Search engine draws fanfare, testers prefer Google

Start-up search engine Cuil claims it offers an index that's three times larger than any other search engine.

Michael Arrington, a blogger at TechCrunch, added that after testing Cuil for multiple search terms, he found it to be an "excellent search engine," but without the depth or relevancy of Google results. Arrington found that a search for "dog" returned 280 million results on Cuil and 498 million on Google.

"It seems pretty clear that Google's index of web pages is significantly larger than Cuil's unless we're randomly choosing the wrong queries," Arrington noted. "And Cuil's ranking isn't as good as Google's based on the pure results returned from both queries."

However, he did note that Cuil excelled in related categories, which return results that were extremely relevant.

"With Google, we've all gotten used to trying a slightly different search to get the refined results we need," Arrington added. "Cuil does a good job of guessing what we'll want next and presents that in the top right widget. That means Cuil saves time for more research based queries."

Stan Schroeder, a blogger at Mashable, also tested the quality of Cuil for multiple searches compared to Google, where he found the newcomer lacking.

"The more I tried, the more I was convinced that Google is, quite simply, a vastly better search engine," he noted. "This is unfair, I know: Cuil is a very new product, and Google has been around for quite a while. No one can create a better search engine than Google, simply because Google does not only search websites, but - through its domination of the market - the entire Web bends to Google's will because every Web site wants to be positioned well on Google."

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Heather Havenstein

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