Warning, this post is speculative, but I think all signs point to what I am about to describe. Google may be about to launch a search tool that uses the same algorithms used way back in 2001. Why would they do this? I think it's probably the best way for them to show how far search technology has come in 7 years.
Now why do I think they are about to do this? Google just changed their robots.txt file -- the file that webmasters use to tell robots which parts of their website should or shouldn't be indexed by search engines. The newly added entry prevents search engines from indexing the url "www.google.com/search2001/query" -- currently still unavailable.
In addition to that entry, Google also recently added an entry for "/newspapers" which leads me to believe they may be trying to index newspapers like they have been doing with books -- that could be interesting too.