Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg may have been experimenting with social networks as far back as 1999, based on what appears to be the first website he built as a high school freshman.
A poster at the Hacker News board discovered the Angelfire site, which displays some basic coding and links to a bunch of little Java-based applets he created. It’s everything you might expect from a late-’90s personal page, including the dancing letters that spell “Mark’s Homepage” at the top and an animated GIF of a yellow and purple Sauron eye.
Among the more amusing bits is the “About Me” section, in which he says “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.”
There’s also a program he calls “The Web,” which shows the way he and his friends are linked to one another. “If you see someone who you know and would like to be linked with but your name is not already on The Web, then you can contact me and I will link that person to you and put you on The Web. If you do not know anyone on The Web, contact me anyway and I will put you on it.”
Suffice to say Zuckerberg has mastered the Internet a little more since then.