The Grauniad gets all excited about the idea that coffee shops are becoming a transitory space between work and home, where you can relax or carry out business:

Whipless or Skinny? Our flirtation with the bean gets serious:

‘Coffee shops have become the third space for consumers,’ said Mariel Loriega, senior project manager with management consultancy Allegra Strategies, who has been researching the sector over the past year and co-wrote the report.

Fair enough. I ran a feature on a similar theme nine months ago and, as we pointed out at the time, it’s hardly a new idea. After all, the coffee shops of the 17th Century played almost exactly the same role.