New SharePoint Web Part Aggregates Twitter, RSS

2 minute read
David Roe avatar

A new web part from Virto Software (news, site) has just been released that will enable users to aggregate posts from Twitter and RSS feeds and place them on SharePoint pages all in a single view with a display that can be easily customized.

The new web part is compatible with both SharePoint 2007 and SharePoint 2010 and consists of a single component that can not onlypull information from the user-identified sources, but can also post directly to Twitter and RSS feedswithout having to leave SharePoint .

And with the dust only settling on this release, Virto has said that it is already planning to complete integration with Facebook in a future version, making it possible to get and post information from SharePoint.

Virto And SharePoint

Virto is one of the many companies that have aligned themselves with the fortunes of Microsoft (news, site) and SharePoint in particular.

Since the first web part for SharePoint was released in April last year, Virto has been building and developing web parts for both SharePoint 2007 and SharePoint 2010, with the current line-up consisting of calendars, alerts, collaboration, workflow and administration capabilities for SharePoint users.

Learning Opportunities

This is not the first time it has developed extended communication capabilities to SharePoint. Last September it extended SharePoint 2007’s workflow capabilities by offering new features including:

  • Messaging: Send a tweet to Twitter
  • SMS and Instant Messaging: Send messages to GTalk, Jabber or Miranda
  • Email: Add list item or HTTP attachment to your email and receive email

SharePoint Aggregators

This time around though, users will be able to display Twitter and RSS information in a single display on SharePoint pages.


Virto SharePoint Twitter/RSS display

With support for the OATH protocol for Twitter -- meaning it does not store users’ Twitter account details or passwords -- the new web part enables administrators determine who will be able to use the aggregatoror not.

Users can also customize the look of the display screen using XSL and CSS as well as add to the lists of information sources that they wish to receive data from.Features include:

  • Support for RSS 1.0, RSS 2.0 and ATOM feeds
  • Single view information aggregation
  • Real time feed update using AJAX
  • Native Twitter API support and Twitter status control from SharePoint
  • Administrator-defined access permissions

The new web part is already available from Vitro and costs US$ 295 per licence/server. Virto is also planning to add support for approvals workflows in upcoming versions that will enable users develop ‘approve’ or 'disapprove' standards for the posts.