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Not sure if it's a lot to ask, but I'll consider it a killer app if DDG can let user opt which map source to choose from? e.g. Some may prefer Google, and some may prefer openstreetmap?

Just a thought.




They at least let you choose which one to use for directions. Apple Maps is the default as far as I can tell, but if you go to the settings page on DDG [1] and scroll down to Directions Source, you can change to Bing, Google, HERE, and OpenStreetMap. However, this only affects what it directs you to when you click "Get Directions" and you can't change the actual map source that's embedded or used for location results, although I believe they used to let you change that. It's a bummer that it was changed and that their Help page still refers to that feature [2].

[1] https://duckduckgo.com/settings

[2] https://help.duckduckgo.com/duckduckgo-help-pages/features/m...


They can't use Google Maps, because Google's Terms of Service for Maps explicitly prohibits using them alongside other map data providers:

> (e) No Use With Non-Google Maps. Customer will not use the Google Maps Core Services in a Customer Application that contains a non-Google map. For example, Customer will not (i) display Places listings on a non-Google map, or (ii) display Street View imagery and non-Google maps in the same Customer Application.

-- https://cloud.google.com/maps-platform/terms/

As far as OSM goes, Apple Maps is based heavily on OSM data. (I've submitted corrections to OSM and seen the changes propagate to Apple Maps.) So I don't see much point in supporting two different services which are that closely related.


Just to add on Apple using OSM, Apple actually uses a mixture of its own data, OSM, TomTom, and other geodata brokers. However from what I understand, Apple maps uses the others as a fallback when its own data doesn't cover a specific area (TomTom more than the others) and as Apple has been building up its own data, it will use the other sources less and less. Building up their own data has been a relatively recent endeavor though and it will probably take awhile before those other sources are rarely relied upon or dropped altogether.

Apple does make some contributions back to OSM though for submitted corrections in areas that use OSM as a fallback, IIRC. Apple Maps unfortunately doesn't do a great job of mixing those results though and only uses them as "fallbacks". It's why some areas have poorer quality even compared to OSM (such as Germany mentioned in another comment) because they're strictly using their own data instead of using OSM, et al. to fill in the gaps.


Pretty sure you can forget about DDG supporting Google. The whole point of DDG is privacy. Not sure how they could use Google and still keep your location information private?


They do have the !g option in their search though. If you aren't happy with the results, append your string with !g and it will send you to google results. You do lose the privacy layer though.

From a purely privacy standpoint this isn't much different.

There are a ton of other bang options here:

https://duckduckgo.com/bang?


If you want Google Maps then you can use !gmap.


I was under the impression that a !g search was somehow anonymized. Was that just wishful thinking?


It's just a redirect, unfortunately. It simply formats your search to a Google URL query string and redirects you there meaning that it's the same thing as typing it into Google and hitting search. Startpage would be the better option since it uses Google's search anonymously as DDG does for Bing/Oath. You can use !s for Startpage instead of !g for Google. Same results (minus personalized results) as Google, but with the privacy you're looking for.


It surprises me how many people think this. I'm not sure where it comes from. All it does is redirect you to Google.

So `!g hello world` just redirects to `https://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=hello%20world`

I'm can't see how that could possibly be more anonymized then just going to google.com yourself.


> I'm not sure where it comes from

I guess because it makes zero sense the way it is. What's the point? Might as well have gone to Google directly. And what DDG user would ever want to be redirected to Google? They're using DDG for a reason (and for 99%, it isn't the search engine quality). It just makes no sense.

> I'm [sic] can't see how that could possibly be more anonymized then [sic] just going to google.com yourself.

DDG could proxy the traffic the way startpage does.


> I guess because it makes zero sense the way it is. What's the point?

There are over 10.000 different bang shortcuts. They’re very valuable for several reasons, especially if you make DDG your default search engine. “Denmark !w” will take you to Denmark’s Wikipedia page, saving you the time and bandwidth it would take to click on the link through the DDG/Google result. Similarly, you can search “hello !gtda”; and sure, for short translation queries then you could also just type “hello danish” in Google, but try doing that with an entire paragraph. You could also search “duckduckgo !gandi” to see available duckduckgo domains on Gandi (or whichever domain registrar you prefer).

> And what DDG user would ever want to be redirected to Google? They're using DDG for a reason (and for 99%, it isn't the search engine quality). It just makes no sense.

DDG users aren’t (or at least they shouldn’t) append !g to all their searches.. it should only be used as a last resort (and even then they should still be using !s instead of !g). DDG’s primary selling point is privacy, but even if they were just as evil as Google (and there were no other privacy-friendly alternative available) then I’d still be using DDG as my default search engine thanks to the bang shortcuts.

> DDG could proxy the traffic the way startpage does.

That would defeat the purpose of the bang shortcuts, which is to take you to the search results on other sites. Besides, they already offer this through !s.


To directly answer your question, !g _used_ to take you to encrypted.google.com, but Google eliminated it and now it takes you to the general search results page.

Use !s for Startpage instead; it proxies google's results.


Definitely wishful thinking, use !s instead.

The bang shortcuts just take you to the other websites.. sure, you gain a few things, like Google not knowing what you typed to arrive at the final search, typing speed, etc. but DDG can’t really do anything to protect your privacy once you’ve ended up at google.com.


Not from my reading of the site I linked:

Remember, though, because your search is actually taking place on that other site, you are subject to that site’s policies, including its data collection practices.

It's possible the strip some information in the transfer but not everything?


I had the same expectation of them proxying my query. Imagine my surprise when I first tried that oft-mentioned feature and landed on the great tracker.


DDG already "supports" google via !g searches


Which are explicitly required to be non-private.

Users know this and are cautioned, explicitly against using it for that very reason.

Now if you don't care that google knows your information, then yeah, just use google maps. But a user must be at DDG for some reason right? And that reason is as likely to be privacy as it is not. So if you're at DDG for privacy, why ask for all google information?



"Remember, though, because your search is actually taking place on that other site, you are subject to that site’s policies, including its data collection practices."

A better alternative would be !s which redirects your search through Startpage.


They could do what startpage does and cache google results; if something isn't cached, do a pass-through so Google does still get the search but doesn't get the user's specific information


No, you don't get to choose. You have to be privacy first which narrows it down to DDG and Apple. Deal with it.


It already has this. It's in search settings.


Nope, that is just the 'Directions Source'. So basically the button below an embedded map to let you calculate the route to the destination.

I don't know which language you use, but at least the German translation is kinda wrong since it is called 'Kartensystem' which you could translate as 'Karten = Maps' and 'System = System' and it certainly is not the general map system you select, but just the one being used for calculating routes/directions. Sadly :-/




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