Joel argues about the benefits of great facilities in detail in his epic post A Field Guide to Developers, but here's a good summary of his feelings:
Building great office space for software developers serves two purposes: increased productivity, and increased recruiting pull. Private offices with doors that close prevent programmers from interruptions allowing them to concentrate on code without being forced to stop and listen to every interesting conversation in the room. And the nice offices wow our job candidates, making it easier for us to attract, hire, and retain the great developers we need to make software profitably. It’s worth it, especially in a world where so many software jobs provide only the most rudimentary and depressing cubicle farms.We've all heard about the legendary Googleplex (Those constant-stream swimming pools sound awesome!), and I've been to some other cool campuses and headquarter buildings myself but it's easy to think of this type of facility as inaccessible for most developers. I'm glad Joel has shown that small companies can have great offices too.
The New York Times has discovered Joel's new Fog Creek office and written an article about it.