More and more, we're seeing startups tap into the massive amount of data that's housed in our email inboxes. Many of these, like Rapportive and AwayFind, are built around helping your more effectively manage and communicate with your contacts. But what if you just want to get a quick visualization of your Email history without having to set anything up? A new Chrome extension called Graph Your Inbox will let you do just that. You can download the extension from the Chrome directory right here.
The extension is simple yet powerful: it runs a search on your Gmail inbox for whatever query you want, then plots it over time in an attractive graph (you can compare multiple queries at the same time). In addition to basic keyword searches, you can also run more advanced queries, like "from:firstname.lastname@example.org" or "label:Important". Even if you can't think of an especially productive way to put this data to work, it's still fun to watch as, say, the number of emails you've received from Facebook has risen over the years.
Of course, whenever email is involved privacy is a big concern. Fortunately Graph Your Inbox says it does all of its processing locally, without accessing your data. From the site:
Note: We take your privacy extremely seriously. This extension does not save any personal information and does not send any personal information to any server. It does not request or record your email password. This extension does not modify the Gmail website or your email in any way.
The application was developed by Bill Zeller, a PhD Candidate at Princeton University.