Top 10 Products of 2012

After a long day on a project site, filing a stack of field measurements, notes, and change-order requests is one of the last things that you want to do. The FormMobi app by A La Mode eases the paper-pushing process by turning your mobile Apple or Android device into a virtual clipboard that syncs up with the cloud. Users can input project data into custom or preexisting templates and forms, record audio, scan barcodes, make calculations, shoot photos, acquire GPS coordinates, and collect client signatures. FormMobi also offers two sketching tools: Advanced CAD Sketch allows users to draw grid-based drawings to scale, add dimensions and labels, and export files to AutoCAD, while Freehand Sketch provides a canvas to fulfill its namesake. Operable without an Internet connection, FormMobi will sync back up to the cloud when access is restored. Starting at $9.99 per month;

Photovoltaics continue to make their way into more building products. In 2009, Dow Solar merged the weather protection offered by the tried-and-true form of the asphalt roofing shingle with the energy-generating potential of CIGS thin-film photovoltaic cells to create Dow Powerhouse Solar Shingles. Manufactured in Michigan, the 22.8"-wide-by-10"-high and 0.5"-thick shingles are being gradually rolled out throughout the United States. •

Hollinsbrook by Minnesota-based Cambria is one of 15 designs in the Waterstone collection of natural quartz. Named after a location in England, as per the company tradition, the quartz contains a mixture of black, chestnut, gray, and white colors. Hollinsbrook comes in 2cm- and 3cm-thicknesses for countertops, and in 1cm-thicknesses for vertical applications such as walls, shower and tub surrounds, and fireplaces. •

Before entering the architectural market, Richlite Co.’s paper-composite products were used for everything from cutting boards to skate ramps. Cascade comprises built-up layers of FSC-certified or post-consumer recycled paper that may be used in applications such as countertops, shelving, and ceiling panels. The product line offers six color variations, all named after the tallest peaks in the Cascade Range in Washington, where the company is based. •

Even after the addition of colorants, Sherwin-Williams Co.’s Emerald Interior acrylic latex paint is free of VOCs. The low-odor, antimicrobial paint, which is tinted with the company's ColorCast Eco Toners, is also Greenguard Certified for indoor air quality. Available in a matte, satin, or semi-gloss finish, the self-priming paint can be tinted to any of the more than 1,500 Sherwin-Williams colors. It will hit store shelves in July along with its outdoor counterpart, Emerald Exterior. •

After four years of researching nonwoven textiles and touring European manufacturing plants with Maharam Design Studio, German designer Konstantin Grcic created Band, a vinyl textile that plays with dimensionality and texture. Resin printing accurately places individual droplets at a specific density and size onto the base layer. The overall effect is a study of proportion and movement that creates a depth as great as Grcic’s design versatility. •

Teknion’s universal desking system Interpret comprises reconfigurable work surfaces, a support structure, and storage components that come in multiple sizes and shapes. Customizable features include screen heights and screen elements, and the integration of components such as whiteboards. Interpret offers several accent-color and finish options, including storm-white laminate for desk surfaces (shown). •

Designed by Roberto Menghi in 1968, FontanaArte’s Globo di Luce features a blown-glass globe with metallic finish and an anodized-aluminum internal reflector. Suspended on a transparent cord a maximum of 98.4" below a chrome-plated metal ceiling canopy, the 11.8"-wide-by-11.4"-tall pendant uses a 75W T4 G9 halogen lamp; a 17.7"-wide-by-16.9"-tall version is also available. Globo di Luce comes in red, silver, or gold. •

Every one of the chairs that Hans J. Wegner designed for Carl Hansen & Søn has its own serial number—the Wishbone Chair, for instance, is CH24, and the Shell Chair is CH07. In 2010, the company added another Wegner serial number to its roster: CH468, also known as the Oculus Chair. Though Wegner designed the chair in 1960, it did not enter production until three years after his death—a midcentury icon, deferred. •

It’s kind of mind-blowing when you consider that Eero Saarinen designed his Womb chair—ostensibly an icon of the ’60s—way back in 1946. The Knoll bestseller is still fabricated as originally intended, with a molded, reinforced-fiberglass shell wrapped in foam, and cushions made from polyester fiber with a foam core. The woven KnollTextiles upholstery fabric shown here, Cato, is also a midcentury classic, dating to 1961. •

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