Friday, February 25, 2011

Mark Zuckerberg

Mark Elliot Zuckerberg (born May 14, 1984) is an American computer scientistsoftware developer and philanthropist best known for creating thesocial networking site Facebook, of which he is CEO and president. It was co-founded as a private company in 2004 by Zuckerberg and classmatesDustin MoskovitzEduardo Saverin, and Chris Hughes while they were students at Harvard University. In 2010, Zuckerberg was named Timemagazine's Person of the Year.
Mark Elliot Zuckerberg
Zuckerberg at South by Southwest in 2008.
BornMark Elliot Zuckerberg
May 14, 1984 (age 26)
White Plains, New York
ResidencePalo Alto, California.
Alma materHarvard College (dropped out in 2004)
OccupationCEO/President of Facebook
(24% shareholder in 2010)
Known forCo-founding Facebook in 2004; becoming world's youngest billionaire as of 2008
Home townDobbs Ferry, New York
Net worthincrease US$12.5 billion (2011)
RelativesRandi, Donna and Arielle (sisters)
AwardsTime Person of the Year 2010
FieldsComputer Science

Zuckerberg launched Facebook from his Harvard dormitory room on February 4, 2004. An earlier inspirationfor Facebook may have come from Phillips Exeter Academy, the prep school from which Zuckerberg graduated2002. It published its own student directory, “The Photo Address Book,” which students referred to as “The Facebook.” Such photo directories were an important part of the student social experience at many private schools. With them, students were able to list attributes such as their class years, their proximities to friends, and their telephone numbers.
Once at college, Zuckerberg's Facebook started off as just a "Harvard thing" until Zuckerberg decided to spread it to other schools, enlisting the help of roommateDustin Moskovitz. They first started it at StanfordDartmouthColumbiaNew York UniversityCornellBrown, and Yale, and then at other schools that had social contacts with Harvard.
Zuckerberg moved to Palo AltoCalifornia, with Moskovitz and some friends. They leased a small house that served as an office. Over the summer, Zuckerberg metPeter Thiel who invested in the company. They got their first office in mid-2004. According to Zuckerberg, the group planned to return to Harvard but eventually decided to remain in California.[attribution needed] They had already turned down offers by major corporations to buy out Facebook. In an interview in 2007, Zuckerberg explained his reasoning:
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.
He restated these same goals to Wired magazine in 2010: "The thing I really care about is the mission, making the world open."Earlier, in April 2009, Zuckerberg sought the advice of former Netscape CFO Peter Currie about financing strategies for Facebook.
On July 21, 2010, Zuckerberg reported that the company reached the 500 million-user mark. When asked whether Facebook could earn more income from advertising as a result of its phenomenal growth, he explained:
I guess we could ... If you look at how much of our page is taken up with ads compared to the average search query. The average for us is a little less than 10 percent of the pages and the average for search is about 20 percent taken up with ads ... That’s the simplest thing we could do. But we aren’t like that. We make enough money. Right, I mean, we are keeping things running; we are growing at the rate we want to.
In 2010, Stephen Levy, who authored the 1984 book Hackers: Heroes of the Computer Revolution, wrote that Zuckerberg "clearly thinks of himself as ahacker." Zuckerberg said that "it's OK to break things" "to make them better."Facebook instituted "hackathons" held every six to eight weeks where participants would have one night to conceive of and complete a project. The company provided music, food, and beer at the hackathons, and many Facebook staff members, including Zuckerberg, regularly attended. "The idea is that you can build something really good in a night", Zuckerberg told Levy. "And that's part of the personality of Facebook now ... It's definitely very core to my personality."
Vanity Fair magazine named Zuckerberg number 1 on its 2010 list of the Top 100 "most influential people of the Information Age".Zuckerberg ranked number 23 on the Vanity Fair 100 list in 2009. In 2010, Zuckerberg was chosen as number 16 in New Statesman's annual survey of the world's 50 most influential figures.

President Barack Obama and Zuckerberg talk before a private meeting where Obama dined with technology business leaders inWoodside, California, February 17, 2011. (Also pictured, from left: Carol Bartz ofYahoo!, Art Levinson of GenentechSteve Westly of The Westly Group, and Eric Schmidt of Google.)

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