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Luis von Ahn          

Founder & CEO of reCAPTCHA & Duolingo

Computer scientist Luis von Ahn co-invented the website security program CAPTCHA, or Completely Automated Public Turing test for telling Computers and Humans Apart. He then created reCAPTCHA, which furthered the work of CAPTCHA while assisting in the digitization of books and other archives. He also co-founded Duolingo, a company whose online platform is the world’s most popular way to learn languages.

Born in Guatemala City, Guatemala, von Ahn is the son of two doctors, and he grew up exploring the candy factory owned by his mother’s family. The hands-on experience of trying to understand how the factory’s machinery worked fostered his curiosity, and he has said that receiving a Commodore 64 personal computer at age 8 set him on his career path.

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