Facebook CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg spoke to a cast of budding entrepreneurs at Startup School today. The event was hosted by Y Combinator at the University of Stanford and focused on giving programmers advice about starting their own technology companies.
Zuckerberg has been extremely selective when scheduling public appearances since Facebook went public in May 2012. The conversation at Startup School was only his second major technology conference appearance since the company's IPO. Zuckerberg covered a range of subjects during the conversation including his expectations about the social media landscape and the time he spent at Harvard University building Facebook from the ground up.
"I started building Facebook because I wanted to use it in college... we weren't looking to start a company," Zuckerberg reportedly said. "I had this one friend who I went to have pizza with almost every night, we did all our computer science problem sets together at Harvard... and I remember telling him that I was working on this Facebook thing, and I thought it would be cool [as a service for] Harvard."
Zuckerberg also said that he only anticipates the rate of sharing to grow. "We expect this rate [of sharing] will double every 10 years. So in 10 years from now, people will be sharing about 1,000 times as many things as they do today," he reportedly said.
The geeky social media mogul also mentioned that he thought that Internet-based brands have been growing more quickly as time passes. He mentioned how quickly Facebook was able to reach a million users, and how at the time he though it was fast, but now, he's seen several new companies grow much more quickly.
Zuckerberg managed to avoid questions about Facebook's stock price during his appearance at Y Combinator's Startup School, mainly because co-founder of Y Combinator Paul Graham didn't ask him any questions about it onstage. Despite Zuckerberg's avoidance of Facebook stock price issues, he'll be facing the music soon enough.
The company is set to report its earnings on Tuesday, but if the result is anything like other technology juggernauts such as IBM, Intel or Google, the company is likely to come up short of anticipated revenue. Facebook's stock has been down for more than 60 days of trading. Facebook's stock price has been volatile in the short term, but in the long term, Facebook stock has declined. The company will likely address revenue concerns during Tuesday's earnings report.