TA McCann Leads GIST Into The Market

Meet T.A. McCann, the CEO of GIST.  Recently, T.A. and Gist have been featured across the media as the company beta launched its web-based service that connects your inbox to the web.  MeetKendall called GIST “Linkedin on Steroids“. 

Basically, GIST scours the internet for information about your contacts and their companies and brings it back in a manageable format.  With GIST, you can sort by importance of contacts or most recent news.  Cool idea.  Robert Scoble, tweeted, “This is awesome!  One of the coolest things I’ve seen lately.” Click on the photo above to see their discussion on Kyte.TV.  Also, here is the FastCompany.TV interview as well. 

GIST is backed by Paul Allen’s Vulcan Ventures.  So, how did T.A. get involved?  He had been a consultant with Vulcan Capital since 2006.  Prior to that, he was also Entrepreneur In Residence (EIM) at Polaris Partners from 2004-2006.  He was a founder at Helpshare, an intelligent knowledge sharing solution for web sites and corporations, and Jump2Go Interactive, an interactive solution that helped Radio and broadcast industry to connect more deeply with customers and advertisers.

Interestingly, HelpShare was an idea pitched to Linkedin prior to its launch of Linkedin Answers, a somewhat similiar concept.  That’s probably another story.

Anyway, T.A. is obviously well-known and well-respected in the Seattle startup community.  He is a tall, lanky man with relentless energy.  Listen carefully because he talks fast. But his insights are attention-grabbing and provocative. He is passionate about online communities and his business.  

We’ve worked together on a few one-off projects.  I know he is a dedicated family man and an avid outdoorsman.  I remember how excited he was at having a sail boat on Second Life.  I guess we’re all geeks.

Now, if you had loaded T.A. as a contact in GIST, some of these insights on him as the CEO and the man would be delivered to your computer automatically.  How about that? Yeah, aggregating available internet data and making all of it relevant seems pretty powerful.  Imagine when they start including personal social media data as well.