Luis von Ahn, from CAPTCHA to Duolingo

Luis von Ahn, from CAPTCHA to Duolingo

Three are always things that change the face of technology for ever and some of them are happening based on security concerns. Three of the main things that comes to our mind when we are talking about authentication are username, password and those little set of scramble words or digits we have to enter to prove that we are not robots. These things are called CAPTCHA and they have being made by a man named Luis von Ahn which is a great entrepreneur and has multiple founded companies under his belt. So today we will take a look at his life and the path he took in order to becoming a great entrepreneur.

Luis von Ahn, and a German family in Guatemala

Luis von Ahn was born in Guatemala back in 1978. His family had German origins and had moved to this part of the world for a new adventure. He rose in a fairly wealthy family because his parents had a candy factory and since he had access to all kind of new things as a child.

At 1996, he finished his school studies in American school in Guatemala and soon after joined Duke University to get his Bachelor degree in mathematics science in 2000 but he did not stop learning on academic level and decided to go for PHD. Finally he got his PHD from Carnegie Mellon University in 2005 and started teaching in the same University a year later.

reCAPTCHA, Duolingo and beyond

He was a professor in computer science and this gave him a great chance to make interesting things in this field and that lead him to invent CAPTCHA system based on a research approach. Actually he did his first steps on this new authentication checking system back when he was in college and in 2000, he and his friend named Manuel Blum started to build the first corner stone for CAPTCHA system.

Luis von Ahn continued his progress and improved this new system and made a new and more advanced model of in called reCAPTCHA back in 2007 which is widely accepted all over the world today.  reCAPTCHA was sold to Google after its amazing success and Luis von Ahn  needed a new hobby so from 2014, he started his new adventure named Duolingo. This system is a great tool to learn new languages and he is CEO of Doulingo as today.

He was selected as person of year in Guatemala and picked as one of the most innovative people alive in the list of top 100 by fast company. He even was the youngest innovator with only 35 then. His latest achievement is getting the award for dedication to improving the world through technology from Lemelson-MIT and this means that even in 2018, they still know that he can improve the world by his dedication and knowledge.

If you think that there is a key part of his life that we have missed then please let us know by leaving a comment down below and we will be happy to add it to our article.

5/5 (1 Review)


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here