Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Infographic: Big Data Scientists

This is Halloween: Dan Buckley's take on the Danny Elman's Classic

Tori Boggs’s Incredible Jump Rope Skills

Friday, October 11, 2013

70+ Best jQuery Text Effects Tutorials with Demo 2013

Squiggle : Scribble out your content with jQuery Plugin

September 25, 2013 | Plugins, Text Effect

Squiggle : Scribble out your content with jQuery Plugin

This jQuery plugin will generate a HTML5 Canvas made png to draw a ‘squiggle’ over your text, like a strike-through or underline.You can configure the plugin, with scribble thickness; colour; intensity or leave it in its auto state, which will callibrate itself to match your text’s CSS.

Read More Demo


Super Simple Text Rotator with jQuery

September 18, 2013 | Animation, Plugins, Text Effect

Super Simple Text Rotator with jQuery

A light weight jQuery plugin that will allow you to add a super simple rotating text to your website with little to no markup.

Read More Demo


titlesequence.js : jQuery plugin for doing animated title sequences

September 13, 2013 | Animation, Plugins, Text Effect

titlesequence.js : jQuery plugin for doing animated title sequences

This plugin simplifies the creation of animated title sequences in the style of opening titles or closing credits for a movie, or indeed any style you can achieve with HTML and CSS.

This plugin allows you to define a sequence of events to be played back in the selected container element. Typical events might include:

  • adding text, images etc at particular x/y coordinates
  • fading text in or out by animating opacity
  • scrolling text up or down by animating the position
  • wiping text in or out by animating the element width

Read More Demo


CircleType.js : jQuery plugin for setting type on a circle

September 3, 2013 | Plugins, Text Effect

CircleType.js : jQuery plugin for setting type on a circle

Circletype.js is a tiny jQuery plugin that lets you set type on a circle.


  • Use any font
  • Adjust letter-spacing as usual with CSS
  • Flip it around so it reads counter-clockwise instead
  • Set the radius manually or let CircleType.js figure it out for you
  • Works in fluid and responsive layouts
  • Plays well with FitText.js

Read More Demo


novacancy.js : Text Neon Golden effect jQuery plug-in

August 31, 2013 | Plugins, Text Effect

novacancy.js : Text Neon Golden effect jQuery plug-in

novacancy.js is a text neon golden effect jQuery plugin.

Read More Demo


HATCHSHOW : jQuery Typesetting plugin

August 30, 2013 | Plugins, Text Effect

HATCHSHOW : jQuery Typesetting plugin

Hatchshow will automatically add a span to each line of text and scale the font size so each line ends up the same width. This is another plugin that’s useful for creating classic or vintage designs.

Read More Demo


FlowType.js : jQuery plugin to Auto-resize the Font-size

August 27, 2013 | Plugins, Text Effect

FlowType.js : jQuery plugin to Auto-resize the Font-size

FlowType.JS is a jQuery plugin which can auto-resize the font-size and line-height (according to the width of the element wrapping it) so that our content is displayed just as we prefer. The plugin has options for setting the min/max font-sizes and min/max widths where the resizing will be triggered. It also works fine with webfonts and a nice demo shows how it works (just resize the browser for the demo page).

Read More Demo


jQuery Text Highlighter Plugin

August 24, 2013 | Plugins, Text Effect

jQuery Text Highlighter Plugin

jQuery Text Highlighter is a jQuery plugin for highlighting text fragments in HTML documents.Highlighting is realized by wrapping selected text in <span> tags.


  • Highlighting text that spans multiple HTML tags.
  • Removing highlights.
  • Setting highlight color and custom text wrapper.
  • Callbacks for highlighting and removing highlights.
  • Serialization & deserialization of highlights.

Read More Demo


Responsive-Measure : jQuery Responsive Ideal Measure Plugin

August 7, 2013 | Plugins, Responsive, Text Effect

Responsive-Measure : jQuery Responsive Ideal Measure Plugin

Responsive Measure is a simple script that allows you to pass in a selector (ideally the container where your primary content will go) which generates the ideal font size needed to produce the ideal measure for your text.It also has the ability to generate a resolution independent font-scale based on the ideal font-size.

Read More Demo


Succinct : jQuery plugin for Truncating Multiple lines of Text

August 2, 2013 | Plugins, Text Effect

Succinct : jQuery plugin for Truncating Multiple lines of Text

A tiny jQuery plugin for truncating multiple lines of text.Succinct shortens your text to a specified size, and then adds an ellipsis to the end.

Read More Demo


More @ link by Sanchit Soni

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Letting Go: How to Live With the Loss of a Loved One – ZenHabits


Note from Leo: This is a guest post from my friend, Suraj Shah, who wrote this post as a favor to me after a reader asked about how to deal with the loss of a loved one.

Suraj writes regularly about dealing with loss on his blog, Live With Loss.

I’ll hand it over to Suraj now:

Editor’s Note: Guest post by Suraj Shah.

In the midst of a busy life flooded with demands from all directions, the loss of a loved one can be striking enough to stop us in our tracks, forcing us to evaluate what’s important and question how to move forward in life.

But the months following the death of someone we care about can be filled with a whole array of emotions ranging from anger and sadness, through to guilt and even relief.

The grip these feelings have over us can leave us feeling stuck, confused and distraught.

The single biggest cause of this ‘stuckness’ is attachment – gripping firmly onto someone who is no longer in your life, and the pushes and pulls that make that relationship what it is.

Lets explore this root cause of the pain that you may be going through and discover a way to calm the volatile emotions.

1. Identify the attachments in your relationship

We can start by looking at the various types of attachments from your relationship.

What pains you the most about them no longer being in your life? What are the pushes and pulls that made your relationship what it was?

  • shelter: You may have depended on them to look after you, to care for your health, to keep a roof over your head.

  • companionship: You may miss them being in your life – someone to hang out with, to have a coffee with, to watch a movie with.

  • someone to confide in: They may have been one of the few people who you could talk to about anything, who you could trust to keep a secret, to help you work through problems in other areas of your life.

  • attending events: They may have been the one attending all events and social functions with you. You may be terrified at the prospect of now attending them alone – perhaps you’re even considering not attending social events at all.

  • doing work around the house: They may have been a master in the kitchen or the DIY expert. Now who will make your meals? Who will fix the leaky tap?

  • managing finances: They may have been the primary breadwinner, or perhaps contributed to your household’s monthly expenses. You may be concerned about how you’ll now manage.

  • organisation: They may have been perfect at keeping everything in order in your life or your business. Without them, you fear that everything will be up in the air.

  • humour: They may have been the playful mischievous one in the relationship – the one who kept things light when the world got too serious.

  • unresolved issues: Perhaps you had a fight before they died, or you both harboured resentment for many years and never managed to resolve it.

  • role of carer: They may have had a painful long term illness where you were caring for them. The role of carer may have been your identity for a long time. Now you may feel their pain has ended and you no longer have to care for them 24/7. Perhaps you feel relieved that you don’t have to be a carer anymore. You may even feel guilty about feeling relieved, coupled with confusion about who you are now that your identity of being the carer has been stripped away.

These are just a few ideas to get you thinking about the source of the feeling you may be experiencing. They’re there to help you work out what it is you may miss about them no longer being with you – and also what you feel now that they’ve gone.

2. Introspect the true nature of the relationship

Having identified the various attachments from your relationship, we can now start to take a closer look at the true nature of your relationship, and of the attachments that bound you to each other.

It’s time for some important and perhaps difficult questions. But if you can be sincere with yourself, you will be able to start to loosen the grip that these attachments and these emotions have over you.

Q: Were they going to live forever?

The various people we have in our lives, particularly those closest to us such as our parents, our siblings, our husband or wife, and our children – we think will be around forever.

We take them for granted. We expect that when we see them off in the morning and head to work or to school, that we’ll see them again in the evening.

But we know, from our experiences in life and from what we see in the news, that this isn’t always the case.

In life, death is inevitable. It is also unpredictable.

It’ll happen to us all, and to all those we are so fond of, but we just don’t know when.

We started with this question – probably the hardest to think about and to accept – but is one that is essential for us to look life straight in the eyes and say:

“Yes, ok, let me live fully now that I see life for what it is.”

Q: Was your attachment permanent or temporary?

Take a look at each of the attachments in your relationship and ask yourself: Was it permanent or was it temporary? While they lived, did you have that all the time, or did it come and go?

Lets delve into a few of the attachments we identified earlier:

  • attending events: Did you ALWAYS attend events together? What about before you met each other? What about when one person was unwell or just didn’t feel like going? Perhaps at times you went alone or with someone else. Did you manage ok? Now that the one you love is no longer with you, you could comfortably attend events alone or with someone else. You may even choose to reduce the number of events you attend from now on and start to do other activities and form a different social circle. Even that’s ok.

  • managing finances: Did you ALWAYS have them as a source of income for your household? Was there ever a point in your life where you managed ok financially by yourself? Did you ever get financial support from someone else in your life? The loss of a loved one can cause a large financial hit and this can add a lot of pressure to life. But there may be solutions available to help reduce this burden. It may mean temporarily receiving financial support, changing to a job that pays more and where you are doing the work you love, or minimising your outgoings.

  • role of carer: Although you may feel guilty at the relief that you don’t have to constantly care for them anymore, think back to a time when you didn’t have to care for them, when they were independently able to do whatever they needed. Were you ALWAYS a carer? Have you had other roles in your life? Think about what you might want to start doing again, or perhaps take on a new role doing something you’ve never considered before.

    “It might seem sad, but we are forced to reinvent our lives when a loved one dies, and in this reinvention is opportunity. Which I think is beautiful.” – Leo Babauta

You will find, as you introspect further, that you sought some form of happiness, comfort or control from each element of the relationship. But was any of this constant and long lasting?

You’ll see that it wasn’t. Throughout your entire relationship together, it came and it went.

Nothing in the world around us or in the relationships that bind us is constant or permanent.

Q: What is truly everlasting?

So if nothing in the world around us is permanent, then what is truly everlasting? What can you hold onto? What can you blend tightly with your heart?

It’s their qualities. Who they were at their core.

When I think about my mum, I remember what she gave that was everlasting and what I now hold firmly in my heart:

  • laughter and lightness
  • calm and patience
  • always present and a great listener

Recollect what you loved the most about them, what they taught you, what they have helped you to become.

Imbibe these in your life. These can stay with you forever.

3. Let go to cultivate life-lightening detachment

Letting go is a gradual process.

Take a good honest look at each of your attachments and gradually let each one go – allowing yourself the time and the space to appreciate the transitory nature of the world in which we live.

By introspecting on the true nature of your relationship, your pain and sorrow will gradually lift away. You will feel lighter.

This will bring about a type of detachment in all your relationships that keep them rich while together with someone, yet help you to experience less suffering when you naturally part ways.

“Pain is inevitable; suffering is optional.”

Wishing you calmer days ahead and clarity over the purpose with which you lead your life.

7 years, 7 lessons


Today marks seven years since mum died. I’ll share with you seven lessons that I have learnt since that time that help me to lead a calmer and more purposeful life.

Currently I write from a small village in the heart of Gujarat in India. I am a third of way into a ten week stay at the Raj Saubhag Ashram and am about to retreat into a week of solitude in silence.

As it is the first anniversary of mum’s death since 2006 where I am without family around me, I write with the understanding that you, my dear readers, my friends, are sitting right here next to me.

The past seven years

Since mum passed away in September 2006, there have been many ups and downs in my life, with a whole array of emotions and occasional moments of clarity.

  • Love: I met a wonderfully compassionate yet feisty woman, fell in love with her and got married. We’ve been through an emotional rollercoaster, just like every other couple, but now we’re closer than ever.

  • Family: As mum got more ill and when she passed away, I found myself increasing the distance with the family. But now I’ve allowed myself to get closer to them and have realised how important family really is. There have been many family events in the past seven years, weddings in particular, where mum has been sorely missed.

  • Work: I’ve been through various types of jobs and temporary roles in the past seven years, from supporting small businesses to go digital, through to sales, to stacking DVDs on shelves and most recently digital training. In all this work, nomatter how outwardly mundane or challenging the task may have been, I’ve learnt some great skills and met some incredibly smart and good natured people along the way. Yes, and equally important, I’ve brought in an income.

  • Spirituality: As mum’s health was quickly declining, I had come across twelve reflections to cultivate detachment, the first of which helped me to tell apart the permanent from the impermanent in life. This led to further exploration and introspection, and I found myself surrounded by an incredibly humble group of friends who understand who they are at their core, yet lead simple pragmatic lives grounded in spiritual values.

I share this so you can see what can happen after a significant loss, and how life takes many twists and turns. But somehow, you find a way through it.

Lesson learnt

While my mum’s health was deteriorating and in the months and years after she died, I started to question why events occur the way they do for us and what the point of it all is.

As I started to ask myself these questions, I navigated towards people who could sincerely help answer them, or help me find out for myself. This is still work in progress, but here’s where I am so far.

From all the ups and downs and changes in all areas of my life over the past seven years, let me share with you lessons I now try to embrace that help me lead a calm and purposeful life.

Lesson 1 – Everything changes

Everything you hold in your hands, everything you can touch, see, hear, taste or smell, will one day change or will go. What was once formed by bringing together various elements will one day fall apart or transform into something else.

Change is inevitable.

Witness the changes. Be an observer and let the change take place as it needs to. Just don’t let it bring you up or pull you down.

People and items will come and go in your life. Make the most of the time with them when they are there, but don’t grip on so tightly that it tears you up when you separate. Because it WILL come apart… and that’s ok.

Lesson 2 – Know the priorities of your relationships

Figure out the key people in your life and focus most of your energy on them. For most people it will be:

1. Your parents: Those who gave birth to you, who nurtured you, who gave you the foundations to lead the life you live now.

2. Your siblings: Those you grew up with and may have fought with, but who you now laugh with, who will be your immediate support and who will need your support during difficult times. This also includes any brother-in-laws or sister-in-laws.

3. Your spouse: The one you share your life with. The first one you say “good morning” to and the last one you say “goodnight” to each day. The one you trust with your heart, share all your secrets with, and hold each other firmly enough through life’s ups and downs.

4. Your children: The ones you brought into this world, who you nurture, who you are there for whenever they need you. The ones who get your love and your guidance and your approval, always.

It sounds obvious, but how many of us truly spend quality time fulfilling our duty towards those who are most important to us and those who depend on us?

When I realised that I was spending far too much time trying to prove myself and make myself look good in front of a large group of casual acquaintances at the expense of serving my closest relationships, I ditched those channels. I got rid of my smartphone, I deactivated my Facebook account, and I jumped off WhatsApp.

I may start to use all these again, but only when I can use them responsibly and can first take care of my responsibilities towards those who are closest to me.

Lesson 3 – Every situation is optimal

“Jeh thaay, ee saara maate thaay chhe (Whatever happens, happens for the best)” – Laxmiben Harakhchand Dodhia (my grandma)

Every single thing you face in life, no matter how demanding it may be, is actually conducive to you leading a calm and purposeful life.

You may not see the good in it yet, and it may not go the way you want, but the situation that has arisen is perfect for your ultimate happiness. You just have to respond to it appropriately.

Be optimistic and stay positive, nomatter what life throws at you.

Further reading: Lead an optimal way of life

Lesson 4 – Seek out eveyone’s qualities

When your loved one dies, it may crush your heart to think that you’ll never be able to see them again, to hold them, to hear them laugh or to wipe their tears. You may have keepsakes – perhaps an item of clothing or a book or a gift you received from them or gave to them – but it’s never the same. These all fall apart and eventually leave you with emptiness.

But there is something that you can always keep hold of firmly in your heart – something that can never leave you, nomatter the outside forces.

It’s their qualities. These shine through, long after they’ve gone. These you can hold up in the air and be proud of. Qualities are everlasting.

In a similar way, with all those people you come into contact with in your day-to-day life, seek out their qualities and imbibe them in your presence.

When you focus on the qualities of those you admire, you become that yourself. It grows within you and you may not even realise it.

It may be that your view of how someone should be may not align with how they’re behaving. So accept them for who they are, notice what is wonderful about them, and appreciate that. Just accept, notice and appreciate.

Be grateful for the greatness that makes up your world.

Lesson 5 – Speak up, but remain calm

For the longest time I would be passive in the way I engaged with the world. If something didn’t go the way I expected, I would just sit to the side and not want to rock the boat. But within me was a different story. I would be quietly frustrated, at times furious, and let this bubble up within me. Then I would be horrible to the people who love me. I believe the psychologists call this “passive-aggressive”.

Now I’ve learnt to speak up where appropriate. It doesn’t mean make a big drama over every little thing, but it does mean observing how the people in your life are behaving towards you and then speaking with them about it if required.

But most importantly, remain calm, or don’t say a word. Anything said with frustration or anger will bite you a hundred times in return.

Lesson 6 – Log your inner gremlins

Yes, we all have them. Our inner gremlins make us horrible people at times, but with awareness we can overcome them.

These gremlins are grouped into four main categories:

  • anger: Anytime something doesn’t go our way, we become angry, or mildly frustrated. This hurts those we love and it hurts us.

  • greed: Anytime we are not content with what we have, we become greedy for more. This greed builds on itself and before long it destroys everything we hold dear in our lives.

  • ego: Anytime we think we have done something great, our ego inflates and we become smug and annoying to others. Anytime we are criticised and can’t calmly learn from it, our ego deflates, we get upset and we hurt the ones we love.

  • deceit: We lie when we want something and the truthful approach takes more work. Lies hurt those we love and lying hurts us.

Every evening, before going to bed, take a little time out to log these gremlins in your notebook. Think about (i) the situation that caused it, (ii) how you reacted to the situation, (iii) how you felt about that and (iv) what you resolve to do next time.

Over time, you’ll notice these gremlins start to reduce in intensity and lighten the load you carry. With awareness comes lightness.

Lesson 7 – Life is unpredictable

We typically take life for granted, but none of us know how long we each have to live. We may live another 60 years, or we may take our last breath this very evening.

Life can be short and extremely unpredictable. You probably know that better than anyone else.

Ask yourself what this life is all about, for you. What’s the purpose with which you wish to lead your life?

Further reading: Last day living

Moving forward

My experiences over the past seven years and the people who have been a part of my life have shaped how I now see the world and how best to live within it.

These lessons are ones I’m trying to apply to my life every day – I have yet to master them fully, but it’s work in progress with the view that they’ll make me a better man.

I hope some of these may be useful in your life as you navigate your way forward following the loss of a loved one.

Written by Suraj Shah. Inspired by greatness.

The real shock of loss

From the moment we wake to the time we lay our head to rest on the pillow at night we are constantly doing something or the other.

We are constantly seeking out some type of happiness, hiding from what we fear, numbing our pain.

Wrapped up in this same old drama, day in, day out — having never found true happiness — we fumble our way through life.

The wake-up call

Here is a story about the ever-changing nature of the world around us.

There’s a guy named Jake who lives on the streets in central London. Through an unfortunate turn of events, he lost his job and couldn’t afford to pay his rent, so was kicked out of his flat and is now homeless. He has no family nearby to help him out and his so-called friends no longer want to know him.

Jake hasn’t had a decent meal for three days, so is out begging to get some food. Many people pass him by, but no-one wants to give him any money.

The shops have just finished trading for the day and the kind-hearted local baker comes out of his shop with a paper bag of leftover chocolate chip muffins and offers it to him.

Jake thinks “hey, food is food — better than nothing.” He heads over to nearby Hyde Park, finds a quiet place to sit, places his dirty and tattered sleeping bag on the ground and has his ‘meal’.

He delves right into the muffins and they’re delicious. Absolutely scrumptious. He polishes them off. It settles his hunger but makes him a little drowsy.

As it is a mild winter evening and daylight is almost out, Jake takes his tatty bag, places it under his head, lays down and gently closes his eyes.

The drowsiness caused by the sweet muffins puts him into a deep deep sleep.

In his sleep, Jake dreams that he is a highly successful businessman. He is wearing slick suits, lives in a huge country mansion, has his own personal chef to cook him anything he wants at any time and is chauffeured around in his top-of-the-range Bentley. He attends the coolest parties, where beautiful women flock to his feet. He has attained great respect from heads of state and members of the local community.

He experiences an unusually happy dream where he has all the worldly pleasures and enjoyments he could ever desire. He is so captivated by this dream that he begins to feel that this dream is real life.

With London being London, the mild winter evening becomes not-so-mild. As the wind picks up, the trees start to rustle. A storm is about to hit London. Typical British weather!

Along with flickers of lightning emerges strong loud thunder and a heavy downpour of rain.

Upon hearing the thunder, Jake suddenly jumps awake from his beautiful dream and is immediately filled with fear. He opens his eyes, looks around and finds nothing from his dream. He is utterly dismayed.

Gone is the mansion, the Bentley and the driver. Gone are the beautifully seductive women. Gone are his staff and his tailor-made suits.

He has no-one to follow his instructions, nor does he have the pride of all that he has acquired in this world. He has lost his fame and fortune. He has lost everything that meant something to him.

Instead he finds himself with his tattered sleeping bag and the empty brown paper bag that has a few tiny crumbs of chocolate chip muffin. Sitting in the pouring rain and the puddles that are starting to form around him, he wakes up to his reality.

Thinking about the difference in his wakeful life and the dream he dreamt, he feels utterly distraught. The dream that brought him such great pleasure no longer existed.

Jake has had his wake-up call. First he did not truly enjoy the pleasures brought about by his dream, and second, all he has gained in real life is the unhappiness and sorrow of losing the pleasures from the dream. No real gain at all.

The transitory nature of the world around us

Just as Jake in the story really enjoyed all the worldly pleasures and happiness in his dream, we too seem to get all wrapped up by the lures of fame, fortune and worldly pleasures.

Then as Jake woke from his dream and realised that those pleasures were false, we too would benefit from realising that all the things we place our happiness in are far from permanent and will only lead to pain and sadness.

It turns out that everything we seek in life will rarely last very long:

  • Wealth and riches: Just as flashes of lightning briefly illuminate the sky but leave behind more darkness than before, wealth and riches may come to us but if we base our happiness on it, we will be left behind as paupers.
  • Power and status: We may at some point get high power and social status, but when it leaves us suddenly we will break down if we base our sense of success and happiness on it.
  • Health and beauty: Just as we are born, so we will die. The young inevitably grow old, or die early. No-one is ever totally free from sickness. Most things we just cannot control, so why base our happiness on what will naturally transform?

Note: The story and examples have been adapted from a book titled “Bhavna Bodha” written by self-realised Jain saint Shrimad Rajchandra in 1886 A.D. — a book (originally written in Gujarati) that I highly recommend to help with contemplation and the development of true unattachment and the clearing away of behaviours that trap us further in life. The first chapter is on anitya bhavna to aid contemplation on the transitory nature of the world around us.

Written by Suraj Shah. Inspired by greatness.

Kids eBooks Subscription Services

  1. Reading Rainbow follows on from the popular TV show with LeVar Burton. The Reading Rainbow app is free to download for iPad or Android and you get one free eBook to try it out. Then there's a subscription service. Inside the app you can move between themed islands including a National Geographic themed island. There are lots of books about nature and famous people as well as traditional story books. The books are full color with pictures and kids can choose to read for themselves or have the books read to them. You also get video clips featuring LeVar Burton as an added extra (and treat for Trekkie parents.)
    Age: 3-9
  2. Speekaboos is a subscription website which also has an iPad app, with an Android app to follow. It's aimed at a younger crowd with interactive fairy tales, folk stories and fables as well as nursery rhymes and songs. Speekaboos uses videos with the pictures and text of the books shown as it is read, sometimes by a celebrity. There's also supporting educational content including worksheets and games. You can try out 10 titles for free.
    Age: 2-6
  3. We Give Books (free) WeGiveBooks is an awesome website that we have been using for a while. It has a selection of free eBooks that kids can read and even better, reading them supports children's literacy charities. There are some excellent books here for reading to younger children and for older children to read for themselves. The website requires Flash so you may be able to use it on an Android tablet.
    Age: Up to 10
  4. Disney Digital Books is a subscription website and app with over 600 Disney themed titles over 5 reading levels. The titles are interactive with audio and a dictionary. There's also a story builder feature and a points system. An interesting options for Disney fans.
    Age: Pre-readers through to Junior Novels
  5. BookBoard is an iPad app that offers over 300 kids eBooks over various reading levels. Kids unlock new books to read as they progress. BookBoard keeps track of their progress. BookBoard has audio so kids can have books read to them. There is a free trial.
    Age: Picture Books - 12
  6. Amazon FreeTime Unlimited is a subscription service for the Kindle Fire that includes kids' eBooks, videos and apps. Here's a list of the Kindle FreeTime Unlimited Content which includes a lot of popular eBooks. There's no learn to read framework around the content.
    Age 3-8
  7. StarWalk Kids Media eLibrary offers a subscription to digital books accessible via website or iPad app. The books can be read to the child or they can read. There's a free test drive of an eBook available. StarWalk has a particular focus on non-fiction titles. There's an educational focus with a search that uses genre and lexile level to find the right books.
    Age: 0-14

All credit to original author @ link

Michigan’s Curriculum And Standards–Common Core MDE

Curriculum Subjects:

Arts | Click here for: Arts
Career and Employability Skills | Click here for: Career and Employability Skills
English Language Arts | Click here for: English Language Arts
Health Education | Click here for: Health Education
Coordinated School Health & Safety Programs | Click here for: Coordinated School Health & Safety Programs
Mathematics | Click here for: Mathematics
Physical Education | Click here for: Physical Education
Science | Click here for: Science
Social Studies | Click here for: Social Studies
World Languages | Click here for: World Languages
Nutrition | Click here for: Nutrition


Michigan Merit Curriculum VPAA Credit Guidelines PDF icon
Arts Standards PDF icon

Career and Employability Skills
Career and Employability Standards PDF icon

English Language Arts
English Language Arts Standards PDF icon

Health & Physical Education
Physical Education Standards and Benchmarks PDF icon
Michigan Merit Curriculum Health - Physical Education PDF icon

Michigan Nutrition Standards Toolkit

8-High School Science Standards
K-7 Science Standards PDF icon

Social Studies
High School Social Studies Standards PDF icon
K-8 Social Studies Standards PDF icon

Michigan Educational Technology Standards (METS)

World Languages
Michigan World Language Standards and Benchmarks PDF icon
World Languages Credit/Experience Guidelines PDF icon

Mathematics Standards PDF icon

10 Contemporary Elements that Every Home Needs


comtemporary home modern materials 10 Contemporary Elements that Every Home Needs

The use of light, new finishes and minimalism to bring contemporary into your home

In this modern day of living there is no doubt that the contemporary movement has affected every aspects of our daily lives. From our cars, fashion and technology to the world of design in architecture and interiors. Many use the term contemporary or modern interchangeably to mean a more relaxed break of traditional norms and new concepts of richness of design and modern age thinking. Modern can also refer to a time period of design style from the 1920’s -1950’s. From bringing in light to dark spaces to opening up floor plans and introducing clean-lined furnishings, here are 10 ways to bring contemporary flair into your interiors.

1. Bring light into interiors effortlessly:

When the Modern and Post Modern design periods began to emerge in the 1920’s-1960’s there was a break from the traditional dark interiors with closed –off rooms and small windows. Light and airy rooms replaced the small and dark ones and these details you can adopt in your own home. Opt for choosing the right floor plan that let in natural light through floor to glass windows, skylights, solar tubes and use translucent glass for privacy areas.

contemporary home kitchen 10 Contemporary Elements that Every Home Needs

Choose subtle colors with accents of vibrant colors for your modern home

2. Opt for subtle colors with accents of more vibrant color you really love.

Using neutral tones of gray, brown, and blacks and whites for flooring, furnishings, lighting fixtures and textiles.  Contemporary colors leave the details of your furniture metal details to shine through or leave the ability for your imagination to get creative with textures and patterns. Just because you use neutral color shouldn’t mean your interiors turn boring! Textural seagrass furniture for example is beautiful to the touch and the eye.

3. Use of natural materials can create a beautifully interior & exterior

Instead of natural materials being reserved to just wood furniture your contemporary home can make use of natural and organic materials in decking outside, leather furniture for your interiors and simple decorative elements displayed throughout your home. The contemporary period of living brought about a new sense of using organic materials such as wood, rock, slate, teak, cotton, wool, and other gorgeous textiles in modern furnishings and not just reserved to traditional home uses.

contemporary home ideas mixing old with new 10 Contemporary Elements that Every Home Needs

Contemporary homes mix natural materials beautifully

4. Airiness brings a more relaxed interior to your contemporary home

Furniture designers started to create sofas, tables, and home furnishings that reflected a more relaxed approach to living. Stuffy and heavy ornamentation was replaced with clean rectilinear lines and this gave way to contemporary homes feeling lighter in weight and more casual in livability. Furniture was raised off the floor to give a weightlessness appeal and your home can adopt these same qualities.

5. Bare floors in gorgeous finishes

The contemporary age of living has made way to new materials, but also a relaxed feeling to interiors with minimal lines, and less “stuff”. Bare floors in gorgeous finishes such as hardwoods, ceramic and porcelain tiles, travertine stone and marble have made way to contemporary living. Area rugs to keep underfoot walking comfortable and to break up the space visually is ideal, especially in living room and dining room areas. Consider bringing resilient flooring into your home for a crisp and modern touch.

contemporary home ideas colors 10 Contemporary Elements that Every Home Needs

Contemporary furnishings provide an airiness to your interiors

6.  Opening up your interiors with an open floor plan

Contemporary homes have a sense of uniting all of the interior spaces into one grand experience. The term “great room” has been used to signify a blurring of the distinct walls and boundaries of living spaces with the kitchen, family room, etc… An open floor plan is ideal and is iconic in contemporary homes and creates a unified design aesthetic throughout your home.

7. Stream-lined contemporary architectural exterior details

While the focus on interiors is often thought of when considering contemporary influences, don’t forget the architectural exterior details that are just as important. Most exterior detailing is free from heavy ornamentation of historic classical buildings and is replaced with simple rectilinear or curvilinear forms. Rooflines are distinct – cantilever or large overhangs, and unique features such as seemingly flat rooflines as well as materials of the exterior usually blend harmoniously with nature around your home in contemporary styles.

contemporary outdoor home ideas 10 Contemporary Elements that Every Home Needs

Exterior architectural details seem to blend harmoniously with nature

8. Attention to contemporary details in your home

Similarly to design periods of the past, detailing is essential in a contemporary home. Fine elements such as lighting fixtures that are distinct and look like works of fine art are kept simple and distinct. Hand railings and banisters that were once large handcrafted pieces of wood in past design decades are replaced with innovative tension cables, glass, or industrial materials. Look to adding contemporary details that get noticed, yet don’t distract your minimal interiors.

contemporary home interior details 10 Contemporary Elements that Every Home Needs

Look to contemporary details in your interiors

9. Technology becomes hidden behind your gorgeous interiors

One of the areas of contemporary design that everyone loves are the “hidden details”. You see the innovative technology in our smart worlds of technology for phones, computers, and also in our homes. Contemporary details of wireless and remote access controls for controlling electronics, heating/cooling systems, lighting, security and more are all hidden behind the beautiful details. Try bringing innovative controls into your home lifestyle and see how much your contemporary home will feel.

contemporary home tv wall 10 Contemporary Elements that Every Home Needs

Use innovation and technology in your contemporary lifestyle

10. Release your ‘old world’ thinking in our contemporary age

There is no doubt that every design age borrows and influences elements from each other. The contemporary era of design is more about letting go of strict and formal design rules and becoming more open and minimalistic in approach. Whether you decide to have a more eclectic home and mix and match past eras or you’d prefer to become ultra-modern in nature, your home should reflect your lifestyle. Release your old world thinking that every piece in your home has to have a label and enjoy contemporary living that is reflected throughout your gorgeous home.

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10 Contemporary Elements that Every Home Needs
Mon, 30 Sep 2013 05:06:23 GMT

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