So a while back I wrote a little knockoff post about Cuil. At the time, lots of buzz was being generated around the new search engine/website’s claim to out-indexing Google. It also launched with a rather interesting take on presenting search results. A little before its time, perhaps. We see a number of the same techniques cropping up on other search sites since.
It has quietly come to light that Google decided to acquire the IP of Cuil (source: Bill Slawski). And while that might seem a fairly straightforward case of riding oneself of competition through acquisition, if you take a look at the patents as filed, there is an awful lot of GUI claims, and very little indication of the indexing muscle that Cuil was so proud to tout. Seems primarily like the patents deal with presentation, and not so much on novel algorithmic process.
And while I find that interesting, it seems since Google has also welcomed back Cuil Co-Founder Anna Lynn Patterson, perhaps the secret sauce is indeed under Google stewardship after all.