From virtual game shows to distributed team stand-ups: Coda's May Meetup with Matt Galligan

Recap of the Coda May 2020 meetup with Matt Galligan, VP of Design at Earnest Research
For May 2020's virtual NYC meetup, I had a chance to speak with
, VP of Design at
about the various startups he's co-founded, his passion for distributed teams, Coda docs he's built for work and personal use, and his membership in the two-letter Twitter club. When I first learned about Matt's personal use case, I was particularly excited to see what he had to show (spoiler: it involves

Watch the full replay of the meetup here (Crowdcast replay


Employee competency framework
Matt first used Coda for an employee competency framework at Earnest Research that the HR team originally had in a Google Sheet. When Earnest held an internal hackathon, Matt took the opportunity to transform the Google Sheet into a more usable Coda doc that eliminated multi-tab inconsistencies. The original Google Sheet had a bunch of values that could potentially change, and to update the file required a lot of manual copying/pasting:

Image 2020-05-11 at 1.31.37 PM.png

With the Coda doc, Matt built
to easily filter the different competencies depending on who is looking at the doc. While this is a simple use case of Coda, Matt emphasized Coda’s simplicity to his team while demonstrating that it can replace other document platforms like Confluence and Google Docs:

Image 2020-05-11 at 1.32.04 PM.png

Wrap-ups, not stand-ups
At a high-level, a wrap-up is a stand-up solution for distributed teams—they allow for your team to get work done asynchronously. Wrap-ups don’t require everyone to be available to do the meeting (typical for stand-ups), make hand-offs easier, and memorialized data in a Coda doc.

Here is the summary Matt demoed (code-named Project Burrito internally):

Image 2020-05-11 at 1.39.53 PM.png

Matt is a proponent of distributed teams, but he’s increased his team’s focus on
during the pandemic. His wrap-ups Coda doc is an example of a lightweight solution to documenting work being done on his team without it being lost in a Slack channel.

The gist of the wrap-up
(based off of
) is an entry form filtered to the user who is viewing the doc and a display page that shows all the input from everyone on your distributed team:

Image 2020-05-11 at 1.41.46 PM.png
Entry form for a team member

Image 2020-05-11 at 1.42.34 PM.png
Daily summary view of everyone's wrap-ups

Hosting a virtual game show
For his third use case, Matt and his friend built a virtual game show that has attendees, a host, a sound board, a control room—and sound effects. They also got on the beta for the popular Clubhouse app that doesn't even
, where they found themselves asking questions to
(apparently Naval knows random trivia facts about
). In
Who Wants to be a Hundreadaire
, Matt built a "control room" view for him to use while the game show is happening but his friend (the host) had a "stage" view:

Image 2020-05-11 at 1.51.08 PM.png

Present at or attend a future meetup
If you want to showcase something you've built in Coda for the greater community, feel free to
. Organize your own virtual event with this
template. To RSVP for future meetups, check out our dedicated meetup page which also has content from previous meetups:


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