Ten years ago today, Mark Zuckerberg gave birth to The Facebook and launched an online social revolution in his Harvard dorm room. We all know what happened next—thanks in no small part to an eight-time Academy Award-nominated film. With such humble beginnings, no one could have predicted the wild success (and cries of outrage) the site's many iterations would bring over the years.
So in honor of Facebook's tenth birthday, travel with us back to simpler times as we take a look back at the site's biggest design changes in each year of its existence. Prepare yourself—nostalgia is about to hit hard.
2004: On February 4, The Facebook goes live on Harvard's campus before slowly opening itself to other colleges about a month later.
2005: Dropping the "the," Facebook.com expands to include high school students and introduces the Photos feature for the very first time.
I have a hard time giving Zuckerberg all the credit for creating a "social revolution." Don't get me wrong, the guy knows more about programming & running a business more than I probably ever will. What I mean is, he took an idea for a site that already existed and had already been successful. Maybe not on the level it is now, but I don't think the site itself, or its creator, deserve all the credit. There's only so many ways you can create a site that allows you to add connections, tell them what you're doing, and post pictures. I believe (just my opinion) that it was timing that benefited Zuckerberg most. He introduced his version of this concept at the right time, the stars of social networking were aligned. People had already showed, with MySpace, that they were willing to post their lives. It faded, but the younger brothers & sisters of the MySpace crowd grew older, already exposed to the lure of social networking, eager to get in on the action and facebook was there waiting for them. Then came the adults who, for whatever reason, decided they wanted to share too. People's thought processes began to change...they began to believe that their lives, no matter how mundane, were important enough to share with everyone. And then your connections praise you whether they care or not (spoiler: most do not). To my friends & family, I refer to it as the facebook disease. If it weren't for all the people willing to post their lives to the internet, none of this would've been so successful.
Facebook may fade away just as MySpace did, but as long as people have a desire to post their lives, the next one will come along and take its place.