I made a couple of really stupid money mistakes lately that will haunt me for a days, literally many hundreds of minutes. They both relate to networking in the home.
The preface to the story is that I own an Apple Airport Express which acts as a wireless printing hub and will play music wirelessly and will act as a wireless access point. What the Airport Express lacks is extra wired network connections.
So the meat of the story goes like this...
I bought a Tivo a few months ago and one thing that Tivo did that impressed me was that you no longer needed a phone line to set it up. It allows you to do all your set up over a broadband connection. The problem with the for me was that I didn't have any way to have a wired connection to it, so I had to opt for the wireless USB peripheral to connect to the service. That set me back 60 dollars, but that wasn't such a bad deal considering I got my Tivo for free due to some instant rebates and an open box from Best Buy.
Next, I bought myself an XBox 360 for my birthday. As it turns out I bought this to play using the internet, and after arriving home I realized that I had forgotten that I didn't have a way to connect to the internet using a wire. So I started searching for a wireless peripheral to get it connected, and it cost 100 dollars. That is a pretty bad deal considering the price of the system to begin with.
What I failed to realize in the first instance, Tivo, is that it has a Cat5 connector and I could use a wired connection. After looking at the 360 I noticed it also has a Cat5 connector...
And just like that it occured to me that I could buy a cheap router and connect them both in a wired fashion. As it turns out, a wireless router with 4 wired connection options only cost about 30 or 40 dollars, which beat the 100 dollars I would have paid for the Xbox.
So now I have two wireless access points in my 700 square foot apartment. One that is there that I use for my computer, and the other one that connects my Xbox with a Cat5 cable.