Until all electronic devices are wireless, cables will be everywhere. They hang off desktops and lay tangled underfoot. They collect dust and create fire and injury hazards. Luckily, cables can be tamed.
Label cables: Before unplugging all of your equipment, label the cables. Prepare for organizing by getting the things that you’ll need, such as a flashlight, Velcro, and cable ties and sleeves.
Divide and conquer: Divide cables into groups of USB, audio and power. Audio cables that cross power and USB cables should do so at right angles. Parallel placement could cause interference with audio equipment. If you have many USB devices, simplify their connections with a USB hub. USBs can also be plugged one into another, or daisy-chained, so only one power cord is needed for all.
Ties and sleeves: Cable ties are handy for binding excess wire. Cords of a similar kind can be run through a cable sleeve – a long tube with a slit down its length. Foam pipe insulation makes an inexpensive cable sleeve.
Left, right and under: If cables run off both sides of your desk, use separate surge-protected power bars on left and right. Secure power bars to the floor with screws or Velcro. Fasten cables to the underside of the desk, where they won’t become unsightly tripping hazards. When running cables along walls, tack them into place or hide them behind crown molding with a product like WireTracks.
Be vigilant: Once your wiry beast is tamed, be vigilant as new peripherals are added.