Cube farms were a step up from the open offices of the 50's/60's. Then the hipsters decided that cubes were bad and that open offices were the way to go. But the irony is that they are now discovering what was learnt in the 60's. From Cubicle
Propst concluded from his studies that during the 20th Century the office environment had changed substantially, particularly in relation to the amount of information being processed. The amount of information an employee had to analyze, organize, and maintain had increased dramatically. Despite this, the basic layout of the corporate office had remained largely unchanged, with employees sitting behind rows of traditional desks in a large open room, devoid of privacy. Propst's studies suggested that an open environment actually reduced communication between employees, and impeded personal initiative. On this, Propst commented "One of the regrettable conditions of present day offices is the tendency to provide a formula kind of sameness for everyone." In addition, the employees' bodies were suffering from long hours of sitting in one position. Propst concluded that office workers require both privacy and interaction, depending on which of their many duties they were performing.
It's sad that the wheel keeps being reinvented.