Thursday, January 27, 2011

Facebook big boss: Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg

Come face to face with the man who changed and revolutionized the world of communication. Who had helped connect more than half a billion people across the globe. Whose expertise in software development made him one of the youngest billionaires in the world today. With more than 500 million users around the world, if FACEBOOK is a nation, it is the third most populated country next to China and India. For his exceptional communication tool invention, TIME and FORTUNE (together with Apple's CEO Steve Jobs) magazines named him 2010 PERSON OF THE YEAR. As the decade closes, he could easily become the top favorite to bring home the honor "A Person Who Changed the World"...

Mark Elliot Zuckerberg was born in Dobbs Ferry, New York on May 14, 1984. People may wonder why the site's color is blue, well, the young inventor has a red-green color blindness that makes him difficult to be attracted with other shades other than blue, this explains why Facebook site's color is BLUE.

So just how Facebook was born?

In February 2004, while still on his second year (Computer Science) at Harvard University, Zuckerberg, together with his classmates, Dustin Moskovitz, Eduardo Saveren and Chris Hughes, launched Facebook at their dormitory room. Initially called The Facebook, Zuckerberg intended it as an exclusive site for Harvard students to post an individual profile online.

Years later, Zuckerberg and Saveren had a falling out which prompted the latter to sell more than half of his Facebook ownership. But unlike Zuckerberg who did not finish his course, Saveren graduated magna cumlaude at Harvard in 2006 with a degree in Economics. He now lives in Singapore and recently renounced his U.S citizenship.

Zuckerberg’s passion in computer started in his early years. At the age of 12, he developed a software program called “ZuckNet” to be able to communicate with his father while away at his dental clinic.

While at Harvard, he developed a program “CourseMatch” for students to help form a study group and help them pick a class selection decisions online. Then he built Facemash (the parent of Facebook) which allowed users to select a best looking person from photo choices side-by-side. This invention became popular in the campus, but other serious-minded students were very angry at Zuckerberg because the program allowed users to pick photos without the owners' knowledge, of course Harvard was not amused, so the college department shut it down and Zuckerberg was subjected to a disciplinary action.

Months later, the computer genius dropped out and left Harvard and moved with his friends to Palto Alo, California to set up an office. Many corporations wanted to buy facebook, but the young scientist refused, stating that ” It's not because of the amount of money. For me and my colleagues, the most important thing is that we create an open information flow for people. Having media corporations owned by conglomerates is just not an attractive idea to me".

By 2010, the social networking site reached the 500 million-user mark making it the number one social networking site in the world today which streamed billions of dollars to Zuckerberg’s account. The billionaire is now into philanthropy, establishing a foundation called “Education Foundation”. In December 8, 2010, Zuckerberg signed on “The Giving Pledge”, a campaign initiated by two richest people in the world—Bill Gates and Warren Buffet-- encouraging American billionaires to make a commitment to share most of their money to philanthropic activities.

Update: On April 2012, Zuckerberg acquired INSTAGRAM, a photosharing and filtering application for iPhone. Facebook now is preparing its first Initial Public Offering which means Facebook would soon become a public company, hmmm I am wondering what is the impact of this to the users' account (I am afraid!).

FYI: Mark Zuckerberg is a Jewish and still single but he has a live-in girlfriend, Priscilla Chan, a Chinese medical student. As of May 2012, Forbes magazine named him the 35th richest person in the world with a personal net worth asset of $17.5 billion.

READ THE LISTING OF WORLD'S BILLIONAIRE HERE

Sources: Forbes Magazine, Fortune Magazine, Time Magazine


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