Extensible USB Ports. Simple, Elegant, but Likely Impractical

From designer Gonglue Jiang, an award-winning concept for fitting infinite USB ports in a tight space:


Oh, how I want to like this design. It’s elegant. It’s simple. It’s sort of pretty with the color coding…but I’m just not sure it works in the real world.

Here are the major difficulties as I see them:

  1. When used with more than a couple of devices, power becomes an issue (although there’s another cable that can be hooked in, apparently, to address that).
  2. It also sticks out and become a long torque arm after a couple of devices are attached, risking bending and obstruction (I’ve now wrecked two 3G cards this way).
  3. And then there’s the whole, “it requires the world to issue new device cords” part.It’s hard to see a device vendor wanting to pony up the additional cost required to make the change to let other devices play nicely with their device. Your hardwired mouse, graphic tablet, or camera, keyboard, bar code scanner, etc. all would need to fight for the end position, since none come with detachable cables. In those situations, implementing such a solution would require you to do it through external extension cables in order to get any benefit. At that rate, you may as well just pack a USB hub and call it a day…

…or maybe I’m wrong on this. What do you think?


One response to “Extensible USB Ports. Simple, Elegant, but Likely Impractical

  1. I’m with you on this… that and many computers these day seem to come with large numbers of USB ports. I have one that has at least 6 in the back and 2 in the front. I use a USB hub just because it is easier to plug into than reaching around the back when I am using the two up front for something else. Apple has always been good about having ports on the wired keyboards…

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