This is not a question with a single answer, but I am fascinated by the diversity of computer set-ups in the office. Some people work on ancient machines that are absolute donkeys with CRT monitor, whereas others have really complex and elaborate configurations that would make Forex traders jealous.
To add to the intrigue, in a recent job interview I had, the employer stressed several times that "modern high-spec workstations" were provided to developers, including access to latest gadgets in the mobile and tablet world. While this seems like a no-brainer, majority of large companies I encountered don't exactly pump cash into internal technology provisioning, or advertise the kind of hardware they provide to employees.
What are your experiences and opinions on this? Can computers that are not up to the task really be severely detrimental to productivity of programmers? At the end of the day, for companies, it's up to the cost/benefit ratio; Does it make sense to equip IT staff with latest and greatest? Technology is becoming more and more pervasive in everyday life. If a company doesn't keep up, how does that reflect on it?
This is a topic that interests me personally, but I also believe it should be examined in more detail. In addition to opinions expressed here, should you wish to help formalize some research in this area, you can take 5 minutes of your time and fill out the survey at the link below. Thanks in advance! :)