File this one under “Technology that knows you better than you know yourself.”
Immersion, a free new Web tool from the smarties at M.I.T., securely scans your email, then derives amazing discoveries about how you know the various people in your life.
Seriously, not even your BFF since birth understands your social connections this well.
Here’s how it works: Once you grant Immersion secure access to your Gmail, Yahoo or Outlook account, it will scan every email you’ve ever sent or received since the beginning of time and then create a visual map of all the people you communicate with and how often.
So you might see your very best friend in a big circle in the center. Next to her will be little nodes leading to all the pals you have in common. Then there might be a separate web leading to your book club, another to your college friends and another two (or six) to all of your bad-idea exes. (Dear Alfonso, we regret nothing.)
You can click on any person to see how many times you’ve corresponded with them, and Immersion even knows who introduced the two of you in the first place.
Consider it today’s official Internet time waster. You’re welcome.