When people search, we believe they're really looking for answers, as opposed to just links. For many categories of searches (restaurants, game of thrones, code documentation, etc.), there is usually a specialized search engine (e.g. Yelp), content site (e.g. MetroLyrics) or other source (e.g. StackOverflow) that does a better job at actually answering the searches than a general search engine does with just links. Our long-term goal is to get you Instant Answers from these best sources.
To do that, we've developed an open source Instant Answer platform called DuckDuckHack, which allows anyone to propose and develop Instant Answers for DuckDuckGo. On the backend, we have a classification and relevancy engine that selects the best sources for a particular search and displays answers to you in real time, be it for recipes, products, images, and hundreds of other categories.
In fact, DuckDuckGo gets its results from over four hundred sources. These include hundreds of vertical sources delivering niche Instant Answers, DuckDuckBot (our crawler) and crowd-sourced sites (like Wikipedia, stored in our answer indexes). We also of course have more traditional links in the search results, which we also source from a variety of partners, including Oath (formerly Yahoo) and Bing.
We continue to partner with more and more sources to bring you the best Instant Answers from the best sources. Our focus is on synthesizing it all together into a superior search experience.
Partners and Privacy:
, we never share any personal information with any of our partners. The way it works is when we call a partner for information, it is proxied through our servers so it stays completely anonymous. That is, any call to a partner looks to the partner as it is from us and not the user itself, and no user personal information is passed in that process (e.g. their IP address). That way we can build our search result pages using these 100s of partner sources, while still keeping them completely anonymous to you.