Too Many Cords

I’m a hopeless romantic.
I have this Eden-esque fantasy where all of the cords to all my hardware are neatly wrapped and labeled and managed and stored out of view.
I often spend entire afternoons with ties and clips and other doodads, attempting to construct this utopia.
And I always fail. Like I did today.
Let’s review:

  1. Powerstrip #1
  2. Powerstrip #2
  3. Powerstrip #3
  4. USB 2.0 #1 drive power pack and power cord
  5. USB 2.0 #1 USB cable to USB hub
  6. USB 2.0 #2 drive power pack and power cord
  7. USB 2.0 #2 USB cable to USB hub
  8. USB 2.0 #3 drive power pack and power cord
  9. USB 2.0 #3 USB cable to USB hub
  10. USB hub to desktop cable
  11. USB hub power pack and cable
  12. Router power cable
  13. Router to DSL Modem cable
  14. Router to Desktop Ethernet cable
  15. Router to Laptop Ethernet cable
  16. DSL Modem power cable
  17. DSL to DSL Filter cable
  18. DSL Filter to phone jack cable
  19. Telephone headset to keypad cord
  20. Telephone keypad to DSL filter cable
  21. Telephone recording adapter to DSL filter cable
  22. Telephone recording adapter to Olympus digital recorder cable
  23. Olympus digital recorder to USB hub cable
  24. Laptop power cable to laptop and to powerstrip
  25. Laptop USB 2.0 PCMIA card with power cord into existing USB slot on laptop
  26. Printer to desktop USB cable
  27. Printer power cord
  28. iPod to desktop cable
  29. Keyboard to USB hub cable
  30. Mouse to Keyboard USB cable
  31. Computer speakers power cord
  32. Subwoofer to desktop cord
  33. Channel left speaker to subwoofer cord
  34. Channel right speaker to subwoofer cord
  35. Audio controller to subwoofer cord
  36. LCD panel power cord
  37. LCD panel to desktop power cord
  38. DVD burner power cable
  39. DVD to USB hub power cable
  40. iSight to Desktop Firewire cable
  41. Mac Mini power cord and power adapter
  42. Cellphone charger
  43. (waiting) USB headset/mic
  44. (waiting in other room) Multi-channel sound mixing board
  45. (waiting in other room) Unidirectional microphone
  46. (waiting in other room) Audio compressor and bord
  47. (waiting in closet) KORG n-360 keyboard
  48. (and I could even count the entertainment area:) TV power cable, TV to DVD cables, PS2 power cable, PS2 controller cables, VCR power cable, TV to VCR cable, DVD speaker cables (five channels + subwoofer)
  49. (almost forgot) My cable cable! For cable TV!

The part that really makes Baby Jesus cry is the adapters that don’t have a cord from the adapter to the plug – you can’t plug those MFs in alongside the rest of the setup into the powerstrips – requiring you to get more powerstrips. I think I need to start wearing one of those monitors that X-ray techs where that can tell you how much radiation you’re absorbing each day.
I next hare-brained scheme would be to make a net or black mesh sheet that acts like an envelope/bag to contain all of this mess and hide it out of view. Or mount a wooden box painted black with a lid on the back of the computer desk to just throw all this stuff in and then have a few holes where the cords can come out.
Wi-fi. My ass, wi-fi.
Paperless office? Cordless office? Don’t make me laugh.

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About Andy Wibbels

Andy is an award-winning blogger and author of the book Blogwild! A Guide for Small Business Blogging. His work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Entrepreneur, Wired, Business Week, Forbes, and other national and international media. He was worked at several San Francisco startups including Get Satisfaction, SAY Media, InMobi, Keas, and Mindjet. Currently, Andy is Director of Marketing at Lucidworks. Tw · Fb · G+ · Li

3 thoughts on “Too Many Cords

  1. Tammy Lenski

    Andy, if you find that Eden, can I come along? Having just crawled out from an hour under my desk, where I’d been trying my latest scheme to make all the cords behave themselves, your post made me laugh–kind of crazed, hysterical laughter. My latest has been to mount a wire mesh basket beneath the desk and run all the cords through it. Sort of worked, but I can already see it’s not the perfect solution. Someone out there’s gonna find one and we’ll all pay her willingly.

    Reply
  2. Jerry Shown

    Ha ha great observations of the common cord tangles, I recently moved my setup to another room in the house and it took me fully an hour to get the lines untangled to move the components.( and now it’s a tangled mess again).
    thanks for the laughs.
    jerry Shown

    Reply
  3. Lorraine Calhoun

    Andy, this was hysterical. Can we win? I just took my laptop, with only its power cord, into an empty room with just a table as a desk. It looks cord free! Then I brought in the printer, and my Maxtor, and it still looks pretty neat. I found I can hide those cords. I left all my chargers and phones etc. back in my office. I am almost positive I am getting more work done without all those ropes of cords. Is this what is meant by simplification?

    Reply

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