six fledgeling companies to watch.

by ali hoffman

We've all been there: The moment when a sudden lightbulb clicks, lightening strike, fireworks explode, and out comes an idea more brilliant than anyone else's - or so you think. But what next? How do you turn this stroke of genius into something real? Enter Kickstarter, the online platform designed to fund whatever film, iPhone app, charity organization, or French Toast food truck you dream of creating. Kickstarter is based on the concept of "crowdfunding," meaning the public chooses if and how much they'd like to pledge to help a project reach a financial goal. If the number of funds are not met by the time the campaign reaches its deadline, no one is charged, and the project is dubbed "unsuccessful." In the spirit of today's DIY revolution, we've rounded up Kickstarter projects that haven't yet reached their funding goal. Take a look at them below and let us know if they seem like worthy causes to encourage, no strings attached - or if you'd only invest in them if it meant you got a stake in the company...

See also: The Great Etsy Roundup.

Yes and Yes Designs: Jewelry made from laser-cut, vintage book covers and graphics.

Kordal: a supercute knitwear company.

Disposable Stories, for camera drop-offs around the world.

Day Maker, an iPhone alarm clock inspired by a toaster.

Qwik Keys, a touch guide for the iPhone keyboard

Love Letters to the End, a crowd-sourced art project and website about the end of the world (maybe)