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It always makes me happy to see innovations in watershaping.  As I’ve mentioned before, there were times in the 1980s when I had the sense that not much was possible beyond what we already had on hand.  But the past 20 years have completely driven off that impression, and I’m happy to say that just about every time I turn around something new jumps to my attention.

I have two such developments in mind as I write this, one that appeals to me because of my love of opportunities to

Blog art croppedBy Jim McCloskey

I’ve written a couple of my recent blogs about public pools, access to them, their cost, their status and my growing concern that, for a complex of reasons, swimming skills and our basic societal inclination to be water-involved is slowly moving onto the cultural version of the endangered species list.

It’s in this context that I call your attention to

Blog art croppedBy Jim McCloskey

I’m going to start the New Year by breaking a personal tradition – and I’m going to do it on a grand scale.

As I’ve written in past first-of-the-year blogs, I’m not inclined to make New Year’s resolutions for myself, mainly because when I made them in the distant past, it would generally take less than a

Blog art croppedBy Jim McCloskey

Three news stories caught my eye as I began thinking about the completion of another year’s set of WaterShapes World blogs.  These aren’t the usual holiday-oriented/feel-good items, as you’ll see.

The first comes from the web site of the

Blog art croppedBy Jim McCloskey

Pardon the impression I may have given in my November 18 blog that the 2015 International Pool|Spa|Patio Expo was entirely about Genesis and its merger with the National Swimming Pool Foundation.  Far from it – and therein hangs a tale.

When I first started attending these shows in the mid-1980s, I was fairly well dazzled by what I saw as I wandered the floor:  If you spent as

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A couple weeks back, I was figuring that my time at the 2015 edition of the International Pool|Spa|Patio Expo would be quite routine – visiting with old friends, making a few new ones, catching up with our sponsors and recruiting several more.

But those easy expectations all changed shortly before the show when the announcement came, first through

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I have two very special reasons for inviting you to stop by the WaterShapes booth during this year’s International Pool|Spa|Patio Expo in Las Vegas:  

[  ]  First, I want to talk with you about the WaterShapes Professional Network and all of the reasons you should sign up right away.  As a minor barrage of emails advised last month, we’re on

Blog art croppedBy Jim McCloskey

As I wrote in a recent blog (“The Way-Back Machine,” September 23), I envy you if you live in a community where your public pools are still being used to teach people of all ages (and especially children) to swim.  

It means that kids in your area are able to discover swimming in capable, confidence-building environments – the sort of supportive circumstances that were found just about everywhere

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I’ve been around watershapes a long time – for more than three-quarters of my professional life.  I started out with scientific and technical magazines in 1980, but once I started splashing around at Pool & Spa News in 1987, I never really looked back.

As it turns out, I found my way into the world of aquatics

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A couple weeks ago in this space, I raised a few questions about public swimming pools and their current tendency toward becoming utterly grand, infinitely varied, impressively expensive mega-facilities.  I also hearkened back to watershaping on the level of the places in which I’d learned to swim – pools where I gained the strength and skill required to

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It all started at the Orlando pool expo last November, when Noah Nehlich stopped by the WaterShapes booth toward the end of the show and asked how we might work together.  

He’s the founder of Structure Studios (which produces the Pool Studio software system), and I have to admit that I’d never been terribly receptive to the concept of digital design.  At that point, in fact, I was still so

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There’s no doubt that watershaping took it on the chin in the Great Recession.  Some businesses vanished, and those that have persisted are, in many if not most cases, leaner than they were back in 2008 and just different in many respects from what they once were.

It’s also fair to report, because the economy and

Blog art croppedBy Jim McCloskey

Something has been nagging at the edges of my consciousness for a while now, and I think it’s high time to write about it.

One of my duties for the past several years has been to roam the Internet to find stories related to pools and all sorts of other watershapes and decide whether a given item merits your attention.  From the start, I noticed but did not share a whole class of items related to

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