In the real world, meaning what John Q views and cares about, YES. As long as the page offers relevant content to their search, who cares?
However, all of the major search engines, including Google, like people to think that the answer is NO. Google says in their webmaster guidelines that you should not think about search engines when designing your pages. That you should not cloak. That you should not add extra information for the benefit of improving your rankings.
Yet in this case, Google did just that. They modified their titles to influence their rankings, whether it was for their internal search or the search engine results displayed in Google proper.
Google is always making comments about how their technology is so great; that it doesn't need to depend on forced input to rank pages. That their algos can find the information without someone having to input meta data in order to figure out what the page is about. This proves that what they preach is fluff.
Hmmm let's look at Google's Search Appliance Page:
100 variables. So they need to stuff some keywords in the title to make those pages better because 100 variables can't figure out that the pages are relevant with out stuffing keywords in the title?
Let's read that again folks :)
Google requires no labor-intensive tweaking or configuration
This mishap further shows me, besides their flawed search engine results, that Google's technology is not what they make it to be in their product specs.