Why Cuil is no 'Google Crusher'

Dan Internet

A lot of hoopdiedoo today about the new search engine, Cuil.  Well, here’s my personal take on it and why it’s no Google crusher.

Let’s take it from a client standpoint.  Search for “James Dooley” (or even “Jim Dooley“) on Google.  Note the top entries.  Good search engine placement, right?  Now do the same search on Cuil.  Well, that’s…. interesting.  Not only does it not put Jim’s official site as one of the top results, but it finds a page IN his site (his “Biography”) and displays that. Even worse, it decides to associate images with results based NOT on the page result, but based on some unknown formula.  So the James Dooley at Cal-Tech has Jim Dooley’s face on his search result.  Tsk tsk.

Now let’s go a step further and do a common search term.  Say, “scoring sessions“.  Ok, so ScoringSessions.com seems to have a bunch of results there, but why no link to the homepage??  Another search, this time for composer “Michael Giacchino“, brings up some results, but not his actual homepage.  Note the “Chris Tilton and Michael Giacchino record Black…” result.  The photo linked to the article? No idea where that’s from. But it’s not from the article.  Also note the new sidebar that brings up contextually related searches – neat, eh? Unfortunately it ADDS to the search term already used, instead of creating a new search.  So, it’s not like you’re searching anew.

One neat thing is that Cuil seems to know when you get a search that yields no results. It will show you a page with “No Results”, and after a few minutes, if you do the same search again, you’ll get results.  So it’s learning, which is nice – but if I don’t get a result the first time, I’m not likely to wait and try again.

I think I’ll stick with Google for now.