Saturday, May 05, 2012

A Tangled Web

A new device has appeared on the desk, because I bought it. It is 1tb external hard drive. No more burning things to cds, dvds, transferring to memory sticks, loading to Drop Box. Nope, this backs up everything. It silently sits there unobtrusively adding new things to our sixteen year computer history. I thought to take photo to show you, but it is just a boring black box.

Instead have a look at the mess of wires behind the computer case. The large grey flexible tube was an attempt to tidy them up a little, so that at least there weren't so many wires hanging from the desk, but really, rats could nest in the entanglement and I wouldn't know. Apart from a desk lamp, there eight devices plugged in to the power. Why does one computer need eight lots of power? I have no idea which plug is for what, but we did buy a new power board with a surge protector a couple of weekends ago. The old one, had only four outlets, but this one has six, plus three of the four wall outlets are used, the spare being used for the vacuum cleaner. Still, one double adaptor is needed.

When putting the the power board into position, with lots of old man grunting as I squirmed around under the desk, I discovered all were essential for the computer to function as we knew it. So I suppose I don't need to know which plug does what, as long as they are all plugged in.

Eek, I hope there isn't dust on the skirting board if you click on the pictures. I do clean it, every so often but you'll understand my reluctance to get in the with the vacuum cleaner.

Of note, the double adaptor also has a surge protector. No excuse for not having them now. Two double adaptors with surge protection for $6 and $9 for the six outlet surge protection power board. They are made in China, so I am sure they are quality products and those of you who think the surge protection amounts to the addition of a red light, wash your mouth out and put your faith in global trade.

So if you have a desktop computer, rather than a laptop, does yours have a similarly tangled web behind it?


  1. I have a laptop on my desk which I keep plugged in and a total of nine connections into three power boards from the television, Foxtel IQ, DVD player, laptop, printer, wireless modem and table fan.

  2. Victor, so you too have a rat's nest.

  3. That's not a rats nest that's a nightmare!. No power boards for me my desktop, printer, logitech surround system and lamp are connected to double power points and protected by safety switches in the fuse box, instead of the old fashion fuse wire :-).

  4. I have 3 external HDD's! But they don't get used all the time so they're mostly in storage in the shelf. Leads and things bother me, the ones behind the TV annoy the hell out of me.

  5. Each of your plugs is in its right place now Andrew, but what happens if the cat accidentally strolls past and some plugs fall out? Or the broom knocks a few cords out of their right spots?

    I must admit that my desktop looks much worse! I had to get a the L-shaped desk realigned and a new 6-point electrical wall socket installed, just so I could safely put my feet on the ground under the desk!! Computer, modem, speakers, printer, laminator, desk telephone, desk radio...sigh.

    DVD player? iPad? I would disappear altogether :(

  6. Oh for the simplicity of those very early apples - at each end of every cord was an icon matching the icon on the part it connected with.

    Faster and faster and more and more powerful pc means more and more chances of something going wrong or me never being able to put the bits back together again. I've tried labelling and colour coding but the labels fall off.

    I have boards connected to boards all connected to one power point. There are 3 unused power points in the same spot. Why? Despite numerous 'coming to get you' letters from the smart-metre people, they never turn up. Despite assurances they always test the wiring before installation, there are oodles of reports of electronic equipment blowing up, or house wiring or metre connections starting fires.

    Before we leave the house unattended for any length of time, we go around and pull the pin on everything except fridges and freezer, keeping our fingers crossed for hardwired things like cooling or the heater thermostat.

    Of course one occasionally lifts the tangle of pasta and vacs thoroughly, fearing that a pile of dust will be as volatile as the floury mess behind the great fire of London.

  7. I used to have a similar tangle of cords because everything in the lounge room was plugged into the surge protector power board under the desk. Now I have more power points in this new place so things are more spread out. The laptop cord goes to the double power point under the table and the power board across the room has the TV, DVD player and the heater, while the ipod dock and the lamp are plugged in to the double power point behind the bookshelf. I have one empty socket which takes the vacuum cleaner should I decide to vacuum.
    @FruitCake; you need some of those sticky labels ( wrap around the cord and stick to themselves. Or just paint each plug a different colour with a corresponding dot of colour on the item it belomgs to.

  8. I remember when they first begin talking wireless as they installed routers at the university and I asked them well, why do we still have wires then? I innocently thought we would soon have no wires.

  9. Thanks River, they look smart. Just have to decide now which pack to order.

  10. Mine looks like that and its dusty because you can't really get in there ti clean it properly - its crazy how we still depend on cords so much with all the hi tech.

  11. Sounds very neat Windsmoke. But are safety switches, surge protectors?

    Fen, three is excessive. Three unused ones, well what about the starving babies in Africa? I'm sure they would like them.

    Hels, being animal less and broomless too actually, no danger of that. Our power outlet has four. We should have gone for three of them. You were sensible to get six at least.

    FC, wouldn't a surge protector protect such devices? Pasta tangle, I like it.

    River = organised. Different coloured nail polish for each cord. I'm sure FC has lots of nail polish.

    Rubye, I thought that too. But the wireless router connects to the computer by cord and needs a power cord too. I also believed in the paperless office.

    MC, and when you travel, you have to cart along a heap of cords.

  12. ROFLMAO.
    At skewl the rule was if one was caught wearing nail polish, one would then be required to remove it with steel wool. Never tried it. The very feel of anything gloppy on fingernails makes my skin crawl

  13. Gloopy? No FC. It it dries quickly, one minute nowadays. It looks so pretty. Much to Sister's horror, Little Jo loves her nails painted.

  14. Re the dust on the cords. Get a long handled duster to brush off as much as possible, then use a hairdryer to blow it out to where you can sweep or vacuum it. If two work together One can blo.....
    oops, one can operate the hair dryer while the other operates the vacuum.

  15. Nice work River. In spite of, you have given me an idea.