An Angelfire website allegedly created by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg in 1999 is making the rounds on the net today. If legit, it provides an eerily prophetic look into the mind of a 15-year-old high school student that would later go on to change the world as we know it today.
The site includes a number of Java applets spread across multiple pages. Examples include a magnetic poetry section that’s still functional, a Java drawing tool, a base converter and even a pong game. But perhaps most interesting of all is something the author refers to as The Web.
The Web is essentially an applet designed to connect people on the Internet. He notes that the web is a pretty small place although he is hopeful that it will grow into something much larger. Zuckerberg invites readers to send in their name and the names of two people that they want added to The Web. He points out that participation is required for it to work well.
If nothing else, it’s clear that Zukerberg had an accurate vision of the future and was thinking about connecting people on the web much sooner than anyone may have thought.
So, is this the real deal or just an elaborate hoax? All signs seem to point to this being legit. The e-mail address posted at the bottom of the site (Themarke51@aol.com) is linked to the username of the primary account holder: ekzooks. This handle is widely used across the web by Zuckerberg’s father, Dr. Edward Zuckerberg. What’s more, the source code on the Angelfire homepage lists Mark Zuckerberg as the author of the page. A quick check using the Wayback Machine shows the page was indeed built in 1999.