Facebook has hired the two founders of New York-based startup Daytum, which describes itself as “an elegant and intuitive tool for counting and communicating personal statistics.” Daytum will continue to operate, though its founders Ryan Case and Nicholas Felton will be working full-time in Facebook’s California product design team.
This talent grab could help Facebook offer new options for tracking personal achievements, or allow users to visualize data from their existing Facebook content, such as mentions of keywords in status updates or frequency of correspondence with specific friends.
These “acq-hires” are becoming more frequent for Facebook as it looks to secure talent in areas it sees as important to the service’s future. So far this year it has picked up teams from HTML5-focused Recrec, social recruiting service Pursuit, feature phone app porter Snaptu, and hyper-local mobile advertising startup Rel8tion. It also bought both the team and product from group messaging app Beluga.
Daytum allows users to manually enter data through the web or mobile app such as trips to the gym, films watched, or types of food consumed. Users can set goals and track their own performance. Free accounts let users track a limited number of data points, while a $4 / month subscription gives them unlimited data tracking and more visualization options.
Remembering to enter data can an accomplishment of its own, so users had to be diligent to derive value. Now imagine a similar service but that could automatically track and visualize Facebook behavior such as photo uploads, Places checkins, or wall posts. While there’s no telling exactly what Case and Felton will work on, their expertise could help Facebook increase it’s utility as a diary, personal organizer, or to-do list.