Today is a momentous occasion in the life of one the tech world’s greatest wunderkinds: Mark Zuckerberg
turns 30. It’s an even more notable birthday for the Facebook
founder than the average joe because of an off-the-cuff comment he made about younger people being smarter than older people back in 2007 when he was, most definitely, a young
“I want to stress the importance of being young and technical,” Zuckerberg told a crowd at Y Combinator back in 2007, according to VentureBeat
. “Young people are just smarter,” he continued. “Why are most chess masters under 30? I don’t know.”
Age 30, it seemed to 22-year-old Zuck, is a year in which you are no longer “young”. To be fair, he further qualified his point of view. “Young people just have simpler lives. We may not own a car. We may not have family.” Later he added, “Simplicity in life allows you to focus on what’s important.”
He had a point about distractions in life, although you could argue that he was a bit misguided. True, being unattached and owning few possessions can leave you free to--for example--build one of the most important Internet businesses of all time, but having a partner and raising children and going on beautiful vacations, etc., though “distracting”, can also bring fulfillment and great joy.
In any case, Zuckerberg is joining the ranks of the not-young today. But if anyone teases him about it today or brings up his comments from 2007, he’ll probably just shrug and go back to being an insanely successful billionaire.