A month ago, Polaris Ventures principal Ryan Spoon wrote up a quick blog post looking for a developer with Chrome extension/app experience. He had a pretty simple idea for something to help him with his job. Matt Basta saw the post and created the extension Spoon was looking for almost instantly. Now they’re opening it up for all to use and calling it Polaris Insights.
The straightforward app is very, very slick. You simply visit the website of a company you’re interested in, hit the extension button, and you get an overlay of the CrunchBase, LinkedIn, and Quora data for the company. The CrunchBase column shows you the funding information, the LinkedIn column shows you your connections within the company, and the Quora column shows you some of the Q&A conversations going on about about company.
Yep. Awesome. Mainly because of the CrunchBase usage, obviously. But okay, the other two are pretty cool as well.
“I imagine bloggers, VCs, business development and sales folks will find this super useful,” Spoon says. Indeed. This is my new best friend already.
We have previously written about a Quora extension, but that only shows you notifications. This gives you actual data — and it does so in an interesting way. Rather than using a Quora API (which is still in its infancy), the extension uses Chrome’s ability to pull data in the background from Quora.com and auto-complete the extension with it. And it’s all cached, so Basta jokes that it won’t turn Quora into Tumblr — that is, it shouldn’t cripple the service.
Polaris Insights is Chrome-only for now, but Spoon says that if it’s popular enough, they’ll gladly do a Firefox version.