How do you communicate you are busy?

We were just talking about this and thought it might be a good topic for discussion here. At home or at work, how do people know if you can be interrupted or not?

Some examples: In IRC, maybe your change your nick, or set your status in some other messaging client. At home maybe you close the door, or put on headphones. In the street you might put on headphones and keep your eyes down low.

If you have any other suggestions, let us know I think it would make an interesting collection. To be clear, this is just a train of thought and not necessarily something we are specifically trying to address in the SmartHome project.

At work, I tend to put headphones.

At home, it’s more along the lines of “I’m busy right now, can we do this later?”, once someone attempts to interrupt me. In a SmartHome, the best equivalent I can think of would be to have some voice-recognition catch that very specific sentence and mark me as busy.