Facebook’s 1.3bn faces on one webpage

14 Jul 2015

A closer look at The Faces of Facebook

Since it was founded in 2004, Facebook has amassed well over a billion members – which is a lot of profile pictures to squash into one page.

Somehow, though, someone has managed to do it with The Faces of Facebook, a webpage serving up close to 1.3bn Facebook members’ profile images at once.

According to Facebook’s latest stats, the site had reached 1.44bn monthly active users as of 31 March 2015, so The Faces of Facebook is a tad behind on the numbers with a grand total of 1,278,842,363 profile pictures on a single page.

The Faces of Facebook screenshot

The Faces of Facebook tots up the numbers when you first visit the webpage

At first, the page appears as a mass of multicoloured pixels, but if you hover over one of the myriad dots you can see a number – face number 477,232,830, for example – and click to zoom in on your random selection. This brings the selected images and those around it into much clearer focus and even links directly to the user’s profile, proving the legitimacy of this image collection.

Of course, not every image is a Facebook members’ face, as the creator takes note of the many Leo Messis, Chihuahuas, newborns, Indian gods, Ferraris, manga characters and tourists pushing the Leaning Tower of Pisa populating the site.

The Faces of Facebook was created by creative technologist Natalia Rojas as a personal project in 2014, with help from Peèle Lemos and Alberto Ferrer. Rojas claims the site received more than 7m visits in its first month online.

For those looking to find themselves among the millions, you can log in with your Facebook account and find out your number, or even find your friends. You can even ask to be removed, if the whole thing is a bit disconcerting.

Gigglebit is Siliconrepublic.com’s daily dose of the funny and fantastic in science and tech, to help start your day on a lighter note.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.