So remember that "amazing" new search engine called Cuil that was being thrown around the news the other day? Turns out it sucks. It sucks so bad I'm actually ashamed of myself for believing it might be useful. Here's why:
I tried a search for something uncommon, but specific (after all, that's what a search engine is supposed to help you with, right?) Vestas Wind Systems is a Dutch wind turbine manufacturer that I'm researching now at work, so I figured a useful test search would be one for "vestas annual report." If the first or second hit was their annual report, in my mind, that would be considered successful.
So I tried it with Cuil. I received a spam result for tobacco smoking, a news article from 2003 about Vestas, some insurance provider called Vestas (wrong company), and the "UCPD Annual Report & Crimes Statistics" from 2003, among other useless results. The company's actual annual report was not on the first, second, third, fourth, or fifth page (I gave up after that). Not even a link to their website, in any shape or form, appeared on those pages. In all honestly, I've never seen a worse, more useless set of search results from any search engine in my entire life.
The same search on Google yielded Vestas' 2007 annual report on the first hit. That's it. Can't ask for much better than that.
Do a few more searches on Cuil and you'll see the real problem - spam everywhere. You'd think by now that search engines - especially those that people are investing in right off the bat - would be able to screen and sort out these things. Even a search for "cuil" is littered with spam everywhere. How embarrassing is that?
It's funny because, on their features page, Cuil says that "not everyone feels lucky". With Cuil, it seems, you're just bound to be terribly unlucky, so it's not even worth wasting your time. Go ahead and mark Cuil as dead on arrival.