The weekly newsletter for busy creators in search of the perfect no/low-code tech stack
Welcome to the fourth issue of App Chat, the newsletter for busy creators in search of the perfect no/low-code tech stack.

In This Issue
  • What is Polywork?
  • Who should consider using it?
  • I'd like to be honest about something
What Is Polywork?
I'd considered writing about Polywork for Issue #3 but I'm glad I waited because they launched on Product Hunt this week (and were the #1 product of the day).
So, what is it?
Polywork describes itself like this:

"Polywork is a social network where you share the unique intersection of what you do and who you are. Meet, discuss, and discover opportunities with your Community."

How I found Polywork
I joined Polywork in June of 2021 after searching for "personal changelog" and finding a blog post by Brian Lovin, a designer at GitHub. At the time, they were still in closed beta and had a waitlist (which means I HAD to have it haha). Now it's available for everyone to join!

What I immediately appreciated about it was their badges:
They provide a much more complete picture of who a person is. It's unlike a lot of other social networks (LinkedIn, for example) where you would list the applications you know how to use, or the skills you have.

I added things like:
• Gen-X
• Punstoppable
• Boy Dad
• Rabbit Hole Explorer

Those 5 things alone would tell you that I'm likely 40+, I enjoy wordplay, I have at least 1 son, I have ADHD and I'm prone to diving deep into topics.

And you can add as many badges as you like (they have over 15,000 to choose from). In essence, it's the polar opposite of a Twitter profile where you have to describe yourself in 160 characters.

In his recent Medium post, Polywork's founder Peter Johnston had this to say:

"Professionals created over 15,000 unique identity badges, which is to this day probably still my favorite part of the product. We were empowering people to express themselves far beyond their job titles. Product Designer? Yes. But also Dog Dad, Vinyl Record Enthusiast, Figma Wizard, Hiker and more."

It appears I'm in good company, enjoying the badges :)
Beyond Badges
Clearly it's more than badges, but that's a large part of how you find people to engage (and possibly collaborate) with. More on the collaboration in a bit.

Like many other social networks, you can add links to things you consider worthy. So, the typical "link in bio" destinations (your website, social profiles, Medium, Substack, Patreon, etc).

Until recently, the collaboration aspect was a little limited.
You could choose from a handful of options like:

• Beta testing new products
• Writing
• Participating in user research
• Content creation
• Partnering on side projects

As part of their Product Hunt launch they've dramatically increased the number of opportunities to over 100. There's even a dedicated page to discover opportunities & find collaborators:
These are where you could essentially create your personal changelog, as Brian had written about.

Here are some things I added shortly after signing up for Polywork:
Posts are similar to highlights, but they allow you to create something that isn't shown on the timeline (as seen above).
Polywork tweeted about it in July:
Who should consider using it?
Honestly, just about anyone who wants something less cringe-y than LinkedIn (while still offering professional opportunities), and/or is looking to collaborate with others.
But what does the word "polywork" mean?

In August of 2021, Forbes wrote an article called The Truth About Polywork: Desire Or Necessity? where they said:

"Those who choose to work multiple jobs out of desire rather than necessity are called polyworkers. According to advocates of this unique workstyle, polywork pros prefer multiple careers. In other words, it’s not about aspiring to a single job in your field. It’s about taking on disparate (but often complementary) professions. Polywork professionals feel insulated from devastating job losses because they always have backups."

From that blurb, you would gather that this essentially describes a lot of creators, makers, indie hackers, startup founders, freelancers.

If you're reading this right now, that probably describes you :)
I'd like to be honest about something
This past week, I was going through a bit of a creative existential crisis.

I'd published 3 issues of App Chat, and recently started a community called NewbLetter where newsletter newbies can get together and learn from each other.

Things had been going well enough. Slow growth for App Chat, but I wasn't doing a whole lot of marketing for it.

I'm not blaming my ADHD, but one of the hallmark attributes of a person with ADHD is they crave novelty. I'll go all in on something, convincing myself that this time is different and this is something I will stick with for the foreseeable future.

Then something else comes along. It's exhausting :(

For App Chat, it may very well be something I continue with. But this past week I just started feeling like I can never really be my whole self online. Everything is about niches, and categories, and squeezing ourselves into boxes.

Cozy little boxes that allow others to know what to expect from us. Being in a small box is a bit suffocating.

Anyone else feeling this, in relation to creating something and trying to be present online?
Well, that's a wrap!
Issue #4 of App Chat is out in the world. I guess I'm still figuring out what this thing looks like.

The plan right now is that I'll be sending these via email every Saturday weekend (as well as publishing on
❤️ Enjoy this newsletter?
Forward to a friend and let them know where they can subscribe (reminder: it's here).

Or, you can reach out on Twitter where my DMs are open.
{{ unsubscribe_link }} | {{ subscriber_preferences_link }} | {{ address }}