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coast

Desalination: Good For Israel. Good For California?

The New York TImes reports today on how Israel is mitigating a shortage of much-needed rain by desalinating seawater. California, reeling from its driest winter in history, has a long coast line and the same opportunity as Israel. Of course, the problem with desalination is that it requires a lot of energy. According to the […]

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Amsterdam Architects Build Full-sized Home With 3D Printer

Amsterdam Architects Build Full-sized Canal House With 3D Printer

Leave it to those Amsterdammers! Famous for their red light district, Old Dutch Masters, and gorgeous canal houses, one is now being built with a 3D printer. A few weeks ago, Annemarie Coevert of the Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad reported how DUS architects designed the world’s first building being constructed with a 3D printer. Visitors […]

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Rem Koolhaas Back In Baghdad By The Bay

For several weeks, I have had page C2 of the SF Chronicle sitting on my desk. Its City Insider column announced on March 18 that “Dutch superstar architect Rem Koolhaas is getting another crack at San Francisco.” While I never like to see the word “crack” mentioned anywhere near the topic of construction, I suppose this […]

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“Catch A Contractor” — Is It Worth Watching?

‘Catch A Contractor’ — Is It Worth Watching?

Short answer: No. A better title for this show is ‘Lost.’ It applies to the homeowners who did not do their due diligence; to the fellows selling themselves as contractors but could not care less; and unfortunately to the hosts of the show, as well. The show is much like ‘America’s Most Wanted’ or ‘Cops’, […]

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Contractor State License Board Goes Undercover

California’s Contractor State License Board Goes Undercover (video)

California’s Contractor State License Board shows unlicensed ‘contractors’ that doing remodel work without the appropriate license is not cool. The Board also attempts to fight abuse of the elderly. Finding answers to these problems certainly has Remodel Blog’s support, but what is the right way to go about it? The videos recently posted to the CSLB […]

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Photo © RemodelBlog.net 2013

Solar Power Day And Night!

NPR’s Alan Yu wrote an interesting article about Abengoa Solar. On Wednesday, Abengoa cranked up the world’s largest solar energy plant of its kind. What is newsworthy is not only its size — it powers 70,000 homes in Arizona — but the technology that enables it to store energy during the day and then generate […]

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continued education

Continued Education For Builders?

Recently, a friend mentioned he had to finish up some continued education credits to maintain his medical license. Lawyers are required to do the same, and so are many other professionals. Then I began to wonder: why is the building industry exempt? The construction landscape is constantly changing with new and updated laws, methods, and […]

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moneyfan

Irresponsible eHow Post Rewarded With Enviable Google Ranking

A few days ago, I was searching Google on the query ‘Second Story Deck’. I wrote two articles on deck building recently, and wanted to see the rankings. Lo and behold, guess what shows up on page 1 of the search results? Yep, an eHow post. (For the few of you not familiar with eHow, it […]

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drowning

California Contractors, Check Your Remodeling Contracts!

Yesterday I attended a presentation for construction professionals titled “Drowning in Paperwork, or Ten Ways To Stay Out Of Trouble With Your Lawyers.” It was made by attorney Eric Phillips with Wendel Rosen Black & Dean, and hosted by Truitt & White Lumber in Berkeley, California. Among the presentation’s main points was the fact that […]

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permitcard

You Need A Building Permit

In its simplest form, a building permit is a piece of paper that allows you to demolish, construct, alter, or repair a building. It is typically issued by a local government agency after drawings and other details have been submitted and approved. In case of simple repairs, sometimes a permit is issued ‘over-the-counter’, meaning the […]

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Who is this duct-taped iPhone user?

Why This Blog?

I started swinging a hammer in the early 80’s. My father was developing land in the hills of Oakland, CA, building beautiful homes with fantastic views of the San Francisco bay. As a former producer of art documentaries for Dutch television, he was more a visual artist than a businessman. For better or for worse, […]

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k_fire

Taking The Con Out Of Contracting: A Code Of Conduct For Builders?

Returning from work to his home in the Berkeley hills, my client slid some frozen food in the microwave. He put his dog on a leash, figuring he would take a stroll while his dinner cooked in the oven. When they returned about 40 minutes later, more had cooked than just dinner. Several firefighters were […]

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