A followup to Friday’s story about charging devices.

Yesterday, I bought a second external hard drive to back up the hours of audio files I’ve accumulated and want to archive. Like the first one, this drive is made by Western Digital, so you’d think that the same cables could be used for both drives.

You’d be wrong. Sure, the USB cable fits just fine, but the power cable has a completely different configuration!

Why?? Maybe they’ve updated it in the six months since I bought the other drive. Or maybe they have a new cord-and-charger supplier. Or maybe someone in one division of the company isn’t talking to the other guy in the other division.

Regardless, they haven’t made it simple for the consumer — and I thought that’s what the new 21st-century business paradigm was supposed to be about.