Max Perilstein's blog

We can debate the merits of programs like LEED until we’re all blue in the face. The bottom line, though, is the performance and sustainability of the building when all is said and done. And while the various green rating systems are pivoting and making efforts to evolve their programs into ensuring long-range success, there’s one process that guarantees it: the Net Zero building.

Slowly but surely Net Zero is taking off. It's important in the glass industry, because the process rewards the glass/glazing performance and basically will force those pesky HVAC guys to size their efforts correctly. Too many times we get blamed (unfairly I must add) for the oversizing of HVAC units because there’s no trust in fenestration. With Net Zero, we’re all working together and the playing field does level. There’s a ton to this process, and it's still pretty raw, but I do believe it will be in the mainstream sooner than many think.

Elsewhere…

  • Speaking of sustainability, one of the great champions of the effort in our industry is Mark Silverberg of Technoform. Last week he was named to the AAMA Sustainability Steering Committee. Can’t get a better man than that to be a force in the effort!
  • The energy of the trade show/industry conference is the hottest in years. So far 2014 is showing a major uptick in attendance and excitement. A couple more regional shows are coming up to be aware of. The 27th Annual Mid Atlantic Glass Expo hits April 30th in Greenbelt, Md.  Then in Canada, the Canadian Glass Association's Glass Connections conference in Nova Scotia (would love to go, birthplace of the great Sidney Crosby) comes through on June 4-5. Both events will provide excellent learning and networking potential. And don’t forget about the granddaddy of them all, the biggest show in all of North America: GlassBuild America, in September in Vegas. That floor is filling up nicely, and it will be an incredible event not to be missed.
  • After a hiatus in doing interviews on the blog, we welcome that segment back. One area of the business that I am always fascinated by is switchable glass, specifically  liquid crystal and suspended particle products. These products are growing in usage thanks to the boom on the decorative glass side. It’s surely moving up from the “niche” category. So it was great to catch up with Anthony Branscum, director of architectural sales at Innovative Glass Corp. in New York, and talk with him about the growth of the product, some of misconceptions out there and more.

MP: What do you think is driving this positive direction and usage?

Anthony Branscum: I think it’s mainly because the products have come a long way and are now beyond the “Proof of Concept” stage. Architects around the country, and the world for that matter, are realizing the practical benefits of using these products in their designs. Perhaps more importantly, they have gained confidence that the technology will last when it gets out there. They have become educated consumers. 

MP: Speaking specifically on the liquid crystal product, there’s been talk recently in different circles about uneven performance and products failing. Do you think such talk is legitimate or is it being overblown?
 

AB: I have heard and read some of the same things you are alluding to. There’s a lot of posturing going on within the industry right now. Some suppliers of switchable glass are spending a lot of time bashing their competitors instead of talking about their own virtues. They believe it makes their product appear as if it’s “the best”, but what they’re really doing is hurting the industry at large. They’re creating a perception out there that the product won’t last.  It is simply not true.  When fabricated properly, one can expect many years of service from liquid crystal technology. Of course, there are companies that don’t produce a great product, but they are not the majority, and time will eventually run out on them.

MP: What should buyers do or look for to make sure they are dealing with the right people?

AB: They should make sure whoever they are dealing with can provide them a functioning sample. They should ask for a copy of the warranty. They should definitely ask for references and perhaps ask to see a job local to them where the glass has successfully been installed. If the vendor can’t satisfy these requests in a timely fashion, they should think twice about going too far with them. 

MP: You and your company have been in the switchable space for more than a decade. What are some of the biggest changes you have seen with the product offerings?

AB: The biggest change has been the advancement in the clarity of the LC films when they are in their clear state. The industry has come a long way in achieving better clarity. The second notable advancement would be the film widths. The product is available in wider widths than ever before. This helps satisfy most of the common architectural sizes we come across.

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications.

E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com. The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Events are crucial for networking and education, and if you are in the business, you need to make sure you are keeping up. We are about to enter the late spring show/conference season and there are three that I have marked on my calendar for importance and impact.

Coming up on April 29th is the 28th Annual Mid-Atlantic Glass Expo in Maryland. This event is always packed with many regional glass and glazing companies, and rarely disappoints. Then two days later is an event that I simply cannot wait to experience. I am getting to attend the iconic Garibaldi Glass Day on May 1st. Being a glass geek, I love to see and learn new things. What Garibaldi Glass does every year is simply brilliant, educating the industry and bringing so many stakeholders under one roof. Being there in person has me excited beyond belief. The final event on the schedule is the annual AIA Expo, this year in Atlanta. While I pick on our industry's over-the-top obsession for architects and their approval (we are like that needy child, desperate to catch the attention of the distracted parent when it comes to our need for love from architects), there is value to this show, because of the networking and new products usually on display.

In the end, making shows or conferences a part of your yearly marketing budget is a must. That budget absolutely must include GlassBuild America, because if you are not attending/participating in that show you are truly doing yourself and your business a disservice. Obviously I’ll have a lot more to say on that event as we get closer, but it does boggle my mind when people skip it and then wonder why their competitors are gaining or passing them.

Elsewhere…

  • Heads up with your e-mail folks. A very nasty and tricky virus is out there. Basically you will get an e-mail from a recognizable friend of yours. It will start off as “Hi, how are you and then ask, “have you seen this” and leave a link. And that’s it. That link is a virus to add to your computer. And this virus is so tricky that you truly think it’s from a friend. In addition, another version has a link telling you to review “an invoice” and that too is bad. Needless to say, you have to be on guard with every e-mail nowadays. If it looks wrong or different, it probably is…
  • Tremendous issue of Glass Magazine is out now, and once again the great team led by Katy Devlin knocked it out of the park. Like each month, it's time to give props to the best ad of the issue and this one was a no brainer. The new ad from GGI was spectacular. Just stopped me in my tracks. That is what you want from a magazine ad for sure. Congrats to all involved on that one.
  • Also congratulations to Rick Hamlin of Cupples on his new post as president. Rick is a fantastic person and a true gentleman. Rick for the last few years has moderated the Glazing Executive Forum’s popular “State of the Industry” panel with great care and style. So happy that he’s continuing to be recognized for his talents.
  • Last this week: book review. I just finished “Marissa Mayer and the Fight to Save Yahoo!” by Nicolas Carlson. It was solid--not quite as good as the last few books I have read--but if you want to get a feel for the way billion dollar companies make decisions, most of them bad, then you’ll want to read this. There’s also great inside insight on the configuration of Boards and volatile shareholders that's pretty enlightening. 

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Since my last post, two major energy efficiency efforts received big boosts. And despite our current comfort with lower energy prices, energy efficiency is crucial to our society and our industry. First, the Shaheen-Portman Energy Savings Bill was re-introduced and the odds of it being pushed forward are positive. If a bi-partisan bill like this can’t make it, then there’s no hope. Meanwhile, the Senate passed the Better Buildings Act of 2015, which will push commercial buildings to be even more energy efficient. More details can be found here, but suffice it to say, we have the products to get this done. And these are examples of why I have been so bullish on the dynamic space. That product line surely should be in the discussion with regards to these pieces of legislation.

Elsewhere…

  • Your monthly update on the Architectural Billings Index: the latest results had the index in the positive but the new project score did dip. Overall attitudes are still very positive when it comes to building and the economy. From my own view, I am seeing more cranes and shells of buildings in process than I have seen in years.
  • Folks, don’t forget to get your nominations in for the premier award program in our industry—The Glass Magazine Awards. Deadline for nominations is this week—April 10.
  • Birthday wishes to two cool folks in our industry: Lewis McCallister of Coral Industries and Jan Rogan of PPG.
  • A heads up to anyone who’s into SEO and websites: Google is making some big changes to their algorithms, specifically location coding. Back in the day, you could list your company and connect with every city you could think of, then just have it link back to your main site. In this new update, Google is devaluing websites that do that, potentially moving them down the rankings quite a bit. If you need more info, drop me a note.
  • The final agenda for Glass Performance Days is out, and those of you going to Finland for it will surely experience a serious overload of glass and glazing education. A few pieces to check out include the awesome Jon Kimberlain of Dow Corning going deep on hyperelastic materials, tech legend Chris Barry on spandrel defects (Chris will make serious news I believe with his findings), and the extremely talented Jim Gulnick of McGrory Glass with a solar power case study.
  • And speaking of Mr. Kimberlain, hopefully by that June trip he'll be over the Kentucky loss in the Final Four. The great 1976 Indiana team still holds the mantle of being the last college team to go unbeaten all year.
  • Last this week, one big item I have missed is the growth of Health Product Declarations in our industry. Slowly but surely there’s been a significant demand for these and many in our industry have jumped on board and are able to supply them. In addition having the document helps in the whole LEED v4 effort as well. I can honestly say I don’t know the process very well at this point, but I’ve decided to dig in and figure it out, especially with HPD 2.0 now in process. In any case it looks like this is a need that is here to stay for sure, so be aware.

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

There was a mix of economic-related news that populated my Twitter feed last week. First the good news, where on a link from Conners Sales (@ConnersSales) any initial fears about the awful housing starts number from last month were calmed. Basically the analyst called it “winter” and said to wait another month. That’s good enough for me. Then the bad news came up via Ted Bleecker (@TedBleecker) with a story on the scary debt situation in China. Surely one to continue to monitor especially since it will have a massive effect on the world economy. Both items will be big drivers and warrant following along.

Elsewhere…

  • Quick family note: I'm absolutely thrilled about my nephew Josh joining the fine folks at Pleotint. As any reader of this blog knows, I am a huge proponent of dynamic glazing and its usage and potential. Great to see Josh signing on to that world, and I'm very excited to see what great things they do together.
  • Last week I posed two questions at the end of my blog: one on ultra thin glass and one on the upcoming Apple Watch. I really was blown away by some of the insights I received, and learned a lot as well. The great Chuck Knickerbocker of TGP educated me on a few things including ETFE (Ethylene tetrafluoroethylene), which is being used in glazing areas on some really intense projects. Overall on the thin glass question, the issue of finding the sweet spot for usage was the theme. As for the watch, universally negative responses toward its success. Apple has not failed with a product launch in a very long time, so we’ll see if their winning streak is up or we’re all missing the boat here. Thanks again to all who responded!
  • Congrats and good luck to Margaret Brune who recently joined the tremendous team at Saand as a manufacturer's rep in the Michigan market. Once again a good match of company and salesperson. I’m glad I’m not involved in sales anymore, because back in the day I had to compete with Margaret and she crushed me on a daily basis…
  • Over in England there’s a very strong daily blog called Double Glazing Blogger, and the author had a post last week that was very interesting. The use of quadruple glazing in China, combined with a video of a 57-story building in China going up in just 19 days using the quad glazing system. Just crazy how things get done over there… I wonder, will the quadruple glazing run come this way? Given that triple glazing has not gained as much market share in North America as the experts predicted, I’d guess this one going mainstream is still far off.
  • And while on the subject of China (my gosh, three items related to China this week and none featuring me ranting…odd): a good look here at two all-glass skyscrapers designed by SOM. The key? Huge IGUs but oriented a little differently than we are all used to.
  • Programming note, no post coming from me next week, unless of course big news happens, which right now seems doubtful as it's pretty quiet out there. Next post coming first full week of April.

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

After spending several days out of the office, I’m scrambling to keep up. So for this week’s blog, no lead story, just a bunch of quick hits…

--The positive economic trends in our industry are still moving along, but then again so are the continued tightening of supply and lack of consistent transportation. Last week I spoke to several industry insiders who told me they are rolling with things the best they can, but it's getting tougher every day. The key? Planning and communication. The more you do of both, the better off you will be.

--You never know what and whom you will see in Las Vegas. And while I have been there at least 40 times (in my best estimation), I have never run into anyone as epic as Steve Cohen of PPG did last week: the “baddest man on the planet,” former heavyweight champion of the world Mike Tyson. Nice! I wonder if Iron Mike will now be calling on architects with Steve; could make a convincing case to get products in the spec! Plus, props to Steve for taking a selfie with him. Way to go, my friend.

--The Glass Magazine Awards are back with the 2015 edition. Nominations are being accepted now for the products and projects portion of the annual awards program. For more info, including the specific categories, please click here!

--Caught a very interesting documentary this past week: Pink Ribbons Inc. The focus was the massive “pinkwashing” surrounding fundraising for breast cancer awareness and more importantly the lack of progress in identifying what causes breast cancer and finding better treatments or a cure. Really intriguing to watch as I have never been a fan of certain organizations jumping on board to help their own image (the NFL every October is a big one). It's frustrating to see billions of dollars raised, yet no major advancements in place. Worth the watch if you are interested.

--Now that BEC is in the books, next up are a couple of excellent regional shows, including the always-popular Mid-Atlantic Glass Expo April 29th, and then AIA May 14-16 in Atlanta. Before you know it, GlassBuild America will be here, and from all indications this year’s event will be very strong. I’m excited to see how things progress there.

--Last this week, two questions I am curious to get your opinions on: one pop culture/social and one industry.

  1. Do you think the Apple Watch will make it? I am torn. I love Apple products but have not worn or needed a watch in years. I can’t see the need when my iPhone does everything. But I’m also old and staid. Curious for other insights.
  2. At BEC, guest speaker James O’Callaghan made mention of the use of ultra thin glass. There are a few manufacturers who make it (AGC had their Dragontrail on display at GlassBuild last year), but finding a home for use is still a question. So do you think that this product will find its way into prominent places in the exterior glass world?

As always feel free to e-mail me, as I don’t monitor the comment section very closely.

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

This year for the first time in a while, the Glass Association of North America's BEC Conference was combined with GANA’s Annual Conference, which used to be known as “Glassweek.” And when you get a couple hundred companies in a small space together, along with some of the great technical minds in our industry, news is made and networking happens.

 

News:

  • One of our industry's most precious resources is Dr. Tom Culp. He gave updates on the upcoming ASHRAE 90.1. The big item so far is that the new version includes no changes to the window area. As you can remember a few years ago, there was a major push to reduce the window-to-wall ratio. Thankfully as of now, and thanks to amazing efforts by Dr. Culp and others, that is not on the table. However, many other items are in process including changes to the climate zone map and reduction in U-factors. Nothing that is brutal though, at least in my opinion. 

Networking:

Overall attitude and tenor of people attending was very positive. There’s a lot of industry confidence right now that is awesome to see. As for seeing actual people...

  • Great to see old pal Cliff Monroe of Oldcastle BE. He’s in tiptop condition and looks like he could run a marathon tomorrow. Of course no GANA meeting is the same without Eastman’s Julie Schimmelpenningh; catching up for a few minutes was wonderful. And a cool surprise to see my former co-worker Jon Johnson, now calling View home. He’ll do great there.
  • After years of coming to events like this I thought I met everyone I could from Viracon, but nope. I finally got to meet Bob Carlson in person, which was great. Plus, visiting with Garret Henson, Seth Madole, and of course the Hollywood model Cameron Scripture, is a treat.
  • I have heard about and admired Tim Kelley of Tri Star Glass for years, so meeting him for the first time was excellent and seeing Greg Oehlers (also Tri Star) is never dull. Spent time with Steve Cohen of PPG who is settling in nicely to his new digs there.
  • One of the classiest men in our industry, Dave Helterbran, was here and all I can say is he fights the good fight better than I ever could. Keep getting better, Dave! His daughter and son-in-law (Lindsay and Dustin Price) are launching a new business with Dave and I know it will be a tremendous success.
  • Speaking of success, I think everything that guys like Marc Deschamps (Walker), Mark Silverberg (Technoform), and James Wright (Glass Coatings & Concepts) touch turns to gold. Just picking their brains and having a dialogue with them makes you smarter, too.
  • Quickly visited with Bob Cummings (Hartung) and Kirk Johnson (Glasswerks) which was great, since I probably only get to see or talk to those guys once a year.
  • And I will say as a marketing guy I was really impressed/jealous of the awesome video that the folks from Vitrum showed. Incredible piece and it was nice to get to chat with Thomas Martini, Bruce Robinson and Tara Brummet about that and all the good things they have going on.
  • Also from a marketing and PR standpoint, getting to share a room with the insanely talented Heather West and Rich Porayko was as good as it gets. Those two produce some of the industry's best materials on a daily basis and it’s an honor to get to spend any time with them.

I know I probably missed some folks…sorry! All I can say is it's always an awesome time to network with the industry's best, and again, thank you for sharing time and conversation with me.

Read this blog and others on Max's blogspot page...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

We’re entering the final month of first quarter 2015 and there’s now an extra storyline to deal with: The renewed grip of winter hitting in more areas than normal could wreak havoc on bottom line performance in this quarter, which would be similar to what happened this time 2014. Obviously a majority of the industry bounced back nicely, but no one ever wants to start from behind. Plus, winter delays will make the glass capacity issues even more perilous; basically jobs that should be installed right now are behind and on hold, and eventually they will go as well as the jobs that were scheduled to go during that time. And what will come will be an extra dose of mayhem, if glass supply stays tight. So once again, the need for planning and proactivity is key. Bottom line for me: I hope March quickly moves from its “entering as a lion" phase and moves right to the “lamb” portion. The sooner the better…

Elsewhere…

  • Just a programming note, next week I’ll post this blog from Las Vegas, site of the GANA Annual Conference and BEC. I’ll have some recaps of the events including some insights from the annual Energy Day program that incredible people like Mark Silverberg of Technoform put on as well as code updates from Dr. Tom Culp and more. Plus the networking notes and who knows what rumors or scuttlebutt can come out…
  • If you did not catch the blog from Jeff Razwick of TGP, please check it out. As always, it’s well done and thought provoking. And it’s also a very effective argument about some of the great things our industry does.
  • A congrats to Linda Vos-Graham on her recent honor of being named a finalist for the “Top Women Owned Business Awards.” She is seriously deserving of this recognition. Linda is a tremendous asset to our industry and the few times I have seen her in a public dialogue (NGA’s GEF a few years ago, especially) she was simply amazing.
  • So a big question: a design of a new Google headquarters is out and it looks absolutely wild. With that, what are the chances that a North American manufacturer and fabricator get this work? Or will it come from overseas?
  • Good part of it finally being March? March Madness and the College Basketball brackets. Not sure anyone can beat Kentucky….
  • Last this week, the magazine Fast Company did a piece on the most innovative companies in 2015. (Actually makes me think we should do a list like that in our world; I think I will do some day soon.) The top 5 were…

#5 Instagram

#4 Google

#3 Alibaba

#2 Apple

and #1 was… Warby Parker!

Only one problem… I have never heard of them. No clue who they are or what they innovate (eye glasses from what I found). So I’m blown away that the most innovative company according to these guys is someone that surely is not near the mainstream. And if they were a computer- or software-related company I could believe it, but glasses? Wow.

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

This week marks the 35th anniversary of one of the most amazing moments in American sports history—The Miracle on Ice. It’s something that I still get the chills thinking about. The late, great Herb Brooks assembled a true “team” of players—guys that were there, as he noted, to play for the name on the front of the jersey and not the back. They faced adversity throughout their training and then in the Olympics fell behind game after game, but worked through it and came through in the end.

Even though I knew the result before seeing the US-USSR game (it was on tape delay and CBS Evening News told me who won before it was aired), it will probably be my most revered sports memory. And it doesn’t only pertain to sports; the business angle is in there, too. Several years ago we as an industry had the honor of having team USA Captain Mike Eruzione speak at the BEC Conference, and he was amazing. He had one line that I always refer to:

“You can’t measure heart, pride or commitment…. Intangibles separate good business from great business. If you believe in something, and you’re willing to work hard for it, you can accomplish it.”

Right on...

Elsewhere…

  • By the way, I know I have a very prominent Canadian audience (who I love as anyone who reads this knows) and the 1980 Olympics probably annoys them some, as their boys were beating the Russians 3-1 halfway through their game just a few days before the US played them. Then the Russians scored three goals in three minutes and that dream was dead. But if Canada somehow would’ve held on, history would be so different.
  • The “Ad of the Month” in Glass Magazine goes to Salem Distributing. What a smart, clean and effective ad. Gets your attention and keeps it. Congrats to the team at Salem on a job well done. And by the way, this issue “Growing Pains” is absolutely fantastic. A ton of interesting stories and good research material as well.
  • The Architectural Billings Index came out for January and it was down, barely below the success line, (49.9) but I don’t believe it's time for any concern. The overall numbers still had some very positive parts to them.
  • Ran across an interesting piece this week on the challenges that a construction company will face in 2015. The top two were finding enough qualified skilled workers and landing enough work to be profitable. Quite frankly these are challenges that I am sure our world has as well. I am surprised that things like managing cash flow was not higher.
  • Last this week, just some quick reminders of a couple big industry events on the horizon. GANA Annual Conference and BEC are coming in early March, and the GPAD event is coming mid-March.  I’ll be at the GANA events and I am looking forward to seeing folks that I have not seen in a while—like the movie star Cameron Scripture of Viracon, the prolific runner Joe Erb of Quanex, and old friend Marty Richardson of Metropolitan Glass. And of course, many others. Can’t wait.

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

So I have been banging on the “glass capacity” issue for a while now and this week I chatted with several people who are dealing with this growing problem. First, there are still folks unaware that glass, especially ¼-inch clear, is getting harder and harder to get. That is on everyone in the supply chain—suppliers, fabricators, glaziers and the media. Communicating about what is happening in the industry is a must. And while this issue has not affected the entire industry yet, the way it is heading I am pretty sure it will. So as I have said before, be proactive.

On that note, I did hear from a few people who are struggling with the best ways to be proactive. Some fabricators are developing programs to reserve glass but some of those programs carry risk (penalties if you don’t take the glass when scheduled is one), and with the volatile schedules of the general contractor, the glaziers are wary about commitments. The fear is, by struggling to get glass, we as an industry could be setting ourselves up for losing that part of the building to other materials. Now while I don’t see “glassless” buildings, designers could choose to go with less glass area, which is scary and ironic since we fought so hard to deflect efforts to limit glass usage in the codes. So again, communication through the chain is key as this is a legitimate issue and one that is not going to go away quickly. Make sure everyone knows what the obstacles are, be truthful with lead-times, push for guaranteed sizes, etc.

In the end, all of these things, as well as other proactive measures, will help and also make everyone more efficient. And if you have not been touched with this tightening of materials, congrats, but be prepared as I have a good feeling you will.

Elsewhere…

  • I know I say it over and over, but sometimes when something is so good, it deserves constant repeating. Katy Devlin’s blogs on Glass Magazine are not to be missed. Last week’s recap of a facades conference was incredible. So good that I think I may need to take a few months off to recharge because my stuff is not even in the same stratosphere.
  • In my last post, I noted one of the buildings that was chosen as “the coolest” in 2014 and wondered who fabricated the glass. Well sure enough it did not take long for the always-excellent Bill Coady of Guardian to pipe up with the info. The glass used was Guardian SunGuard Neutral 40 on No. 2 and Neutral 78/65 on No. 5. The glass was fabricated by Garibaldi Glass. Congrats to all and thank you Mr. Coady for reading the blog and replying!
  • Great news this week about a good friend of mine, Steve Cohen. PPG announced that Steve has joined as National Architectural Manager-Northeast. Quite a coup for PPG since I believe Steve is one of the most talented guys in our industry. And while I am biased since I like Steve personally, I can tell you from a professional side in dealing with him, the guy is fantastic. Great move for both sides here.
  • Last this week, two more sets of lists since I love those things…

The top 25 Architectural “fails” and the top 5 commercial construction trends. The “fail” piece is just mindless fun, but the trends piece is pretty interesting and does relate to our world.

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

In one of my predictions for 2015, I noted that the “Bird Safe” glass revolution would grow. One key area of growth is to get a stronger voice in the code process and that seemingly is happening. I think I underestimated the bird safe lobby and their desire to get safe glass specified and installed—probably because this has been an issue on the radar for several years. I remember being at a meeting where the always-on-top-of-things, Julie Schimmelpenningh (then of Solutia, now of Eastman) brought it up as an issue to be aware of and approach. And basically companies did; but the drumbeat for it to take off never took place. But now with easily available bird-safe glass products, and a possible push on the code side, we’re about to see the revolution grow.

Elsewhere…

  • Those of you who know me, know I have not been a fan of the USGBC green rating system LEED for a while now. Well it looks like I am getting more company on that front. First, a Turner Construction survey shows that interest in alternative green rating systems is up 250 percent in the last two years. And then we have Alabama, Georgia, Maine, and Mississippi that have now essentially “banned” the use of LEED for state-funded projects due to one of the credit items in the old 2009 criteria. Now I think green and sustainable building is a must (I prefer Net Zero), and having a solid, reliable and logical green rating system is crucial. So I am surely not against the concept, but against at least the set up of the biggest guy on the block. What will be interesting now is to see if any of these alternative systems can truly step up and be a significant competitor to LEED.
  • Not sure where these stack up energy or “green” wise, but a very neat piece on the “5 coolest buildings” completed in 2014. None in the United States, but one is in British Columbia and I am curious which of the awesome glass fabricators in the Pacific Northwest supplied the glass for it…
  • I’m still in shock over the Super Bowl… That ending. Wow. Anyway, the commercials are the best part for me, so a quick rundown here. Obviously the one that made the most news was the bizarre Nationwide “kid” commercial. If there was ever a PR and marketing combined fail, it was that one. Killing off a kid in front of 114 million viewers in efforts to sell insurance is simply wrong. To defend it by saying you were trying to “educate” is a joke as well. Best commercials for me: the Budweiser dog returning home (we have four dogs; I’d be a mess if one left); and the comical Bryant Gumbel/Katie Couric BMW flashback to 1994. I laughed even more as that was the year I got my AOL e-mail address that I still have and use today. Last, the Doritos middle seat commercial was great; all of us have been in that position in one form or another. Great twist.
  • Last this week, I have noted here many times that following the Glass Magazine Twitter feed can be just as good as being there. And this past week that was true again during a Facades+ Conference in Los Angeles. The stream of tweets were quick and insightful. And once again, while I wish I could have attended, I was able to get some of the flavor needed thanks to the feed. That is where social media really pays off—the ability to real-time an interesting event. Or being able to review the feed at the end of the day and see it all at once. Nice work!

Read on for links and video of the week...

The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

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