Pair Programming Chairs

by Joey deVilla on August 28, 2008

The development tool company Cenqua have a cute gag ad for a pair programming chair called the “PairOn” — an Aeron built for two:

Cenqua's "PairOn" chair

They list the PairOn’s “key features” as:

  • Fully unit-tested in our ego-free ergonomics lab
  • Essential office furniture for any eXtreme XP Pair (XXPP)
  • Fully adjustable via individual or pair control
  • Can be levered to standup-meeting height
  • 40-hour-week alarm buzzer built in
  • Available in a range of attractive colours

Here’s a pair programming chair that really exists: it’s a set of drawers that doubles as a stool:

TSOT's "Pair Programming" filing cabinate/chair

These are drawer sets mounted on some very good wheels and topped with well-padded upholstery. If you wanted to pair program with someone, you’d simply pull the drawer unit out from under their desk and sit on it. These things were surprisingly comfortable; I’ve spent upwards of two hours sitting on one of these with nary a complaint.

Alas, these aren’t available in stores. They were custom-built for a startup for whom I briefly worked, whose CEOs was more in love with the idea of running a start-up than actually running a start-up. Their last programmer recently ditched them, and I’m hoping to pick up one of these in their bankruptcy sale.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Wes August 28, 2008 at 12:20 pm

I think that “the other company” is using the office space, so I’m not sure if there will be a bankruptcy sale. :(

It’s nuts that they had those custom made though.

2 Carsten Nielsen August 28, 2008 at 12:21 pm

Pair programming is good? Ok that’s it everyone we are now ditching the custom made stool-drawers for 30 PairOn chairs. What’s that, they don’t actually exist? Well we will just get them custom made then won’t we. I haven’t felt this right since we bought that load balancer.

3 Ollie Saunders August 29, 2008 at 10:00 pm

Joey, if that sale does happen.. please, let me know!

4 Julien March 24, 2011 at 2:57 pm

They had these same “file cabinet / stool” in the SAP offices of Palo Alto and I loved them.
I keep searching for such a combination for my home office so my kids can sit and do their homework while I keep an eye on them. No success so far …

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