One thing I love about S&W is the saving throw mechanic. Instead of a huge list of various types of saves, you just have one general saving throw. This means that you can have players roll STR saves, DEX saves, INT saves, and CHA saves. Need to see if your party's M-U remembers som ancient text? Have him make an INT save to see if he can recall the relevant information.
For my skill system, I'm thinking that any time a skill's usage comes into question, the player would roll a saving throw tied to the ability that would best suite the situation, and if they have a skill that would help, they would get a flat +2 to that save.
Each character would start out with 3 skills, plus their INT modifier. Being a fan of Unknown Armies' skill system, where players just make up whatever skills they want (so long as the GM permits), I'll probably do that, though no combat skills (like, Longsword use or Shield use) would be allowed.
So, for example, you could have a fighter who has skills for Gambling, Interrogating, and maybe Finding Good Taverns. When the fighter comes to a new city, he could roll a Charisma Save and add +2 for Finding Good Taverns.
This would keep things fairly rules-light, and allow individual players to make their characters unique outside of how they role-play them. Personally, I don't mind having two fighters in my group who, mechanically, are very similar, but having played mostly with gamers who are used to newer games, it might help me gain some ground with my groups.