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Google gives users control over their searchable life

Its a fact that you've searched for your own name on Google. Likely, you've done it way more than once or twice.

And chances are that the hits included something you didn't like very much — a picture from a particularly bad hair day or a drunken party, perhaps, or maybe that unfortunate incident that was reported in the crime blotter. Google Inc. now is trying to give you a way to control your life — well, at least your life on Google.

Brian Stoler, a Google software engineer, wrote in a blog post this afternoon that the Google search engine is starting to offer profile results at the bottom of U.S. name-query search pages. They offer up shortened versions of user-created Google profiles and a link to the full profiles.

“When searching for yourself to see what others would find, results can be varied and aren't always what you want people to see,” said Stoler. We want to make that better and give you more of a voice.”

Don't have a Google profile? Stoler says that can be easily rectified.

“Just search for [me] and follow the instructions at the top of the page to create one,” he added. “In just a few minutes, you can create a public profile that represents you and that appears when people search for your name on Google.”

Just yesterday, Google released two new tools designed to make it easier for users to find the information — or images — they're looking for. Both of the new tools — Google News Timeline and Image Search — come out of Google Labs.

In the past several months, Google has focused on adding new features and tools to its products.

In February, the company unveiled an upgrade to Google Maps that allows people to track the exact location of friends or family through their mobile devices. The new feature, Google Latitude, not only shows the location of friends, but it can also be used to contact them via SMS, Google Talk or Gmail.

A week later, Google announced that its Gmail software can show the location of e-mail writers.

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