Character Study: Billionaires
The following net post was taken off the net (pointers to who wrote it
originally would be much appreciated!). It's a great real-world example
of what a billionaire in any game setting might do for their luxury
Cyberpunk corporates, action genre monguls, ultra-successful game designers,
all those at the top of the money chain might live like this.
>From the "When I'm a billionaire" department:
Building officials from a dozen local municipalities toured Bill and
Melinda Gates' house last month, below are the comments from one of the
For comments, attributions, etc, email us!
- Currently 300 workers including 104 electricians.
- No visible electrical outlets anywhere. Gates does not like "clutter".
- Construction likely complete in September 1997, 3 months behind owner's
- 112 steps from the main floor to the main entry (or take the elevator).
- Wood columns from main floor to roof in entry area are over 70 feet long.
- All timbers used inside and out are finished the same -- 3 inches have
been removed from the exterior of the wood and then sanded to a satin
- All bolts throughout the house are stainless steel and oriented the same
- All woodwork is flawless. Much of the woodwork is of various rare
species from all over the world -- imported especially for the Gates'.
- Some of the interior passage doors weigh over 800 lbs, but are balanced
for easy use.
- Accoustics are a concern throughout. Various woods and fabrics are
being used. Accoustic panels in the Ballroom move out of sight on their
- Floor is heated everywhere including the driveway and walks.
- Security system (automated and personnel) is redundant. Hidden cameras
everywhere including interior stone walls.
- Sensors in the floor can track a person to within 6 inches. System is
monitored at the Microsoft campus.
- Gates has a personal 4-car garage. House for the maintenance staff has
its own 3-car garage. Nanny parks in the 6-car carport across from the
main entry. An additional 10-cars can be parked in a subterranean arched
concrete building which through an electronic transformation becomes a
- Existing cedar tree was determined by Gates to be in the wrong location
and moved 6 inches.
- Gates insisted on saving a 140 year old maple adjacent to the driveway.
The tree is monitored electronically 24 hours per day via computer. If it
seems dry, it gets just the right amount of water automatically delivered.
- There will be an 18 hole putting range.
- A salmon hatchery is being finished.
- If you wish, your music will follow you throughout the house -- even at
the bottom of the pool.
- Many doors are blended so well with the walls that it is hard to see them.
- Theatre (underground in a concrete shell) is the most state of the art
theatre in the world according to a specialty contractor.
- Entry gate senses when your car approaches and opens fully by the time
- Very old antique cabinets from China have been brought in and built into
the walls with adjacent paneling built to match the cabinets exactly.
- 52 miles of communication cable in the building.
- Shower curtain next to the spa is a 4500 lb slab of granite.
- Melinda has 42 linear feet of clothes hanging space in her closet
operated like a dry cleaner's rack.
- Master bathtub can be filled to the right temperature and depth by Gates
as he drives home from work.
- There is a 28 foot high cantilever retaining wall.
- Reinforcing steel in all concrete is four times the code minimum. No. 18
steel wrapped with no. 5 ties was common for simple columns.
- There is a loading bay within the building.
- An interior designer disagreed with the layout of a portion of the home.
Demolition resulted and 160 cubic yards of cured, cast-in-place concrete