How many of you regularly read The Construction Specifier magazine that each member receives every month? Most Architectural Product Representatives Im sure read articles on their companys products (and their competitors) when they appear. Most Contractors Im sure read articles that pertain to projects that they are planning or have currently under construction and most Architects/Engineers Im sure read articles that pertain to their latest buildings/systems they are designing. Hopefully those members dedicated to writing specifications read a majority of the articles.
Personally I have found the technical articles very beneficial in developing specifications, especially when the product is either new or there have been new improvements to existing products. Over the years though, I do make it a habit to read the short biographical sketch on the author of each piece before reading the article itself. Why? If the article is being written by a company representative of the product in the article I cautiously watch for certain biases that will crop up. It is only natural for an author to shed a good light on their product as opposed to another companys product or a competing product. I try to look only at the technical aspects of the article and then do the appropriate comparisons myself. I believe most long-term readers of The Construction Specifier do the same.
I want to point out parts of the magazine that you may have had a tendency to bypass or just briefly skim. First is the ÏLetters column for it is here that you will find supporting or rebuttal letters to previous articles and these letters can be very helpful to your understanding of a certain product, method or system that appeared in an earlier edition of the magazine. A second column if you will is ÏHorizons which deals with new issues or ones that are currently Ïin vogue. In this column I suggest you go back to the July 2009 issue and read the article entitled ÏBIM for Specifiers by Steve Freeman. I believe you will find it most interesting.
Another column that is very interesting is ÏInside CSI and here I strongly recommend the article entitled ÏHelp Wanted by Joy Davis that appeared in the May 2009 issue.
Last but certainly not least is the ÏFailures column that appears on the last page of most issues. This short article is usually a real eye-opener and is especially useful to Contractors and Architects.
Enjoy the lovely Fall weather and good reading to you all.
Jay Norton, CSI
CSI Phoenix Chapter President