Things haven’t improved much at all since Douglas Adams wrote his rant about little dongly things. USB was supposed to solve this, but somehow I still have a lot of chargers in the house. Each of the following charges one or more of the battery-powered mobile devices in my household and has a different plug from all the others:

  • Nokia, US plug
  • Nokia, Europlug
  • Nintendo DS
  • Motorola Xoom
  • proprietary USB plug for iPod
  • Dell laptop
  • Acer netbook
  • Electrical shaver
  • Lumix camera
  • AA battery charger for my GPS

Notice how nothing I own charges from a standard USB plug, and AA batteries have almost entirely disappeared. It’s a pretty sad state of affairs. To be truly mobile, I regularly load my luggage with at least half a dozen wires, plus AC converters.

In my utopian future, I don’t want a flying car or a jetpack. I want more standards.