Modern Makers #20


Modern Makers is a weekly newsletter where I share with you a selection of the best available content about no-code and productivity tools. I hope this content will help you grow your business, launch your project or succeed in your career.

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Hi makers,

This week in the agenda:

📚 The book of the week: The Psychology of Money

💰 A $207M Series C and a $2B valuation for Unqork

🛠️ Softr announced a new native integration with Airtable

💻 G Suite is now Google Workspace


📚 Book of the week

The Psychology of Money - Timeless lessons on wealth, greed, and happiness

Author: Morgan Housel

Release date: September 2020

My key lessons / takeaways:

  1. In a hyper-connected world, the competition for "intellectual" jobs (consultants, journalists, developers, accountants, etc.) is only increasing (even more so since this year 2020 marked by Covid). More and more jobs and fields will suffer from these same effects in the future, in line with Marc Andreesen's famous prediction "Software is eating the world". According to Morgan, soft skills such as communication or empathy would therefore be a way to stand out from the crowd. So is flexibility. Flexibility is the ability to refuse a job, to choose your next challenge, to wait for the right moment to bet on the right opportunity or the right investment. And you will have flexibility if you have enough money set aside (and money accessible at any time, preventing you from having to sell your money invested in the stock market for example). Save as much as you can

  2. The role of parents, your childhood education and your environment have an extremely important impact on your relationship to money and investment. Morgan's advice is to don’t judge others too quickly and easily (as well as yourself). There are plenty of factor that can explain success. And not only just hard work. Similarly, poverty does not necessarily imply laziness

  3. Have the right mindset: optimistic about the future but paranoid about anything that may prevent you from reaching that future

  4. Don't neglect the share of luck and risk in life and in financial investment. Your goal should be to become antifragile (Nassim Nicholas Taleb) and manage your finances in such a way that a bad investment cannot destroy you and instead leaves you the possibility of continuing to play, waiting for the stars to align for you

I also really liked the format: 20 chapters, 20 ideas, straight to the point. I highly recommend reading this book. Do not hesitate to send me your feedback! You can also follow Morgan Housel on Twitter.

Other content I've consumed this week :

  • Why I never learnt to code, and why I'm learning now by Aron Korenblit - in his latest newsletter, Aron (an Airtable expert) explains why he never really managed to learn to code and why mastering no-code tools such as Airtable and Webflow now makes him want to try to learn Javascript again. I think that many no-coders also have this desire

  • A brief history of software automation by Andrew Davison - a retrospective of different automation tools over time, from Yahoo Pipes to Zapier, IFTTT and Integromat

  • The Observer Effect - Daniel Ek - a lengthy interview with Daniel Ek, founder and CEO of Spotify, where he answers questions about his routines and habits, time management, meetings at Spotify, Swedish culture, becoming a parent and more

💰 Funding

Unqork closed this week a $207M Series C that values the New York company at $2 billion. Unqork is a platform that allows to create applications via a visual interface and without having to type a single line of code.

Unqork’s customers are large enterprises in the insurance, health, education or finance sectors (Goldman Sachs is among its customers). In other words, it’s fair to assume I might never get the chance to try this tool. It is nevertheless interesting in my opinion to mention this type of news which really help to give more credibility to the no-code movement and to the trends that we have been observing for many months now. It is hard to know exactly what Unqork offers but it is clear that their solution solves real problems for a large number of companies as its ARR (Annual Recurring Revenue) continues to double every year for the last three years. The company has recently opened an EMEA office in London to keep growing his revenue outside of the United States.

🧰 Product

Softr (a no-code website builder that was launched just four months ago) has just announced the launch of a new feature that now allows you to create web-apps. Thanks to a native integration with Airtable, you can now use Airtable as the database for your application and Softr for the visual interface.

The first four templates are already available and allow you to easily create a job ad site, a directory of online courses or a list of restaurants for example. Softr also offers a video tutorial explaining how to create a job board on Softr with an Airtable database. On paper, this is a direct competitor to Pory, another tool that was also launched just a few months ago.

As part of this important launch for Softr, early adopters can benefit from a lifetime discount on the Maker plan ($25 per month instead of $45).

Try Softr

Google has decided to rebrand its famous G Suite which is now Google Workspace. It gathers all Google's productivity apps, including Gmail, Calendar, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides and Google Meet.

For the occasion, Google also developed a new brand identity with a new design for icons that had become almost iconic. Everyone will have their own opinion on the success or failure of this new design. On the first row, the old icons of Gmail, Calendar, Drive, Docs and Meet. On the second row, the new versions that will be offered in Google Workspace :

Personally, I find these new icons pretty ugly, but that’s just my humble opinion.

In addition to this rebranding, Google is also emphasizing its willingness to connect these different tools even more to each other in order to minimize friction and the need to open new tabs for example (the integration of Meet within Gmail in the past is a good example of this). Google wants to launch new features in a few weeks time that will allow to create a collaborative document with the participants of a chat group or to launch a video call from a presentation.

Zaps from Zapier are now shareable. With a single click, it is possible to create a public link to give access to your Zap template to a colleague, a friend or a potential customer for example. In addition to this public link creation feature, you can also edit the page dedicated to your Zap :

  • change the title of your Zap

  • add a description for each step of your Zap, very useful to give more context and details

  • add a global description for your Zap (what are the steps, what are the problems it solves, what is the result obtained after the implementation of this automation etc)

A feature that should therefore further accelerate the organic and viral growth of Zapier, which in just a few years has become an almost indispensable tool in the stack of all no-coders.

For those interested in learning more about this new feature, a webinar will be held on Thursday, October 29th.

Share your Zaps

📦 In other news

That’s all for this week. If you like the content, don't hesitate to share it with your friends or colleagues.

I also invite you to send me your feedback on this content by leaving a comment below.

Have a great week,


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