Tim Bray recommends to Avoid Heathrow At All Costs -- indeed a good idea, and there's also a lot of amusing commentary to be read there.
One of the more interesting comments points to Architectures of Control, which discusses how designs of buildings or objects aim to control and manipulate their users.
Case in point? Heathrow, as reported by the Guardian:
Flying from the new Heathrow Terminal 5 and facing a lengthy delay? No worries. Take a seat and enjoy the spectacular views through the glass walls: Windsor castle in one direction; the Wembley Arch, the London Eye and the Gherkin visible on the horizon in the other.
But you had better be quick, because the vast Richard Rogers-designed terminal, due to open at 4am on March 27 next year, has only 700 seats. That's much less than two jumbo loads, in an airport designed to handle up to 30 million passengers a year.
There will be more chairs available but they will be inside cafes, bars and restaurants. Taking the weight off your feet will cost at least a cup of coffee.
(And, in case you're wondering, my luggage typically gets lost at Charles de Gaulle or Schiphol...)