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Facebook to open engineering office in Seattle

The company has also enlisted iLike co-founder Hadi Partovi, who is based in Seattle, to help recruit a team of engineers.

Hello, Seattle CC: Flickr user bensonkua

Facebook on Wednesday announced that it will open an office in Seattle to build up a new team of engineers as the social network faces continued rapid growth. It'll be open sometime this summer, engineering manager Ari Steinberg wrote in a post on the Facebook blog; a Seattle jobs page on Facebook says that the office will be located downtown.

"As we grow to meet these challenges, we need to continue to attract the smartest, most talented technologists on the Internet," Steinberg's post read. "Seattle has a strong history of innovation and is home to thousands of talented technical people who we want to help us solve the challenges of designing and building the next generation of Facebook."

While Seattle hasn't been the most high-profile hub of technology start-ups in the Web 2.0 era, the region is still the home to massive companies like Microsoft, which has a stake in Facebook thanks to a 2007 investment, and Amazon.

Additionally, Facebook announced Wednesday that it has hired Hadi Partovi, the Seattle-based co-founder of music service iLike--which eventually sold to MySpace--as an advisor to help recruit local engineers.

Currently, Facebook has more than 400 million members total, and aims to expand significantly across the Web thanks to its new Open Graph API; right now, it has one engineer on its payroll for every million active users on its site. Steinberg's post explained that "with this opportunity comes the great responsibility and challenges of keeping the service fast and reliable, at an absolutely enormous scale." Indeed, earlier on Wednesday Facebook experienced a minor privacy scandal when a bug in its code exposed some otherwise private user data.

Facebook was originally founded in Cambridge, Mass., when CEO Mark Zuckerberg was an undergraduate at Harvard, but is now headquartered in Palo Alto, Calif.