The statistical dynamics of laptop power cords

… has anyone ever studied this? Someone ought to. Like, why is it that whenever you fold up a power cord and stick it in a bag for even a few minutes, it comes out tangled? I’m guessing the model would be of random shocks dumping the cord into a state picked from a distribution where, like, gobs of the probability mass is in tangled states, and then the real fun would be in doing the topology to see why.

C’mon, surely there’s a bored mathematical physicist sitting around with tenure and nothing better to do?

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2 Responses to “The statistical dynamics of laptop power cords”

  1. Bill Hoffman Says:

    Actually Paul, someone did this. They won the Ig Nobel prize for it!

    http://improbable.com/ig/winners/#ig2008

    http://www.pnas.org/content/104/42/16432.abstract

  2. Paul Gowder Says:

    Sweet!

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