Today's tech debates: Zuckerberg, Microsoft, and Uncle Sam

'The Social Network' vs. Facebook, Android vs. Windows Phone 7, and the feds vs. the people -- residents of Cringeville speak up

Digging through the virtual reader mailbag today I found some great responses to my posts on a variety of topics, including Facebook movies, Microsoft phones, and government wiretaps. Here are some of the more interesting ones.

First off, I wrote a couple of posts about Facebook, its boy-wonder founder Mark Zuckerberg, and their Hollywood makeover. But Cringester K. S. saw a different Mark Zuckerberg on screen than I did when watching "The Social Network" recently.

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... Too bad the movie doesn't show me the true Mark Zuckerburg. I wish I could go to dinner with him. I felt he was marvelous in his retorts during the depositions. I saw personal weaknesses (like we all have) and otherwise felt Mark Zuckerburg (while unusual) was being taken advantage of by most everyone else. It is amazing and intriguing that six years ago face book did not exist, and today 1 in 14 people of the entire world’s population know and use Facebook.

Along those lines, reader A. M. asks, "Is Zuckerberg different?" He wonders whether there's a geek-genius gene possessed by the likes of Zuckerberg (and Gates and Jobs) that the rest of us just don't have:

I've recently caught myself asking if every successive generation of kid wonderkins have the exact same traits? You've obviously followed the Jobs and Gates of the tech world and know their personalities quite well. Is Mark Z just the next person with similar traits (and possibly upbringing), or is there something truly different and unique about him? Is there a pattern of some sort that could be developed into a program that would allow people to answer a questionnaire to determine the likelihood that they will become the next nerd ruler? Can this be retroactively applied to the Edisons and Watts of history - and possibly even farther back?

Rather than nerd DNA, I suspect Gates, Jobs, Zuck, and Tom all possessed a perfect storm of intelligence, ambition, determination, innate geekiness, good timing, and plain old dumb luck. We should all be so lucky.

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