Cuil – In Urgent Need of QA?

I love this time of year.

Last week I had Knols to talk about, and this week I’ve got Cuil 🙂 


Cuil, pronounced “Cool” looks pretty cool at first glance.

The colour scheme and design of the User interface (trust me to look at that first!) is way cool.

The results lay-out (hang on a minute …) is also très kool.

But the results … Oy, Vey !

First, you need to know what Cuil are saying about themselves (the colours are Cuil’s, the bold is mine!):

Welcome to Cuil—the world’s biggest search engine. The Internet has grown. We think it’s time search did too.

The Internet has grown exponentially in the last fifteen years but search engines have not kept up—until now. Cuil searches more pages on the Web than anyone else—three times as many as Google and ten times as many as Microsoft.

Rather than rely on superficial popularity metrics, Cuil searches for and ranks pages based on their content and relevance. When we find a page with your keywords, we stay on that page and analyze the rest of its content, its concepts, their inter-relationships and the page’s coherency.

There’s more, but you can read it yourselves.

Or have a look at what some of the 1,170,000 search results for Cuil (on Google, of course – on Cuil itself, there are only 121,578 results!) are saying about Cuil: Danny Sullivan, Rafe Needleman at CNET, TechCrunch, Masterworld, you name it, they are saying it.

Or, let’s have a look for ourselves …

Well, tomorrow is the last day of the Blogging Idol competition, so I just HAD to connect this post to that.

So, here’s the results of my search for “the Blogging Idol”  (without the inverted commas). These results are completely undoctored, this is exactly what happened.

Stage 1 : Search for the Blogging Idol

Ok, sorry folks, looks like is “scrunching” my screen shots rather too much …

You’re going to have to believe me that the number in the right hand corner says 2,280 results.

Now look at the bottom left corner. How many pages of results?   2 !!

Stage 2: Click on the > to move the the next page of results.


You’re going to have to believe me again that the number in the right hand corner NOW says 5,630 results.

Now look at the bottom left corner. How many pages of results?   4 !!

Stage 3: Click on the “3” to move the the next page of results.

What does that say ? (sorry again, folks, I’ll try to get the WordPress people to fix this …)

It says:

“We didn’t find any results for “the blogging idol ”

Some reasons might be…

  • a typo. Please check your spelling.
  • your search includes a term that is very rare. Try to find a more common substitute.
  • too many search terms. Please try fewer terms.

Finally, try to think of different words to describe your search.”

Amazing, isn’t it !!

So, off you go, QA (and SEO?) readers, get your CVs up-to-date, and send them off to , looks like they could use you 🙂

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7 responses to “Cuil – In Urgent Need of QA?

  1. I agree they’ve got some things to fix and some features to implement however it’s a fine product that did a hell of a marketing and they might stand a chance of taking a peace of search industry for themselves.

  2. Dear Toni,
    I have to agree with you on the the marketing.

    But the Jury is still out as to whether it’s a fine product or not.

    It reminds me a bit of the first days of Heathrow’s Terminal 5, where the state-of-the-art systems crashed, 100’s of flights were cancelled, and 10,000’s of bags left orphaned from their owners. They sorted it out in the end, but the fanfare opening turned into a flop.

    In both cases, time will tell whether they are fine products.

  3. I don’t care for it. It’s too complex for me I like the simplicity of Google. Plus, the results aren’t as good for the searches I’ve done.

  4. Pingback: Google Chrome - 3rd time lucky? « Debi’Z Blog

  5. So I went to Cuil and searched for “google chrome”. Zero results for a web browzer. I searched for “Chrome web browzer” and aCuil returned “1” result but didn’t show it to me. Not ready for prime time me thinks.

  6. Breezylee – I do so agree with you.
    As you can see, I was singularly unimpressed with Cuil when I wrote this post, and haven’t found any reason to like it since then.
    Like you, I couldn’t find anything under “Chrome browser” or other similar searches …

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