Tired of the generic grey boxes that fill corporate offices? A New York Times piece looks at the efforts by some hardware resellers to soften the edges of the PC with elements from nature. The piece goes over the efforts of places like Suissa Computers, which offers 'desktop computers in cases of oak, walnut, zebrawood, purpleheart, mahogany, maple and leopardwood'. Likewise, Holzkontor of Neustadt and the company Wood Contour offers keyboard and monitor sets that adds a naturalistic touch to the average soulless desktop setup. They don't just touch on commercial options, talking briefly about homebrew case-mods: "Nicholas Falzone, 20, a third-year architectural student at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, Calif., is just putting the finishing touches on the second computer case he's made. 'It's taken me at least a thousand hours,' he said. The case has an aluminum interior frame to support the computer workings. The outer frame is made of koa and maple. Mr. Falzone did the rough cuts with a table saw; after that, almost all the work was done with hand tools. 'Each joint has multiple mortises and tenons,' he said. 'I didn't use any screws or glue.'" Interesting to see the beautification of PC cases in the pages of the old grey lady.