Brad Feld

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Fuck The Packaging

Dec 29, 2007

I spent 45 minutes this morning desmegmafying three new Xbox 360 controllers, three new Wii controllers, a Wii charger, and a bunch of videogames.  Thanks to everyone that suggested Wii and Xbox 360 games to me – BioShock ate my morning (after I got the controllers out of their packages.)

My experience reminded me of Mark Cuban’s brilliant post from 2006 titled Seagate Leaves me bloody…  My right index finger is now sliced, my left palm has a cut on it, and my left index finger is still bleeding a little – five hours later.  But I’ve liberated the controllers from their plastic jail, inserted the batteries, and gotten my butt kicked at Wii Table Tennis.

When I looked at the damage I had done (including scraping up over 50% of the brand new controllers I’d gotten, including one particularly gruesome two inch long scratch in the black plastic of a brand new Xbox controller), I pondered the pile of crumpled and useless plastic that will take 154,792 years to decompose.

I spent some time on Wikipedia trying to figure out the type of evil plastic that is used for this stuff and got bogged down in common plastics and their usages.  I now know more about polycarbonates, polystyrene, and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene than I thought I’d ever want to know.

Why, oh why, do consumer products companies insist on using this shit?  There has got to be a better way.  I’m sure I would have done better at Wii Table Tennis if I hadn’t damaged my hands.