Internet Anthropologist Think Tank: The biggest search engine ?

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    Friday, August 01, 2008

    The biggest search engine ?

    Menlo Park based Cuil will launch later this evening with an index of 120 billion web pages, making them arguably the most comprehensive search engine on the web (Google doesn’t disclose the size of their index, although they claim to know about a trillion unique web pages) (Update: see our very early testing here). They’ve also dropped one of the “l’s” from their name - previously the company was “Cuill.” Either way, it’s pronounced “cool.”

    The super-stealth search project was founded by highly respected search experts. Husband and wife team Tom Costello (CEO) and Anna Patterson (VP Engineering) were joined by Russell Power. Patterson and Power are also ex-Google employees, and the company has been the subject of intense speculation over the last couple of years.

    Much of the secret sauce of Cuil is in the way they index the web and handle actual queries by users. Both are costly to scale, and Cuil claims to have found a way to massively reduce those costs. That allows them to run the search engine a lot cheaper, even at Google-scale should it ever reach that point. By some estimates, Google spends a billion dollars a year to run the back end infrastructure of it’s search business.


    BACKGROUNDER: Billions of pages a day.



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