Startup founder's small minimalist ergonomic home office design-, engineering-, and modification assistance in an existing apartment. Location: Guandu, New Taipei City, Taiwan, R.O.C.
I used to have a tolerable home office back in Finland. I can do this myself, but I hurt already and I think I should hire local help.
Shoestring budget, first phase less than $20k NTD to probe quality/price -ratio.
This project can be considered as prototyping for a startup company "Instant Homes" that would be created with the help of a willing co-founder in Taipei area and my landlady who currently leases furnished apartments to foreigners.
I have a few other startup projects.
Problems with this apartment:
It smells here and is probably unhealthy.
Ventilation is missing unless I open two windows and set up a floor standing fan to circulate not-so-clean air from nearby multi-lane road.
Humid air from shower recirculator fan destroys structures above ceiling.
Unfiltered intake air for air conditioning is conducted above the ceiling a few meters without piping so that dust settles on the bottom of the space above the ceiling to be moistened by the shower fan.
Possible solutions for air:
Under-pressurize the space above ceiling and dump air from there outside, or over-pressurize room space with filtered outside air and flush the space above ceiling with it to prevent existing moistened structure smell from leaking to the room. Obviously provide filtered replacement air to compensate for the exhaust.
Pipe shower fan air outside through mesh so that no insects can crawl in.
Filter and pipe air conditioner intake air properly above ceiling.
Recycling cabinet has been left undesigned and should be adapted to the building's waste management shack.
Office ergonomy has been ruined with home-appropriate low-duty furniture. Possible solutions: Replace desk with two height-adjustable desks. Possibly replace one office chair with reclining office chair, and the other with a saddle chair.
Entertainment / secondary workstation:
Back in Finland I used to have a home theatre with 120-inch screen and recliner chair that I used as a workstation, and a standing desk to which I could switch any time. It was cheaper, ergonomic, and awesome for movie nights and music listening.
Current solutions in Taipei are awful hacks compared to it; 15.6 inch laptop on an IKEA sitting desk with absolutely no standing option. A 42-inch TV on a pole that can't be turned away from the bed. No good backrest/bed wedge for the bed to function as a workstation. "Sound system" is a set of bluetooth noise-cancelling headphones that clip sound way too often.
Redesign holistically around a surround sound system. Prefer to use TV as computer display. Note that matte-screen TVs are hard to find nowadays, so glare might become very annoying during sunny days.
I used to have a timed wake-up light, very bright. It woke me up without alarm and kept seasonal affective disorder in control. Here I sleep too late because there is no wake-up light and no timed mechanism pulling open the darkening curtains. Either would suffice.