Cuil, pronounced cool, was cooked up by some former Google engineers:
Cuil had kept a low profile while Patterson, her husband, Tom Costello, and two other former Google engineers – Russell Power and Louis Monier – searched for better ways to search.
Now, it’s boasting time.
For starters, Cuil’s search index spans 120 billion Web pages.
Patterson believes that’s at least three times the size of Google’s index, although there is no way to know for certain. Google stopped publicly quantifying its index’s breadth nearly three years ago when the catalog spanned 8.2 billion Web pages.
Cuil won’t divulge the formula it has developed to cover a wider swath of the Web with far fewer computers than Google. And Google isn’t ceding the point: Spokeswoman Katie Watson said her company still believes its index is the largest.
I’m still running a few test queries. I think they have some interesting interface ideas but, like others, I fail to see Google-beating relevancy. Still, it’s worth keeping an eye on.