So that its students will not have to endure the humiliation of actually eating with each other, Kyoto University and Kobe University in Japan have installed "lonely seats" (bocchi seki) in its dining hall. The seats have a barrier that runs down the middle of the table that prevents eye contact between diners. This is apparently a good thing? It's designed to help busy students avoid the pressure to socialize. As translated by Kotaku, one student says "When I don't have much time or I'm in a hurry, the lonely seats are convenient." No talking, only eating.
This marks a tide change in the world's acceptance of solo dining: where once there were whole websites dedicated to eradicated lonely diners, now there are pop-ups dedicated to solo dining and, apparently, these Japanese dining-hall cubbies. Paired with the "anti-loneliness" ramen bowls, pretty soon you won't even have to talk to other human beings at all.