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An answer for the “So what do you do?” question

Published to Blog on 25 Jun 2009

I get asked this question a lot from friends and family, I’m sure we all do. It’s easy to explain to my geeky friends, not so easy to explain to my friends and family who aren’t so geeky. It usually goes something like this

Me: “I work for Telligent Systems, we build community collaboration tools.”


Me: “We build forums, blogs, wikis, … that kind of stuff.”


Me: “Companies like Dell, Intel, Microsoft run our software for a lot of their customer community sites.”


Me: “You ever used MySpace forums? That’s us.”

Them: “Oh, okay. That’s cool, so what do you do?”

Me: <sigh, I know this is going nowhere fast> “I’m a programmer.”

Over most of the last year I’ve worked on a product called Telligent Analytics, formerly called Harvest. It’s a package that mines a Telligent Community site’s information and shows all kinds of cool stuff. The last version, Harvest 2, was a pretty good product. But we’ve been adding a lot of great features since November and I think we’ve put together a great product.

We’ve been really tight lipped over the past few months about the new features in Telligent Analytics and I’ve felt like I was going to explode because I really wanted to tell people about the great stuff we’ve been adding: Social Network Analysis (showing how people interconnect and rank inside the community), Topic Detection and Analysis (showing what things people are talking about), Sentiment Analyis (showing how people feel about the things they are saying), Web Analytics (showing the page views, logins, unique visitors and all the things people expect from “web tracking”), extending the monitoring of your keywords to outside your community (looking for the topics that you care about in key sites and services on the internet), and much more.

Did I lose you somewhere in the above paragraph? I hope not, but if so just check this video out and it should help. Rob Howard, our founder and CTO, did a brief interview and demo of Telligent Analytics at the recent Enterprise 2.0 conference (about 15 minutes). This will help you see and understand what I’ve been working on.  I think I’m going to try to load this video to my phone and when someone asks “So, what do you do?” I’ll just hand it to them.


[You can also see the video here:]

I’ll be talking a lot more about all of these awesome Telligent Analytics features over the coming months – expect lots of demos, insider information, how-to customize, etc.

Don’t worry if you still didn’t “get it”, Becki. I’ll explain it to you later.

Dan Hounshell
Web geek, nerd, amateur maker. Likes: apis, node, motorcycles, sports, chickens, watches, food, Nashville, Savannah, Cincinnati and family.
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