The Art and Science of Patterns

Patterns have played a key role in design, have surprising histories, and both their uses and meanings have evolved over time.

In this learning unit, we will look at some popular patterns and trace their histories and evolution. We’ll also explore how patterns fulfill a multitude of functions, from creating a certain mood to helping people navigate through buildings.

Finally, this learning unit will explore trends in patterns today, including nature-inspired patterns that lower stress and contribute to occupant well-being.

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Emerging Trends in Commercial Flooring

Most current trends in tile, vinyl and wood flooring are the result of emerging technical advances, offering designers and architects enormous flexibility to create unique looks in non-traditional applications. Tiles that simulate real wood, vinyl flooring with a natural stone appearance, and wood flooring that can be used in wet areas are just some of the latest advancements. In this course contractors, designers and architects will learn how to apply current trends in tile, vinyl and wood flooring to gain a competitive advantage.

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Water Management in Shower Installations

Tiled shower demand is growing by double digits. Showers are getting bigger, more luxurious, and more expensive. Five million new tiled showers are installed every year! Most shower problems are not detected until after at least a year and any warranties have expired.

In this course, specifiers and wet-area construction tradespeople will be able to effectively explain the benefits of using bonded waterproofing membranes in a fully bonded shower system for a better, longer-lasting product.

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Thin Large Format Porcelain Tile

Thin, large format porcelain panels provide all of the beneficial characteristics of porcelain tile but in a product that is less than ¼ inch thick and lighter in weight. Its technical capabilities allow it to be used in more interior and exterior applications, it is more environmentally friendly than thicker and heavier products, and it is appropriate for use in both new construction and renovation projects. This course will cover the characteristics of thin, large format porcelain tile, interior and exterior applications, specification and installation considerations, and green building contributions of the product.

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Tile is Green

As sustainability has become an important consideration to consumers and architects who are designing for better environmental stewardship, green building programs have emerged to certify which buildings meet specific sustainable design goals. The focus on tile in this presentation clarifies the many ways that this product can contribute to a green building certification in such programs as USGBC LEED®, NAHB Green Builidng Standard, and the ICC’s International Green construction code. The design professional will also learn about the ANSI (138.1) Green Squared standard for defining a green tile – a standard developed by the North American Tile Council with the input of designers, architects, green professionals, end users and manufacturers.

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Large Gauged Porcelain Panels

Large gauged porcelain panels/slabs are light, strong and durable, and can be used in projects where other materials would be too thick or heavy. Panels can help with sustainable design or “green” building requirements.\

This course will explore new options for large gauged porcelain panels available for architects and designers. It will highlight not only the manufacturing process and product characteristics, but also the application and installation requirements associated with the material, along with new industry standards.

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The Benefits of Outdoor Porcelain Pavers

Outdoor porcelain pavers produce an ideal solution for any outdoor space. Traditional outdoor porcelain tiles required installation on an adhesive or a mortar/cement base. With new, two centimeter porcelain tiles, the tiles can also be "dry installed" on a grass or sand/gravel base, or on support pedestals. Porcelain pavers combine beauty and high performance to provide an effective solution for endless outdoor applications. The durability, ease of install, and pleasing aesthetics make porcelain pavers an ideal solution. With their ability to withstand extreme thermal conditions, they are ideal for both commercial and residential spaces.

This course will provide an overview of outdoor porcelain pavers, discussing the wide variety of features and benefits, as well as the installation process and various applications where outdoor pavers can be used to great effect.

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