179: TZ Interview – Gabriel Weinberg / Blowing Up DuckDuckGo

Justin and Jason talk in depth with Gabriel Weinberg about how he raised $3 million in venture capital for DuckDuckGo and how user growth has turned hockey stick.

7 Comments
  1. Do you guys ever rest? Great episode. Gabriel’s approach to his business is so refreshing to hear – more relaxed than others.

    Really like the duck duck go site, especially the bubble and don’t track landing pages.

  2. Ben Reyes says:

    This could have been the first time Gabriel mentioned the actual size of the round being $3M. I’ve just updated (pending approval) the DuckDuckGo CrunchBase page (http://www.crunchbase.com/company/duck-duck-go). Which I’ve referenced this page and an SEC filing http://sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1532263/000153226311000002/xslFormDX01/primary_doc.xml

  3. Ian Drake says:

    I don’t get a chance to comment often because I listen on the road, but this was another great episode.

    I’ve been using DDG for over a year now and the best part about it is that I can quickly jump into other search engines when I’m not seeing the results I’m looking for.

    Keep up the good work.

  4. Jason says:

    @Ian Drake – Thanks, I’m glad you liked the show. ;) Gabriel is not only a smart guy and a great entrepreneur, but he’s just plain fun to talk to, so it’s always a blast to have him on the show.

  5. The visual image of the Gabriel’s baby bouncing in the chair while skyping with VCs is going to be a classic!!! Thanks for sharing :-)
    This show demonstrates that there is no single path for startups to grow and be successful. Gabriel was talking very methodical steps and controlling the growth very conservatively but ultimately recognized he was “starving” DDG’s success and decided to take action, get funding to get into the next phase.
    All around great story!

  6. Jian says:

    So duckduckgo is kind of like a meta search engine then. Similar to dogpile.com etc.

    It takes a massive amount of resources (servers, etc) to scale a search engine, but the other side of it is that, most stuff on the web are just junk and not worthwhile to store anyway. I imagine that 90% of what Google stores in their giant data centers are just blackhat seo junk content.

    So given this insight, I am building a search engine differently as an experiment from the small. Search is definitely one of the most interesting and useful application these days. Worthwhile for people to explore.

    BTW, I saw the debacle of the volunia search engine hype. It seems to me that social data is just full of noise to be truly useful as data source.

  7. Great interview. It was nice to hear from someone on the east coast become such a success in the tech world. Especially the way he did it – with a family, a baby, skyping across country with VCs, single founder, and staying small.

    Made me laugh, thinking what was going on in the mind of some big wig VC possibly hearing the baby in the bounce seat in the background during the call.

    Great show.

    -Jon