The Brilliance!


We’re really internet and we’re really back. A website about things Benjamin , Chuck , Virgil , and various friends & guests think are interesting. Little-to-no specific focus, a bit odd, speling errors, and incredibly culturally relevant.

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My new Ultimate Ears Super.Fi Pro 5’s!

Long name right? So I made this post a while back about wanting a custom pair…while I haven’t pulled the trigger on those quite yet I am fortunate enough to be the new owner of a pair of the Super.Fi Pro 5’s…the dual driver ones. So yeah…they are really, really good, that’s pretty much all that can be said. Very good in the mids and highs. Like you’ll read anywhere else on the net, getting them to properly ‘seal’ is the key to good sound…and once you do its quite buttery. In fact I’m listening to this crazy drum and bass Robocop remix on my iPod right now with them, sounds amazing…shout to Nat from ASF for sending me this track like a year ago. The build on these things is quite incredible as well…I have gone thru too many pairs of the Sony Fontopias, so these are very refreshing in their quality. I love the clear cord as well – cool touch. Another thing – people are always yacking how iTunes tracks are128kbps and you can really tell with a quality system – true indeed, you can hear nuances with these that I hadn’t heard before. Beautiful set of headphones. Oh yeah…be on the look-out for a little Ultimate Ears + INDISTR project here in the next couple months…yeah.

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So Long Silver!

I think it was around the time when DVD players were just breaking the scene is when all electronics switched over to silver. For a while there everyone had mismatched entertainment systems. So funny. My inspiration for this post comes from my new found desire for rubbery matte black gadgets. Call me weird, but enough of this silver and no more metal. I just switched my Motorola Q over to that rubberized black case and it makes a huge difference in how it looks and feels. Whoever suggested the rubber texture deserve a raise. When Apple released the Black Macbook I almost had a heart attack. You can’t deny its stealth design. And to round out this triplet, this new digi-camera I have my eye on, the Canon Powershot G7. It balances that line between a huge SLR and a trendy myspace camera. Bottom line is you can take a photo and still look like a serious photographer rather than a tourist. What’s even better is having all your gadgets match…call me superficial, and I’d probably agree. Whoops!

652 small, islands 2.0?!

What?! This is crazy…and I think it’s cool, although I haven’t totally made up my mind yet. So I always post various islands I want to visit someday, places that spark my imagination, places that inspire me to day-dream more often…etc. So I have to post on something like this…just have to. Here is the basic idea: It’s a web-based community where you can actually visit and/or interact with a real community of island dwellers in Fiji. Kind of like the movie The Beach except its each member of the real island is also a member of the web based community…and anyone can join the web-based community then become a tribe member, at various different levels, where they actually travel to and participate in the actual island experience. I’m making this sound super confusing. You’re best bet would be to check the site at the link below. I got the info on this from National Geographic’s Adventure magazine. Hmm…kind of a wild idea…what category should I have put this in?!

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Grizzly Bear, Yellow House!

I’m going to copy Virgil and stick with a short post here… Some music that’s ‘cool as a shop fan’ as my friend Bruce would say…Grizzly Bear. Everyone seems to describe them as multi-layered in their sound. I would have to agree, thickly melodic, smooth, relaxing… I almost hear a bit of The Beatles and maybe Radiohead in their stuff…maybe cause I listen to those groups too much. Anyway, I’m digging their album ‘Yellow House’…all on a suggestion from Chuck…thanks, I know I’m late.

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Monday Randoms!!!

They say today is the unhappiest day of the year. I don’t know who these ‘experts’ think they are, but if you are in Chicago or Indianapolis right now, it is most certainly not the unhappiest day of the year. First and foremost, in regards to the Bears and the Colts both winning on Sunday and heading to the Superbowl, I think it’s important to pay respect to the fact that this is the first time a black coach will be in the Superbowl…of course, actually, two black coaches are in this year which means one will win. Good luck to the Colts and all, but, I’ve got to root for the Bears of course…Chicago and all it’s suburbs are buzzing right now. It’s such a cool feeling. Your team wins, you win…that’s just the feeling that you get as a sports fan. What else…I saw Children Of Men on Saturday night…Very good movie with very good acting and a wild plot…too bad the baby in the movie is so clearly CGI…Anyways, the theater I was in had some problems with the sound so afterwards I went and complained, along with the rest of the theater, and got my money back. Ha…saw the whole movie though. Alright…so the other thing that was good about this weekend was SNL with Jeremy Piven the other night….I mean…come on…those Blizzard Man skits or the MacGruber ones…Haha…anyways…..

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R-R-R-Roc Pastelle with Gucci on!!!

Pastelle is coming soon. The website has just been updated. Click the link below for a look at the site and more information.

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Secret wall tattoos!!!

This isn’t exactly new…it’s been online now for probably over 2 years or so. Maybe longer, I’m not sure…but I haven’t really seen it posted up in many places, and, like most of the stuff we post here on THE BRILLIANCE, I just think this is really just pretty damn cool. So anyways, there’s my ‘get with the times’ disclaimer…According to Wikipedia, Josh Homme started doing this secret wall tattoo thing a few years ago. Basically taking a mirror or piece of framed art off the wall in a hotel room or hallway, painting or drawing something on the wall itself, and putting the painting/mirror back up…or even doing this on the bottom of furniture. What’s the point? None, really…except it would be fun while you’re traveling to do it yourself or look in your room to see if someone’s done it already. Kind of like the poor-man’s graffiti… Too scared to get out and throw something up on a wall in the street? Go in the hotel room, do it in there, and on top of that, cover it up. Genius…for those of us who are real nancy boys I guess. Ha. Nancy boy. Anyways, there’s a Myspace page for Secret Wall Tattoos, and is linked below.

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How to keep secrets…Apple.

I dig this article…and it digged it, ha – that was corny. I have always been fascinated with how Apple keeps products so unbelievably secret until they launch them – its almost unbelievable at times. Especially compared with their competitors and pretty much any other industry where product leaks are totally common place. I think the first time I was really struck by Apple’s ability to keep things secret was when they released the iPod nano – first generation. The huge undertaking that it is to launch a physical product with manufacturing overseas then to announce it to everyone’s surprise and have it be available THAT DAY at retail stores around the country. Pretty unreal. The iPhone is of course even more unbelievable - 30 months in development, way more outside support needed, etc…wild stuff. Check the article. (Does the picture I attached really make sense? Ha?)

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Random & well branded: Jack Spade!

I tend to take my time with a lot of brands – and honestly I don’t have a terribly good reason why. I have this thing where I like to research them over the course of time before I actually buy anything. And lately – the past year or so – I have been really into products that I intend on owning for a long time, products that age well. I’ve always been a really big fan of how Kate Spade did her thing and started a really tremendous brand…I’ll be honest in that I think its lost a little luster with over accessibility lately – but still good stuff. Anyway, enough women’s bags – Jack Spade has always had some cool stuff but its their presentation that has always piqued my interest. I remember when Lacoste was just kind of re-emerging as a fashion brand and it was very hard to find in Chicago. There were only 2 spots, Lord & Taylor – and then very randomly – the top floor of the Kate Spade store where the Jack Spade stuff was. I loved how he/they integrated other brands they liked into their own retail spot. Perfect way to build a brand-image quickly. Ever since then I have checked their site regularly and I love how they have super random products – ping-pong case, leather match book covers, c-lo dice kit (!!), rubber bands, etc…and that jacket they had last season, the plaid one, was nuts. I love brands that just do really random stuff – true lifestyle products. So yeah, I just got a MacBook this week, and the idea of a laptop case feels too PC – so I think I’m going to do the Jack Spade backpack instead…good stuff.

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POOF! Your phone is obsolete!!!

Apple seriously has out done itself by dropping the iPhone. We here at THE BRILLIANCE are going nuts with the emails keeping Ben up-to-date while he’s in a meeting discreetly checking his Treo. I am speechless….Ill just let Steve Jobs post this via satellite. These quotes are essentially in real time by-the-way of him giving a demo of the iPhone at the keynote. “I’m going to load up stock information off the web, and right onto the phone here.” Apple’s shares up over $2.50. Ha.” Or in reference to the $499 entry level price tag ”We should charge more for this stuff!...” Seriously Windows were chasing the iPod with the Zune and Apple pulls this stunt…..Ouch!!! What other company has the CEO’s of Google & Yahoo hand in hand, gitty on the same stage at the prospect of the ton of money they are going to make….Chuck what’d you think about this madness??// Chuck: So yeah…what can I say? As a Mac user myself, this is definitely amazing. Of course, I have to mention some of the turnoffs…Cingular/AT&T only is very limiting. That immediately creates a problem for anybody on a different provider. And anybody on Cingular who was paying attention to this was probably drooling, until they heard they have to wait until June…but honestly…that’s not that far off. You’ll be just fine if you’re one of the eager Cingular users dying to get this…be patient. The pinch-zoom thing is pretty awesome…as is the way music fades in and out when you get a call…seamless wi-fi and EDGE, and free push email from Yahoo!?! Nice…now you don’t have to lug around a Blackberry to have that… On another, kind of downer note though…where was the new updates to a Mac Pro? Leopoard / new software? This phone stuff is nice and all, but it would have been nice to see some other product. And this Apple TV thing is…eh…kind of useless. No DVR, 40gig HD, no 1080…seems a little ‘blah’ to me. It’s cool you can stream your media from your computer wirelessly to the thing, but on a whole…it’s alright, not great in my opinion…anyways, overall though, this phone is unbelievable as a product and as a technological step forward…Should have bought some Apple stock yesterday…