RT Cunningham


Gadgets and Gizmos, Cables, Cords and Wires - What a Mess!

power strip - gadgets My bedroom is the master bedroom with a master bathroom (naturally). It’s also my personal man-cave since it has oodles of space for things other than the bed. My man-cave is a mess and it’s because of all the gadgets and gizmos and the associated cables, cords and wires. Wireless electricity initiatives are taking far too long and I’m really starting to believe I’ll be dead and buried before it becomes a reality for everyone.

The Gadgets and Mess I’ve Made

As I sit at my old computer desk, tapping away on my laptop computer, I’m frustrated by the mess I’ve made. It’s a necessary mess and without it (and the gadgets), I couldn’t do what I do.

The wall in front of me has three sets of outlets and jacks. Two 110-volt outlets are on the left, two 220-volt outlets are in the middle and the set on the right is a phone jack and a coaxial cable (not being used). There’s a 110v power strip plugged into one outlet, a 220v power strip plugged into another and a DSL/phone splitter plugged into yet another.

The 110v power strip only has chargers plugged into it – three mobile phone chargers, a digital camera charger and a laptop charger (I guess that’s what they call the power cords to laptop computers now). I have the wireless network extender plugged into the other 110v wall outlet. One power strip outlet is still free (of six).

The 220v power strip has the power cord for the DSL Wi-Fi modem plugged into it, along with the power cord for some laptop speakers and the power cord for an external 3.5-inch hard drive enclosure. One wall outlet is still free and one power strip outlet is still free (of four).

I’m lucky I don’t need to plug in any more gadgets.

Autovolt Gadgets

The Filipinos here have a term for any adapter that can handle from 100v to 240v of electricity: Autovolt. I don’t know where that term came from, but it works for me. When we have brownouts, it’s usually only the 220v lines in the city that are affected. Since I have both 110v and 220v lines to my house, I like to plug as many things into the 110v outlets as I can – I avoid owning 110v appliances and I still have a few (none in my bedroom, of course).

As you can probably guess, I have wires all over the floor, with some going to the 220v power strip and the rest going to the 110v power strip. I’m not even counting all the gadgets I don’t have plugged in anywhere. They’re sitting in a closet, waiting to be plugged in when I need them.

A Way to Clean Up the Mess

What I really need is a couple of narrow tables with shelves below the tabletops. Regular computer tables (which I can order from will probably do the trick and I’ll probably order some soon.

It’s not just the cables and wires I have to deal with. The Wi-Fi modem needs to be on top, along with the land line phone (with a caller ID box) I’m required to have (and pay for even though I don’t want it). I don’t even want to have to look at the power strips and such and perhaps I’ll devise something to “hide” them when I don’t need to mess with them.

I’m sure there are things I can do to remove some of the clutter and that’s what I’ll be doing as I can afford it. I’ll replace the speakers with a USB-driven speaker bar soon (I’ve already done so on our other laptop computer).

Fun times (not) ahead.

Photo Attribution: By Ivy Main (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons

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By RT Cunningham
January 16, 2015
House and Home