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    Any architect would agree that a house is the perfect balance between design and practicality. The homes of these famous billionaires are as opulent as they are convenient, elaborate as they are innovative. This is what it looks like when design meets construction and the price it takes to turn a billionaire's house into a home.

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    "The ultimate combination of beauty, comfort, and technology. It is just right--nothing more, nothing less. It looks great from all angles. It has been the chair icon for the last 50 years." -- Eric Chan, Ecco Design

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    "Originally released in 1972 by Matsushita, the Technics SL-1200 turntable is considered the industry standard by DJs worldwide 35 years later. No other single audio playback device has had as much cultural impact on modern music as this unassuming, built-like-a-tank turntable." -- Jack Buser, Dolby

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  • Lighting design is on fire like never before. Sun-tracking heliostats, compact fluorescents, LEDs--these are just some of the progressive technologies making clinical fluorescent tubes and juice-guzzling incandescents look like the Victor Victrolas of illumination. But the payoff isn't measured just in lumens emitted or kilowatt hours conserved. Lighting can be a tool for boosting worker productivity, improving communication, or simply telegraphing a brand's cool factor.

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  • Design can reward the eyes and ease the demands on our fingertips, yet it's rarely thought of as a gift to our ears. Now unprecedented attention is being devoted to the manipulation of sound. "Audio has a direct line to our sensual and emotional selves," says Ben Rubin, a visual artist and sound designer who has created work for Hewlett-Packard and the new headquarters of The New York Times. "Sound choices can have powerful effects.

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