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Mark Zuckerberg is co-founder and CEO of the social-networking website Facebook, as well as one of the world's youngest billionaires.
Bill Gates - Mini Biography (3:42)
Steve Jobs - Mini Biography (3:39)
Mark Zuckerberg was a computer programmer by the age of 12. While a sophomore at Harvard, he co-founded Facebook out of his dorm room. Facebook is now the world's largest social network, making Zuckerberg a billionaire.
Bill Gates and his partner Paul Allen built the world's largest software business, Microsoft. He became one of the richest men in the world and a major philanthropist through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Steve Jobs met Steve Wozniak while in high school and in 1976, they started Apple Computers. Jobs oversaw the development of revolutionary products like the iPhone and iPad.
As a teenager, Bill Gates became obsessed with computers.
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Born on May 14, 1984, in White Plains, New York, Mark Zuckerberg co-founded the social-networking website Facebook out of his college dorm room. He left Harvard after his sophomore year to concentrate on the site, the user base of which has grown to more than 250 million people, making Zuckerberg a billionaire. The birth of Facebook was recently portrayed in the film The Social Network.
"With a generation of younger folks who have thrived on the success of their companies, there is a big opportunity for many of us to give back earlier in our lifetime and see the impact of our philanthropic efforts."
"If you're going to go on to build a service that is influential and that a lot of people rely on, then you need to be mature, right? I think I've grown and learned a lot."
"Understanding people is not a waste of time."
“Our mission is to make the world more open and connected. We do this by giving people the power to share whatever they want and be connected to whoever they want, no matter where they are.”
“I have this fear of getting locked into doing things that are not the most impactful things you can do. I think people really undervalue the option value in flexibility.”
“What Facebook is today isn't a set of information, it's a community of people who are using Facebook to stay connected and share information. They are only going to do that as long as they trust us.”
“Everything I do breaks, but I fix it quickly.”
“I would personally rather be underestimated. It gives us latitude to go out and make some big bets.”
“Apps aren’t the center of the world. People are.”
“Facebook is in a very different place than Apple, Google, Amazon, Samsung, and Microsoft. We are trying to build a community.”
“Sometimes we are going to do stuff that’s controversial, and we’re going to make mistakes. We have to be willing to take risks.”
“People have really gotten comfortable not only sharing more information and different kinds, but more openly and with more people. That social norm is just something that has evolved over time.”
“[T]he real story of Facebook is just that we've worked so hard for all this time. I mean, the real story is actually probably pretty boring, right? I mean, we just sat at our computers for six years and coded."
“A lot of people who are worried about privacy and those kinds of issues will take any minor misstep that we make and turn it into as big a deal as possible.”
Mark Elliot Zuckerberg was born on May 14, 1984, in White Plains, New York, into a comfortable, well-educated family, and raised in the nearby village of Dobbs Ferry. His father, Edward Zuckerberg, ran a dental practice attached to the family's home. His mother, Karen, worked as a psychiatrist before the birth of the couple's four children—Mark, Randi, Donna and Arielle.
Zuckerberg developed an interest in computers at an early age; when he was about 12, he used Atari BASIC to create a messaging program he named "Zucknet." His father used the program in his dental office, so that the receptionist could inform him of a new patient without yelling across the room. The family also used Zucknet to communicate within the house. Together with his friends, he also created computer games just for fun. "I had a bunch of friends who were artists," he said. "They'd come over, draw stuff, and I'd build a game out of it."
To keep up with Mark's burgeoning interest in computers, his parents hired private computer tutor David Newman to come to the house once a week and work with Mark. Newman later told reporters that it was hard to stay ahead of the prodigy, who began taking graduate courses at nearby Mercy College around this same time.
Zuckerberg later studied at Phillips Exeter Academy, an exclusive preparatory school in New Hampshire. There he showed talent in fencing, becoming the captain of the school's team. He also excelled in literature, earning a diploma in classics. Yet Zuckerberg remained fascinated by computers, and continued to work on developing new programs. While still in high school, he created an early version of the music software Pandora, which he called Synapse. Several companies—including AOL and Microsoft—expressed an interest in buying the software, and hiring the teenager before graduation. He declined the offers.
After graduating from Exeter in 2002, Zuckerberg enrolled at Harvard University. By his sophomore year at the ivy league institution, he had developed a reputation as the go-to software developer on campus. It was at that time that he built a program called CourseMatch, which helped students choose their classes based on the course selections of other users. He also invented Facemash, which compared the pictures of two students on campus and allowed users to vote on which one was more attractive. The program became wildly popular, but was later shut down by the school administration after it was deemed inappropriate.
Based on the buzz of his previous projects, three of his fellow students—Divya Narendra, and twins Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss—sought him out to work on an idea for a social networking site they called Harvard Connection.
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