April 10, 2013
Trending: Mark Zuckerberg May Have Had A Website As A Teenager
Hacker News, The Motherboard and others discovered last week that Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and creator of a popular social networking site, may have had other websites before his long-term relationship with Facebook. This website is also said to have been created in 1999, long before the days of Web 2.0, HTML 5, or any other iteration of the “modern” Internet, thereby possibly adding to the news worthiness of the story.
The Angelfire website is filled with 1990s-style charm, including plain, boring text and a quaint little gimmick. The subheading to “Mark’s Homepage” reads, “The only site where a yellow eye blinks at you.”
Sure enough, a yellow dinosaur eye periodically blinks below this text.
What follows is a rudimentary grid of links to things like “The Vader Fader,” an ancient AOL hack meant to allow Instant Messengers add color to their messages and chat room correspondences.
The creator of the site, known only as “Mark,” created the Vader Fader when he was “a little bored and somewhat inspired on a long weekend between finals.”
The site was apparently built in hopes to be recognized by a “search engine” and drum up some buzz for this fader.
In the site’s “About Me” page, “Mark” writes; “Hi, my name is…Slim Shady. No, really, my name is Slim Shady. Just kidding, my name is Mark (for those of you that don’t know me) and I live in a small town near the massive city of New York. I am currently 15 years old and I just finished freshman year in high school.”
This short description is enough to get CNN.com to write: “All those details match up with Facebook’s billionaire CEO…”
The source code also mentions that the site was written by one Mark Zuckerberg.
Others have noted a link on the archaic website to something called “The Web,” a java applet where people can link to one another and get to know others on the web.
This bar napkin stage of Facebook is enough proof for some to believe that Mark Zuckerberg, a hacker who created the world’s largest social network, did at one point have his own webpage.
The final nail in this proverbial coffin is the email address “[email protected].”
The sleuths at Motherboard couldn’t rest until this mystery was solved and tracked this decaying email address back to Mark Zuckerberg’s father, one Edward Zuckerberg.
Facebook did not respond for comment when asked about the likelihood of a 15-year old New Yorker creating an Angelfire website in 1999.
In other news, Angelfire is still a thing.
Image Credit: Guillaume Paumier / Wikimedia Commons, CC-BY-3.0