors) and recahrges from the power grid. Network service goes hardwired at the same time, reducing the load on the RF LAN (used only when a cubicle is in motion).

blismiss: there won't be any motion sickness, these AGVs are pretty slow and gentle; you might not even notice you were moving.

st3f: "prisoners are shuffled around in rooms within a booby-trapped prison" - yes, that's our office ....
-- 8th of 7, Jul 15 2002

blissmiss: and ... yes ... YES .... THE CUBICLES CONTINUE TO OPERATE AS NORMAL FROM THEIR ONBOARD BATTERIES ! HURRAH ! All they have to do is stop where they are and wait for the power to come back. Even the network keeps going.

Even better, in normal mode, if you don't know where someone works, you can go to them - or get the system to bring them to you (depending on how senior you are). I can envisage some poor lowly engineer caught in a game of "cubicle tug" between two senior managers at different ends of the building who both want him in their meeting ....
-- 8th of 7, Jul 15 2002

You say this would be slow moveing so that people don't feel the effects of the movement. This is highly ineffecient, as is this whole system. It is far better to have people move, as opposed to moving a large number of heavy and cumbersome objects.
-- [ sctld ], Jul 15 2002

"In the event of fire do not use the cubicle elevator"
-- pottedstu, Jul 15 2002

[ sctld ]: The AGVs I've worked with moved at a fast walking pace, but they accelerated and dcelerated very smoothly (except when they did an emergency stop). They were fun to ride on, and quite safe.

"as opposed to moving a large number of heavy and cumbersome objects" - yes, but on a alrge site, a lot of time can be wasted just walking from place to place. This way, you can work as you go. As to the heavy and cumbersome objects, yes, the PHB offices could be in fixed locations, to keep them out of the way.

FURTHER THOUGHT: When the photocopier goes wrong, it could automatically trundle off to the maintainance bay, and be replaced with a "good" one from the adjacent copier warehouse.
-- 8th of 7, Jul 15 2002

In a surreal touch, the only stationary object in the entire building will be the tea trolley.
-- hippo, Jul 15 2002

I want the whole building to be a Rubik's Cube of office cubicles. When the each side has only one color, then all may go home.
-- FarmerJohn, Jul 15 2002

And don't forget the perpetually mobile stationery cupboard.
-- DenholmRicshaw, Jul 15 2002

Obligatory Diesel Generator Backup Post
-- thumbwax, Jul 16 2002

random, halfbakery