Is Mark Zuckerberg the next Bill Gates?

October 24, 2007, 6:32 PM UTC

The best silly-speculation I’ve heard so far this week…


While we all sit outside Facebook HQ in Palo Alto, waiting to see whether Microsoft (MSFT), or Google (GOOG), gets to be the social network’s new beau, one apps guy I know had a great theory. Let’s say Mister Softie wins, with a $1.5 billion buy in. Microsoft gets first dibs, not only on the nascent business, but on the nascent businessman: Mark Zuckerberg. Yes! Who better to succeed Bill Gates?

As every school child knows, the similarities are striking. Both men came from upper-middle class families and dropped out of Harvard to pursue their tech visions. Gates built a new platform (actually, two, if you count DOS and Windows) and Zuckerberg aims to create one now. The only thing that makes no sense to me in this analysis is that clearly, Zuckerman models himself more on Steve Jobs. He’s got his own uniform, and uses a Mac. Even his delivery, seen here at the seminal F8 Keynote, reminds me of Jobs at Mac World.

Is it too late for Apple to swoop in and buy a big chunk of Facebook? iFace! It has a certain ring to it.