Rarely a launch of new service, let alone new search engine get this much expectation and then ridicule. Even badly done search engines are seen as attempts to improve and enhance our experience of the internet and as I said, are rarely ridiculed. However, when ex-Googlers leave search giant and try to one-up it, then fail miserably, seems to inspired blogosphere into ridicule and laughter. It went so far that Yahoo executive created a parody search engine that uses Yahoo BOSS API to demonstrate how easy is to do better then Cuil (that is supposed to be cool).
I would leave some small room that Cuil recovers somehow and produce meaningful results, however at the moment I fail to see how this can be done, route they took, even with better results would be difficult as they don’t make anything new, just trying to improve.
Unrelated I came across one search engine by accident that produces very interesting and very relevant results http://www.ujiko.com/ .
On the topic of cuil, I can imagine founders hiding somewhere in denial over what happened and how they failed miserably and their plans of greatness and riches have evaporated it a course of single day.