USB 3.1

The way work gets saved from active memory to storage memory on computers is through connection pipelines—like USB, FireWire, eSATA, and Thunderbolt.  Then there is video, converting bytes to visual information via VGA, DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort, and also Thunderbolt.  All of these methods (and more) use specific male/female connectors, often with multiple variations.  Among them all, USB has retained the most similarity in the physical plug/port (at least with the Type A connector; there are several other iterations as well) through three major versions of the protocol.  It’s been pretty convenient to have one plug system work for USB for so long, even though it would only plug in while in the proper orientation (if you got it wrong you had to rotate the connector 180 degrees before it would properly slide into place).  That may soon change.  Specifications for a new USB 3.1 “Type C” connector are expected to be finalized next year, and the new plug will be designed to deliver data, power, and video—and will be reversible so it will work when connected in either orientation.  See more on the issue here.

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