Gabriel Weinberg is creator of duckduckgo.com, a search engine that does not track users’ history and information.
Google processes billions of searches a day. DuckDuckGo processes millions.
“The reality in the United States is that we still really only have two search engines — Google and Bing,” said Danny Sullivan, editor of SearchEngineLand.com. “I think it’s entirely unlikely that DuckDuckGo is gonna put Google on its back and crush it.”
But what if that’s not really Weinberg’s goal?
He’s no Zuckerberg
Weinberg was born in the District but grew up near Atlanta in a tight-knit family. His father is a physician and infectious-disease specialist. His mother makes clothes and art, and Weinberg’s first job as a hacker — a child hacker — was building his mom a program to process orders online. He was not a complete dork. In middle and high school, he played soccer and tennis. He was, like most teens, a bit aloof. He spent a lot of time messing around with computers, and he excelled in his science classes, particularly physics. He studied physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology but didn’t want to pursue it in graduate school. As happens with college kids, one thing led to another, and eventually he wound up programming.