Or a good way to connect the two devices without single strands?
the 80 conductor ribbon cable version of an IDE cable.
Quotethe 80 conductor ribbon cable version of an IDE cable.What is this cable? The IDE is software it doesn't really have a cable, but if it did it would be the USB cable.
You're thinking of IDE as Integrated Development Environment.
The piece that I don't understand is that modern 80wire IDE cables still have 40pin connectors on each end. So somewhere there is either "magic" to connect a bunch of the wires to GND, which might purposely connect other wires to gnd as well, OR it just leaves half the wires completely unconnected (they'd still shield things "some", maybe), in which case you really have a 40conductor cable.
Why not ask wikipedia?http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallel_ATA#Differences_between_connectors_on_80-conductor_cables
Though the number of wires doubled, the number of connector pins and the pinout remain the same as 40-conductor cables, and the external appearance of the connectors is identical. Internally the connectors are different; the connectors for the 80-wire cable connect a larger number of ground wires to a smaller number of ground pins, while the connectors for the 40-wire cable connect ground wires to ground pins one-for-one.