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Cranking Widgets Blog

By Brett Kelly

Stainless steel shelf with attached lamp

Materials: KVART, GRUNDTAL, Drill, Drill Lube, Center Punch Description: I found this site after doing this, so I didn't take notes on the drill bit sizes, but there are 3.... 1. Drill out a hole for the main shaft of the lamp. When positioning the hole, keep in mind the flange around the base of the lamp. 2. The little hole for the nub that keeps the lamp from rotating.

Electrified candle-holder hangin' out

Materials: RÖNÅS candle-holder, textile cable, lamp socket, drill, shrinking tube Description: After installing a long counter in my combined living room-kitchen a while ago, installing adequate lighting as well was a constant ToDo item on my list. As I was totally not satisfied with all of the affordable pendant lamps I stumbled upon, I clearly had to make one myself.

NASA says 2011 is the ninth warmest year on record

    Why were we born? What is really important in life? Are we living in line with that? Or are we distracted from the point of our existence? Is there a way to get people to wake up and ask these crucial questions? Is there a way to get governments to do so? Because if we are wrecking the place in fulfillment of our human purpose, then so be it.

Make Your Own Powdered Laundry Detergent (18/365)

I’m often stunned at the high price of laundry detergent. If you’re buying Tide, for example, even if you buy the jumbo pack in multiples, you’re still paying over $0.30 per load. Even generic detergents rarely cost much below $0.15 per load. That’s why I prefer to make my own detergent.

The Foldable Udden Desk

Materials: UDDEN drawer unit, PAX BALLSTAD closer door, PERFEKT plinth, plus various bits and pieces. Screwdriver, Sandpaper, Saw etc. etc. Description: This might not be your typical hack that people can try themselves but I hope it will help inspire people to solve their own furniture problems.

Kickstarter: Ikea Expedit hack with record covers

Some thing a little different today. This is a kickstarter project from Shane. I had no idea what a kickstarter project was until now. In a nutshell, it's a website for people to birth an idea and find financial backers for their project. Shane's project is on the Expedit with aluminum door frames that allow record covers to be slotted in. Nice.

SOPA: What You Need to Know

Did you happen to see the Google logo on the search engine’s homepage yesterday? If not, here’s what it looked like: Did you try to look something up on Wikipedia only to see a black screen? You can thank SOPA for both of those blackouts. SOPA, which stands for Stop Online Piracy Act, is an anti-piracy bill that is working its way through congress.

Clear the clutter, build a fort

Pillows, blankets, stacks of books, and dining room chairs are currently the decorations of choice in our living room. My son is going through a fort building stage and we’re lucky we’ve been able to contain it to the living room.

Reader Mailbag: Back Pain Blues

What’s inside? Here are the questions answered in today’s reader mailbag, boiled down to five word summaries. Click on the number to jump straight down to the question. 1. Puzzling through hourly pay rate 2. Career path concerns 3. Working with children 4. Speed reading 5. Getting less sleep 6. Netbook or tablet? 7. Risk Legacy and evolving games 8. Saving for multiple goals 9.

Hacker help: Refinishing an Expedit Shelving Unit

Materials: Expedit bookcase Description: Does anyone know if the Expedit bookcase can be refinished (painted or stained)? I haven't seen anything on the site yet. ~ Kayla

Make 2012 Better by Asking the Right Question

This post is by guest writer Carl Richards. Carl is a financial planner, contributor for The New York Times and Morning Star, and author of Behavior Gap: Simple Ways to Stop Doing Dumb Things With Money. With 2012 still fresh and new, it’s a great time to make a plan to have a better year financially than we did in 2011.

5 SEO Trends Writers Should Target in 2012

Freelance writers need to deal with web content all the time, as more and more of publishing goes online. Although the basic principles of good writing don’t change in the online realm, there are certain differences that writers should be aware of. One of the most important aspects of online content is that it should be easily searchable by search engines, especially Google.

How to Become an Effective CEO: Chief Emotions Officer

Chip Conley, founder of Joie de Vivre Hotels Chip Conley is the founder of Joie de Vivre Hospitality, which he began at age 26 and built to more than 30 properties in California alone. In 2010, Joie de Vivre was awarded the #1 customer service award in the U.S.

Happiness: "You Bring Your Own Weather To The Picnic."

Happiness interview: Harlan Coben. How did I first make the acquaintance of Harlan Coben? His brother and I went to college together, somehow Harlan and I struck up a conversation by email...it's lost in the sands of time. Harlan is the spectacularly successful author of many #1 bestselling, prize-winning mystery novels and thrillers, one of which was also turned into a movie.

Workspace for two

Materials: expedit, vika amon table top,helmer, wood lath Description: The top plate and secure it with wood glue. Screw the wood lath to the wall at the appropriate height and the affix tabletops with wood glue. Helmer rolling cabinets are placed a respective workplace. To increase stability, I've pushed a stable 5cm high pvc pipe between the Helmer and the desk top.