DuckDuckGo launches DuckAssist: an AI search tool that provides instant answers from Wikipedia

Mar 8, 2023

DuckDuckGo has announced an AI-assisted private search option, called DuckAssist. This is not a chatbot, it just answers queries, without following up on the topic.

The popularity of artificial intelligence language models such as ChatGPT, Bing Chat, are rising. Microsoft has already proven how an AI can enhance the quality of search results greatly.  This could be a make-or-break situation for search engines, and Bing may already be several steps ahead of Google. So it does not come as a surprise that DuckDuckGo wants to foray into the market as soon as possible.

How does DuckAssist differ from ChatGPT or Bing Chat

DuckDuckGo has entered the AI chat. Well, not really. You see, DuckAssist is not a chatbot. Even though it is powered by OpenAI and Anthropic's language models, the AI tool does not have conversational capabilities. You ask it something, it gives you the answer using natural language. That's the end of the story.

Let me explain how it works. When you type a query, DuckAsssist will try to find relevant information from Wikipedia. It then provides the answer in a small box on the search results page.

How is this useful than visiting Wikipedia directly? DuckAssist provides a summary of the information that's specific to your question. It's easier to find what you want to rather than reading whole sections of a Wikipedia page.

It is free, does not track you, and the best part is that you don't need to sign up for an account to use it. The search queries are anonymous, the company says your questions are not used to train its AI, or OpenAI's language model. The drawback to this is that the answers can be inaccurate.

How to access DuckAssist from DuckDuckGo

1. Go to

2. Type in a question.

For example: What is Newton's first law?

3. You will see a box that's labeled DuckAssist Beta. It displays a message that reads, "I can check to see if Wikipedia has relevant info on this topic, just ask.".

4. Click the Ask button, and the AI language model will summarize the answer.

DuckDuckGo calls this Instant Answers. It includes annotations by providing links to the sources, in this the Wiki articles that were used to generate the answer from.

How to access DuckAssist from DuckDuckGo

You may not see the box and message described in step 3. This depends on whether DuckAssist recognized the question or not. If it didn't, try a different query. Examples: What are the rules of football? Who founded Apple? DuckDuckGo says that adding the word wiki to your query can also help the AI detect the question and fetch the results.

The announcement from DuckDuckGo's CEO and Founder, Gabriel Weinberg, says that DuckAssist is available in its browser and apps for iOS, Android, Mac, and via browser extensions for Firefox, Chrome and Safari. It is currently only available in English. This seemed to be a server-side feature, so I wanted to see if I could access it on its new Windows browser, and it does.

Weinberg says that this is just the beginning, a first in a series of generative AI-assisted features that the company is working on, and that there are plans to roll out more AI features in the coming months. He explained that his company chose Wikipedia because it is a public resource with a transparent editorial process, which cites sources, and is constantly being updated. DuckDuckGo plans to add more sources to improve the tool. DuckAssist's index is not real-time, it is a few weeks old, though it will be updated in the future.

Depending on how the trial goes, DuckDuckGo will roll out the experience to all users in the coming weeks. There is no waitlist for DuckAssist. Give it a try by framing your queries into a question.

DuckDuckGo launches an AI search tool called DuckAssist
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DuckDuckGo launches an AI search tool called DuckAssist
Say hello to DuckAssist, a privacy-friendly AI search tool from DuckDuckGo, that provides instant answers from Wikipedia
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  1. ECJ said on March 8, 2023 at 8:46 pm

    This is more useful than a chatbot, as it’s coming from an encyclopaedia, rather than a bullshit generator that you never know what’s made up and what’s not.

    1. Anonymous said on March 8, 2023 at 10:54 pm

      “encyclopedia”?? Do you live in a fairy tale?
      Wikipedia is the most biased controlled source of information, it’s complete BS, they write what they want, the same trolls can write anything about anyone, you can’t edit pages if they don’t allow it, and it’s an obvious manipulation tool of information by the ‘agencies’.
      There are trillion examples about it which are really easy to find.

      In fact, how can you trust a ‘encyclopedia’ that is being manipulated by the ADL? one of the most corrupted and BS organizations in history?

      I mean, you probably believe in DuckDuckGo, even if they use Bing API and share information with Microsoft, or how their CEO was selling people’s sensitive information in 2006, or how they have broken privacy everything like when all typed URLs in their Android app would end up in their servers.
      But sure… Wikipedia is the best and should be trusted even if the content is manipulated by anyone, especially corrupted ADL or trolls or people who have never seen the sunlight, can barely get up from a computer chair, but somehow now more about the real world than everyone around.

      What about the donations? like how Wikimedia Foundation donated $13+ million to Tides Foundation, but sure… they don’t have an agenda behind so it is better to have a ChatGPT saying whatever it was programmed to said, than content edited and generated by humans being paid to manipulate information and lie.

      1. ShintoPlasm said on March 10, 2023 at 2:05 pm

        Interesting how you homed in specifically on the ADL, a Jewish organisation… Makes one think about the validity of your conspiracy theories.

      2. Kalmly said on March 9, 2023 at 4:35 pm

        Well said.

      3. ECJ said on March 9, 2023 at 2:32 pm

        Take your dumb conspiracy theories elsewhere.

      4. John G. said on March 10, 2023 at 9:34 am

        Interesting thoughts, there are some questions unsolved here.

    2. Anonymous said on March 8, 2023 at 9:04 pm

      Perhaps. More than likely is will be similar to google home (I use it only because it was a gift!). Google Home answers what it thinks your asked (you feel like hurling it through the windows sometimes). For example, if you ask a question expecting to be told moonrise time, it might explain what the moon is. AI should allow you to correct the misinterpretation (“no, I want the time of moonrise”). DDG’s ‘intelligence’ would require you to ask the question again in another way. You cannot respond and clarify questions which, in theory, increase AI intelligence. DDG search IQ stays locked at 49.

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