What about “standing seats” in transport?
All transport systems seem to be suffering from capacity and overcrowding posing the question of how can we fit more people on the train, plane, etc?
Perhaps as its usual PR-approach Ryanair have suggested that standing seats might be a way forwards. This article on the BBC website lines a number of people up to shoot the idea down as far as aviation is concerned (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/8779388.stm).
But what about in rail? Could it help in the very crowded urban rail environments where just standing in the armpit of our neighbour is the reality for many of us?
Well in our user-focused world these seats might offer some support that is preferable to standing but doesn’t allow the passenger to do many of the things they want to on a train – sleep being an obvious one. Although tasks like using laptops for work or reading would be possible and actually easier than when standing. Luggage is probably still a bit of a problem. However, it would give a more enclosed personal space which is something that most of us look for in the uncomfortable world of commuting.