Have you ever rushed into a meeting, not having a chance to do any research on who exactly it is you'll be talking to? I know I have, and it almost always leads to an awkward, forehead-slapping "I should have known that" moment.
Charlie is a free website and iOS app that wants to help eliminate those awkward moments by surfacing information about meeting attendees.
Not only does it pull basic facts about those you're meeting with, but also for the company they work for. If the company recently celebrated winning an award on its Twitter feed, Charlie will make sure to point it out to you.
Alerts arrive one hour before the meeting in your inbox for quick access. Naturally it only works if the meeting invite contains contact information for that person. In other words, adding "Meeting at 2" won't do you, nor the attendees, much good.
Charlie isn't the first app of its kind, and it very likely won't be the last. But in the last two weeks of using it, I've found it to do a good job at surfacing personal (but not too personal) information that makes it easier to find a common bond with whoever I've had a meeting with.
You can sign up for Charlie at Charlieapp.com, or download the iOS app here.