5 years using DuckDuckGo

Makzan’s Dispatch 2020 week 18

Hey friend.

I have been using DuckDuckGo as the default search engine for around 5 years.

Roughly 80% of the time I get what I need from DuckDuckGo. Otherwise, I fall back to Google search. Especially when searching with Chinese queries. That’s when DuckDuckGo falls short. 

DuckDuckGo is very useful when I know what I’m searching for. One thing I like using DuckDuckGo is their Bang! commands.

Bang (!) to go to the first search result directly

When I have a specific query string, I use an exclamation mark to directly go to the first result. It is like the “I’m feeling lucky” button in Google search, but directly using in search query.

For example, when searching CSS stuffs in MDN. I can use "clamp css mdn !" to directly go to MDN’s CSS documentation. Or I can search "namedtuple python doc !" to directly go to Python’s namedtuple documentation page. This saves the page loading of search results and time needed to click on the first link.

Bang for WAVE tool

Occasionally I will check accessibility for certain websites. I can simply use "!wave" bang command to turn certain URL into WAVE inspector.

Bang for google search

When I need to fall back to Google search, I can use "!g" to search the query in Google. Or "!gi" to search the query in Google Image. When I need to translate something. I use "!gtchinese" to directly translate that into Chinese, or "!gten" into English.

Links worth sharing

CSS min, max, and clamp

The clamp() CSS function clamps a value between an upper and lower bound. clamp() enables selecting a middle value within a range of values between a defined minimum and maximum. —MDN

Shell tips and tricks

Time is the only real currency we have

Avoiding hiding important nav behind a hamburger icon

Whenever we hide important nav behind a hamburger icon, it will get less attention, and result in less engagement and conversion.

Roam Research: Why I Love It and How I Use It

Roam is an outlining tool that goes beyond outlines with wiki-like cross-referencing.

Code worth sharing

Visualize responsive font-size calculation

font-size: min(max(16px, 4vw), 22px); 

Until next week,
Thomas Mak