Salesforce Chatter, a service that embraces Facebook, Twitter and the applications within Force.com.Sharepoint is the big giant in the enterprise collaboration space. Salesforce.com is now in the market with
MindTouch has the potential to compete with the large market players. Today they are announcing MindTouch Cloud, an open-source, SaaS service that integrates business data from any number of sources, including Oracle, Sugar CRM and Salesforce.com.
MindTouch Cloud is meant for a business community to create their own dashboards. It allows users to collaborate with a familiar wiki environment with the capabilities of an enterprise platform.
It's also another example of how enterprise technologies are increasingly designed so the average business user may perform tasks that have traditionally been the domain of the IT department.
What differentiates MindTouch from Sharepoint and other services is its emphasis on the data. Users may collaborate across multiple enterprise systems and web applications.
MindTouch Cloud is an enterprise mashup service. Business critical information can be exported from enterprise systems and mashed up to create reports and build applications. It has the requirements for the enterprise, including authentication using LDAP, single-sign on security. Role management is built into the service with the capability to create new users, roles and groups.
Compare that to Salesforce Chatter and you see some similarities in how applications can be integrated to create an intelligent dashboard environment that fits into an enterprise environment.
MindTouch does need some work on its user interface. But it has all the features that can make it a valuable service for a business looking to build dashboards that can mashup enterprise data and external applications.
This is MindTouch's first cloud computing effort. Pricing starts at $7 per user per month.