Big wigs at Google and IBM have launched a new search engine out of Menlo Park that promises to revolutionize searching on the web. As I write this, the engine claims to have indexed almost 122 billion different websites. It gets its results by ranking pages on content and relevance instead of popularity metrics.
I took a look at the search engine today.
I absolutely love the snazzy format. Instead of boring and unintuitive links with basic lines of text, you get these little paragraph like boxes of text that come complete with a photo or other image. The description of each link gives much more detail than the one liners of other search engines. The results are just plain nice to look at.
Now for the downside. Perhaps it will take some time, but the results I got when I tried Cuil was not anything that I would consider useful or accurate. I did a simple search on my name. Normally, on a website like Google, I am instantly a huge batch of articles and blogs that I have written on the web. I have more than 1,800 blogs for Families.com alone, as well as other articles I have written for magazines.
Cuil returned 4,785 results. Out of those results, the first page included 11 results. The first eight results had nothing to do with me at all. In fact, three of those were obituaries for people who died with the first name of Mary Ann or who were given a service in a St. Mary’s church. The other five didn’t even mention the word “Mary Ann” or “Romans” in any way that I could see. The three that could be linked back to me were the same link repeated, that to an area of Families.com that keeps track of all of the tags ever applied to my blogs. While this may be interesting, it wouldn’t help anyone looking for me or my writing.
One other thing to mention is that it seems as though random images may be generated for some of the results. My results included photos of people I never met and never used as images in my blogs. It also seems to be pulling images from ads that might appear on some of the webpages. For example, on page three I finally get back a relevant result, a link to an actual blog. The image accompanying it is something about the Ghost Whisperer appearing on Larry King Live. The blog is about a useful website for learning about time. And, the link that would take me to the blog isn’t the correct one. It is a proxy link that does not work.
Another link on the same page, for an article I wrote for VegFamily about babies does work. It takes me, however, not to the actual article, but to an index on the VegFamily website that lists articles related to babies and toddlers.
Cuil, you look good on the outside, very sleek, but you have some work to do. I really wanted to like it.
Mary Ann Romans writes about everything related to saving money in the Frugal Blog, technology in the Computing Blog, and creating a home in the Home Blog. Starting June 1st, don’t miss her articles in the Baby Blog. You can read more of her articles by clicking here.