Gist, the free Web application that lets users manage their personal and professional contacts in Microsoft Outlook, Gmail and Salesforce.com, now lets users access their Facebook activity stream.
Gist aggregates the network information in users’ e-mail inboxes, analyzes the contacts, then ranks and prioritizes the importance of contacts based on the frequency and timing of messaging interaction with the Gist user. Since its launch to public beta last September, Gist has culled profile information from Facebook, as well as Twitter and LinkedIn.
Now Gist is leveraging Facebook Connect to put a bridge between itself and the leading social network, enabling users to access fresh Facebook content, including status updates and other News Feed content from the Gist Web application, Gist iPhone app and Gist Outlook plug-in.
“We’re moving beyond just the fact that you and I are connected on Facebook and tapping more specifically into that stream of content that’s being shared on Facebook, as well as the messages that are going back and forth on Facebook,” Robert Pease, vice president of product marketing, told eWEEK.
Gist also integrated with the Facebook inbox, allowing Gist users to access their Facebook messages in the correspondence widgets on their Gist profile pages. Moreover, the Gist “importance algorithm” will now factor in users’ Facebook inbox activity and allow users to filter their Facebook data stream to only see posts from their most important contacts.
Gist also added the ability to assign tags to each of the connected accounts. For example, users can add a “prospects” tag when they connect their Salesforce.com account to Gist and then the tag filters in the News Reader to see news articles for all of the prospects.
Gist added some cosmetic changes, too.
The Gist Dashboard has been redesigned to make finding news and network articles easier. Gist built auto-complete capability into the sharing tools; when users begin typing, Gist will suggest e-mail address and Twitter user names from users’ Gist profiles.
Users may change the height of the reader by dragging the bottom of the window. Read more about the changes, and learn keyboard shortcuts here on the Gist blog.
Gist CEO T.A. McCann told eWEEK he believes Gist is sitting an intersection between the inbox and the social Web, two spaces that are naturally convergent.
McCann pointed to news that Facebook is building an e-mail inbox, while Google just launched Buzz to delve deep into the social sphere. He noted:
““You really want to bring Web content or social content together with personal content in a rich way and that’s what we’ve been talking about for the last two years. That’s exciting.”“
McCann said Gist is also fortifying its Fragments data aggregation technology, which tracks information that comes into Gist from the Google Social Graph, Twitter, Facebook, news sources, contact databases, connected e-mail accounts and Amazon Wishlists. The company plans to provide users more control over what gets added to their profiles.
Gist, which competes with the likes of Xobni and the new Microsoft Outlook Social Connector, still plans to charge on a monthly basis for premium Gist services in the future.