glassblog

Monday, September 10, 2007

—By Katy Devlin, e-Newsletter editor, e-glass weekly

I went through a terrifying, horrifying (and mortifying) near-death experience yesterday. Let me set the scene.

I was at GlassBuild America one day before opening. Debris littered the aisles as forklifts and cranes sped past. Hundreds of workers scattered throughout the huge trade show floor worked in organized chaos, sawing, drilling, lifting and setting.

I found safety in our 20-by-20 foot magazine booth (3523—come visit!), until I noticed Ashley Charest and Brian Pitman from GANA and got up to greet them. We met in the middle of the aisle and barely completed our hellos when we heard beeps and shouts as a forklift sped toward us. Fear and panic filled my eyes, as the metal tines took aim at my shins. I watched the yellow cart barrel our way, going at least 10, maybe 15, miles per hour.

My three years in the industry flashed before my eyes, and I thought it was all over … that is, until Ashley saved my life and my glass career with some wise words: “Let’s move out of the way.”

As we walked to the edge of the aisle, I tripped over a roll of carpeting and slipped on a sheet of plastic. Catching my balance and playing it cool, we finished our conversation and said our goodbyes.

I have learned several things from this experience:

  • I am a colossal exaggerator

  • I am a complete klutz

  • It’s amazing how this trade show came together in such a short time. Major kudos to everyone involved.

Check out this video to see the process.


http://www.youtube.com/get_player
Sunday, September 9, 2007
—By Sahely Mukerji, Managing editor, Glass Magazine/AutoGlass

Good day from sunny Hotlanta. GlassBuild America brings me to this sultry downtown, with temperatures hovering around 90 degrees Fahrenheit; the asphalt on the streets adding to the sizzle with tire friction and car emissions.

City dwellers, however, seem conscious enough to not add their bit to the global warming. Either that or they just like the feel of zipping around town like an 8-year-old on his scooter with the wind in his hair.

It’s the Segway PTs I’m talking about. While sitting outside and sipping a nice cool glass of water at Pacific Rim on Peachtree Center Avenue last night, I noticed a man on this little two-wheeled self-balancing device gliding past. Have you noticed these personal transporters? I don't see them up in Northern Virginia where I live, but these Segways, “the next generation in personal mobility,” are at every street corner in the Big Peach.

On my ride back to the hotel from the Georgia Convention Center today, the cabbie, a 10-year Atlanta resident originally from Haiti, confirmed that with the hike in gas prices, the Segway has become quite popular in the city.

Invented by Dean Kamen and unveiled in December 2001, these transporters are produced by Segway Inc. of New Hampshire, according to Wikipedia. “The name "Segway" is a homophone of "segue" (a smooth transition, literally Italian for "follows"). PT is an initialism for personal transporter, while the old acronym HT was an initialism for human transporter.”

Kamen claims that 500 million car trips per day in the U.S. are less than 5 miles and single-passenger, and if only a percentage of those used a tiny electric "car" instead, the positive effects could be considerable, Wikipedia says.

Atlanta offers city Segway tours: go to http://www.citysegwaytours.com/ or write Atlanta@CitySegwatTours.com.

I can totally see myself ditching my Honda Civic for one of those slickers, but am not quite sure about those goofy helmets ...


Sunday, September 9, 2007
In September 2007, the GlassBuild America trade show took place at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta. One thousand years later, with all of Atlanta submerged underwater, the show still goes on ... but with a container glass focus.



Welcome to GlassBuild America

—By Matt Slovick
, Glass Magazine Editor-in-Chief

The video clip is from the “Futurama” episode “The Deep South,” which aired in April 2000. Atlanta had moved offshore and became an island in an effort to boost tourism and become a bigger Delta hub. The city overdeveloped and its excess weight caused it to sink.

Those that stayed with the city evolved into merpeople, boosted by the large amounts of caffeine from the Coca-Cola bottling plant. Famous people who got off the island were Ted Turner, Hank Aaron, Jeff Foxworthy, the guy who invented Coca-Cola and Jane Fonda. “Futurama” debuted in 1999 with the premise of a New York pizza delivery boy who is cryonically frozen on Jan. 1, 2000, and revived 1,000 years later.

Thanks to “Futurama” and YouTube, we hope this clip helps set the tone for our glassblog, which comes to you from GlassBuild America in Atlanta. Glassblog debuted during AIA in San Antonio and then continued from GPD in Finland. Glassblog from GlassBuild will be updated by editors who are in search of interesting, fun and entertaining subjects while on the Expo floor, at a GBA event or outside the confines of the Georgia World Congress Center.

Glassblog also likes to present trivia from its various locations. Those visiting GlassBuild will undoubtedly see or hear about The World of Coca-Cola. Why is it here and mentioned in the "Futurama" episdoe? Coca-Cola was invented in May 1886 in Atlanta by pharmacist John S. Pemberton. The name "Coca-Cola" was suggested by Pemberton's bookkeeper, Frank Robinson. He penned the name Coca-Cola in the flowing script that is famous today. Coca-Cola was first sold at a soda fountain in Jacob's Pharmacy in Atlanta by Willis Venable.
Friday, September 7, 2007
In September 2007, the GlassBuild America trade show took place at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta. One thousand years later, with all of Atlanta submerged underwater, the show still goes on ... but with a container glass focus.
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vmeoPZf1cFo]

Welcome to GlassBuild America

— By Matt Slovick, Glass Magazine Editor-in-Chief

The clip is from the “Futurama” episode “The Deep South,” which aired in April 2000. Atlanta had moved offshore and became an island in an effort to boost tourism and become a bigger Delta hub. The city overdeveloped and its excess weight caused it to sink.

Those that stayed with the city evolved into merpeople, boosted by the large amounts of caffeine from the Coca-Cola bottling plant. Famous people who got off the island were Ted Turner, Hank Aaron, Jeff Foxworthy, the guy who invented Coca-Cola and Jane Fonda. “Futurama” debuted in 1999 with the premise of a New York pizza delivery boy who is cryonically frozen on Jan. 1, 2000, and revived 1,000 years later.

Thanks to “Futurama” and YouTube, we hope this clip helps sent the tone for our glassblog, which will be coming to you from GlassBuild America in Atlanta. Glassblog debuted during AIA in San Antonio and then continued from GPD in Finland. Glassblog from GlassBuild will be updated daily by editors who are in search of interesting, fun and entertaining subjects while on the Expo floor, attending a GBA event or outside the confines of the Georgia World Congress Center.

Glassblog also likes to present trivia from its various locations. Those visiting GlassBuild will undoubtedly see or hear about The World of Coca-Cola. Why is it here? Coca-Cola was invented in May 1886 in Atlanta by pharmacist John S. Pemberton. The name "Coca-Cola" was suggested by Pemberton's bookkeeper, Frank Robinson. He penned the name Coca-Cola in the flowing script that is famous today. Coca-Cola was first sold at a soda fountain in Jacob's Pharmacy in Atlanta by Willis Venable.
Thursday, June 21, 2007
—By Matt Slovick, Glass Magazine editor-in-chief

This was my first, but I believe the legend continues.

Attendees were instructed to pick up their costumes before they left Tampere Hall. Brown Onduso, marketing coordinator for GPD, wore his most of the final day, letting us know we must be “dressed like him” to attend the party.

It was a Royal Party, and women, the princesses, wore capes and crowns (cardboard). Men were knights and also wore crowns. The garb came in different colors. I chose black.

Transportation to the party was by bus (10 minutes) or boat (40 minutes). I selected the marine route along with many others who filled two boats.

Jorma Vitkala, GDP chairman, made sure we weren’t disappointed upon arrival.

The medieval theme continued as Jorma, dressed in an old-time military outfit, greeted us at the dock. Villagers, including hags (some with beards and hunchbacks), roamed the grounds of the mansion while minstrels played in various spots.

The food was plentiful, and the drinks flowed freely.

About midnight, when I finally experience darkness in Finland, the group I was with decided to head back to the hotel. I had spoken to a few people who had early-morning flights and planned to stay up all night. When we got off the bus, we decided to have “one more” drink at the hotel bar.

The conversations continued and at some point, it was really time to get to bed. I still had a few blocks to go to get to my hotel. As I was walking, it seemed as though it wasn’t that dark anymore. And then I realized I was experiencing my first sunrise in Finland.

One more day
After four hours of sleep, I packed and headed to the airport. I was on the plane, along with Denise Sheehan, vice president of industry events at the National Glass Association, when we were told to go back to the terminal. Our plane had technical problems.

Many Europeans were able to take a bus to Helsinki and make connections. After a two-hour wait in line, Denise and I weren’t as lucky.

Our trip home was to go from Tampere to Stockholm to Frankfurt and then Dulles. The woman with Scandinavian Airlines could not find us flights that worked.

We were booked for a 6:20 flight the next morning that would take us to Copenhagen and then on to Dulles. The airlines picked up the tap for our taxi, hotel room, dinner and breakfast. They also upgraded us to Economy Express, which was a first for me.

So, I also got one more evening of daylight.

Our flight home was generally uneventful, until we arrived at Dulles. Another technical problem, this time with walkway used to get passengers off the plane. We waited for about 30 minutes before unloading.

It was now after 4 p.m. And after a week in The Land of the Midnight Sun, I was back to familiar territory – crawling along in Beltway traffic. There’s no place like home.
Monday, June 18, 2007
—By Katy Devlin, e-Newsletter editor, e-glass weekly

The world has eight years to reduce emissions and curb climate change before it may be too late, according to Fiona Hall, the head of an energy commission for the European Parliament who spoke during the GPD opening session. That’s a very small and scary number that inspired me to make some changes.

I had every intention of starting my own conservation efforts immediately, including avoiding my gas-guzzling 4,000 mile flight home tomorrow. However, I just don’t have enough vacation days to do a leisurely backstroke to the states. And, my swimming isn’t quite what it could be—I wasn't once the national record holder for the 50 meter butterfly in India like one Glass Magazine editor … not to mention any names, so Sahely Mukerji gets embarrassed.

I’ll get really serious about conservation when I get home—starting by selling my car. Speaking of which, is anyone in the market for a blue Pontiac Vibe? Or, does anyone happen to have a good bike they’re looking to sell … perhaps with the friends, family or glass-industry reporter discount?

Aside from making my own energy plans, Hall’s speech also made me acutely aware of the efforts on the part of others, including many right here in Finland. The most obvious one is the plethora of bicyclists. I live in New York and was still surprised by the number of people pedaling their way, rather than driving. My dad would be disappointed, though, as most riders I saw were not wearing helmets.

Conservation goes far beyond bikes in Finland. Reducing energy use in buildings seems a big concern, as many places let the sunlight in and turn the lights off whenever they can. During my trip over last week, I noticed both the Helsinki and Tampere airports have large glass facades that allowed them to turn many of their electric lights. Daylighting was also used instead of lights in many areas of Tampere Hall, where the conference was held.

While most property owners seem to be catching on, I did notice one Tampere mall seems to be a bit behind the trend.
Sunday, June 17, 2007
—By Matt Slovick, Glass Magazine editor-in-chief

Unlike AIA in San Antonio, Texas, at which which larger charter buses carried three or four passangers to and from the hotels and conference center, the buses to the GPD dinner were standing-room-only.

They were double buses with that accordion look in the middle. The buses took us to a huge facility that reminded me of a airplane hangar. And for good reason, about 1,000 people had to be fed.

I sat with Spaniards to my left and Brazilians to my right. The Brazilians asked how well I spoke their native Portugese, and I told them ''as well as the average Fin.'' I thought the food was good. The Spaniards weren't crazy about the Gazpacho, a Spanish soup.

The evening included two magicians, a band and ended with a Vegas-style dance routine. The buses returned us close to midnight. And yes, it still was not dark.

Speaking of buses, GPD has a Web bus outside the tent that is equipped with about 10 computers with Internet access.
Sunday, June 17, 2007
—By Katy Devlin, e-Newsletter editor, e-glass weekly

For those of you who have never been able to attend GPD, Tampere, Finland, is in fact not the Oz-like glazed city pictured in the conference literature.

While the incredible faux city dreamed up by graphic designers did not greet me upon arrival, Tampere does offer some pretty impressive glass buildings. Here are some examples I’ve found in my wanderings—and I’m sure there are more. (Oh, and for those of you who have wondered about the unicyclist on the graphic—I have yet to see any on the streets—though one was pedaling around the conference hall on opening day.)

-The GPD organizers couldn’t have gotten closer to their designer’s image of a glass Oz as they did with the choice of Tampere Hall for the conference venue. With several glass-walled and roofed atriums, countless skylights, double façades, a channel glass wall and numerous examples of artfully used interior glazing, the concert hall is by far the glass Mecca of Tampere.












- Right down the street is the University of Tampere, where the GPD workshops were held on June 14. Pictured below are two of several remarkable uses of glass—the five story entry and stair well, with glass railings, and the three-story glass bridge that swoops out at least another 30 feet beyond the frame to create an interesting roof skylight.














- To the west—conveniently on my walk to the hotel—are two malls, both with glass roofs. The Tullintori Center features an arched glass roof that extends the length of the mall, and the KoskiKeskus complex features three sloped glazed rooftops over its main entrances.














- While this last image of the Orthodox Church doesn’t include a lot of glass, I thought you all might want a look at one of Tampere’s most famous sites. (Note, also that this was taken at about 8:30, with the sun still high above the horizon).
Saturday, June 16, 2007

—By Matt Slovick, editor-in-chief, Glass Magazine


This is my third day in Finland, and I've yet to see darkness.

After attending GPD sessions and writing in the press room last night, I made a stop at the welcome reception in the large tent outside of Tampere Hall and then headed to my hotel.

Cumulus Koskikatu is a 15-minute walk, and I realized it was nearing 11 at night—make that 11 p.m.—and it was still light. Sunset was 11:10, and the sun rose at 3:42 this morning. The sun will set at 11:12 this evening.

The non-session related events have experienced a few snafus. The welcome reception continued well past 10:30, when the Hall was closed. That means some attendees had to look for restroom alternatives. I had left my laptop in a locker outside the press room. I held up my key, and someone did allow me to pick up my belongings. And today, the luncheon ran out of food. However, the organizers quickly informed those of us who missed the meal that we could eat in a restaurant on the second floor of the Hall free of charge. Minor glitches in an otherwise smooth-operating event.

Even with the few issues, I've gotten a lot out of the conferences so far, including a complimentary messenger bag. The GPD bags are a glossy, shiny red and look like the bags used by pizza deliverers. They are kept closed by Velcro, and you keep hearing that distinctive sound as people open them up during the presentations. Today, when attendees were leaving the Hall to go to the tent, it looked like hundreds of pizza delivery people leaving at the same time.
Friday, June 15, 2007
—By Katy Devlin, e-Newsletter editor, e-glass weekly

I sat in a café this morning sipping my Tropicana orange juice and thinking about globalization. What else in the world would I be thinking about on a sunny morning in Tampere, Finland?

Out the window, I saw a McDonalds, next to the New York Café, across from the Coyote Bar & Grill and down the street from Gamblers’ Bar that hosts Texas Hold ‘Em games each week. I glanced up at the TV, only to find a news story, in Finnish, about the well deserved tragic fate of Paris Hilton. (I’ll save my blog about the tragic state of the news media for another time).

It’s not just the influence of America that I’m noticing here in Finland. Last night, Glass Magazine Editor Matt Slovick and I dined at Sevilla, a lovely Spanish restaurant. And the Tampere Boys Choir performed several Beatles numbers during the GPD opening session today, including one in Finnish.

This topic was ever present today during GPD, including during speeches from executives from global float glass manufacturers Guardian, Asahi Glass Co., and Nippon Sheet Glass. Russ Ebeid, CEO of Guardian, predicted during his presentation that several leading float manufacturers will exit the business in the near future, and that a Chinese float company will emerge from the current region players as a strong international competitor. More on this in our news coverage at http://www.glassmagazine.net/ and in the next e-glass weekly.

NGA President Phil James was right on when he recommended everyone on our staff read Thomas Freidman’s, The World is Flat. We’re entering a globalized economy—and world—whether we’re ready for it or not. And Paris Hilton is on a television set near you, anywhere in the world—whether you can stomach it or not.

In the meantime, I’m going to sign off so I can find some authentic Finnish food for dinner, but only after I stop by H&M; to do some shopping.
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