Two Google Work-Arounds

February 12, 2012

We’ve found a couple of useful tips for Google users. The first one I used immediately: MakeUseOf reveals “How to Turn Off Google’s Personal Search Results & Get Back to Enjoying Life.” Like writer Justin Pot and me, you may find Google’s new Personal Search to be more hindrance than help. The write up asks:

Have you ever looked through your Facebook feed and thought to yourself ‘It would be really awesome if all of this useless [stuff] came up when I was searching for something?’ Me neither! Google seems to think differently though, so last week they started flooding everyone’s search results with a bunch of nonsense. Happily they’re not complete idiots – they did provide a way to turn this [stuff] off.

The way is found under the gear in the top right of the Google screen. Click on that, then Search Settings, then, under “Personal results,” select “Do not use personal results.” Click “Save” at the bottom, and you’re back to your old Googling ways.

LifeHacker supplies the next tip, in “How to Sign Up for a Google Account Without Being Forced in to Google+ or Gmail.” Though the GOOG insists that “Your Google Account is more than just Search,” not everyone wants to be railroaded into Google+ or Gmail or to reveal personal information. Writer Melanie Pinola has two solutions. At the time of this writing, you can still use the sign-up old form found here. You can also sign up from other Google services like Calendar and Blogger to avoid the new form. For now, at least.

Google’s fix? Don’t log in to Google. We think this is a clever response and probably not going to prevent online wizards from figuring out quite a bit about a user.

Cynthia Murrell, February 12, 2012

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