Hack Your Dorm: Technology & Tight Spaces
For college students, the end of summer means packing up and moving one’s life into a box-sized dorm room or a shared, cheap apartment. Here at HackCollege, we’d like to make your move smoother and your living space less cramped. One way to do this is to pare down something students own and use a lot of: digital devices.
The television is the largest technological item that most young adults own. If yours takes up a lot of space or you’re thinking of buying one for school, consider the following solutions.
If you don’t watch a lot of television or you plan on going out a lot, skipping the TV altogether is the cheapest and simplest way to save space. You can use your laptop or tablet to browse Netflix and watch campus televisions to catch up on sports.
An alternative to a television set is a projector. Whether you buy a used one, make your own smartphone projector or get the latest Bluetooth model, most projectors are cheaper and easier to transport than television sets. Project directly onto your wall (or a bed sheet hung on your wall) for a personal big screen.
If you want to have your own set, you should consider one that will be easy to move and won’t take up tons of space in your room. A 50-inch 3d TV looks impressive in the store, but it’s a pain to haul up and down stairs at the beginning and end of each term.
Mounting your TV on the wall can keep it out of harm’s way and save valuable shelf space. If you’re not allowed to install hardware in your walls (and you’re not willing to pay the fine), consider putting your TV on a high shelf or using it as a desk monitor for your computer.
“Don’t bring your huge stereo to college—you won’t use it enough to justify its size,” is one of the most common pieces of advice given to college freshmen, and it holds true for all but the most dedicated audiophiles.
If you use your smartphone, tablet or laptop for music, investing in a Bluetooth speaker or adapter eliminates extra wires and the need to keep devices within reach.
If you’re going to use a dedicated stereo, one way to make it less cumbersome is to stack its elements. Put them on top of your fridge, dresser or on a shelf in your closet to save space.
Miscellaneous Personal Devices
Whether you’re a Kindle person or you can’t imagine life without your iPad mini, each of us has an assortment of portable digital devices (and a tangle of charger cables) that could stand to be more organized.
Create a Charging Station
A dedicated charging station is a great way to make sure that you always know where your devices are and that they have plenty of juice. Dish drying racks and desktop file organizers both work well to hold devices while they charge.
Hide Your Cords
If you’d rather not keep everything out in the open, putting a power strip in a drawer, box or crate makes the perfect hiding spot for all of your gadgets.