Five Exciting Low Code Apps to Enable Your Next Start-Up Idea
5 min read

Five Exciting Low Code Apps to Enable Your Next Start-Up Idea

Most start-up ideas never make it past the idea stage. Even worse, most of the time we build for a long time the perfect product before showing it to a user. Learn how you can quickly build your next start-up idea with low-code!
Five Exciting Low Code Apps to Enable Your Next Start-Up Idea

NocoDB (Open Source Airtable Alternative)

Installation Start of NocoDB

I found this cool tool thanks to Philip Vollet who shares a lot of amazing open-source projects on LinkedIn. As mentioned in the headline it is like Airtable and allows you to easily insert, change or delete data.

User Interface of NocoDB on Play With Docker

As a lot of my ideas are around data I particularly like the tool for the following reasons:

  • Combines all the advantages of a traditional database with an intuitive spreadsheet app
  • The easy and intuitive user interface allows customers to easily interact with data (insert, delete, filter, sort)
  • There is a full-blown GraphQL or REST API to integrate with other tools (potential to build further automation)
  • Access can be restricted with roles and permissions
  • Similar to Notion, the tool can present data in a grid view, gallery view, kanban view, and a calendar view

Also a big shout out to o1lab on Discord for adding my killer feature request right away:

Bonus: How to get started in less than 1 Minute?

Go to Play With Docker: And simply run the following command:

docker run -d --name nocodb -p 8080:8080 nocodb/nocodb
Not sure yet, quickly test the app with Play with Docker.

N8N (Extendable workflow automation)

Unfinished but potential interesting workflow for my blogpost.

To me, N8N is Zapier in a visual drag and drop interface. With N8N you can stitch together various APIs and automate some reoccurring tasks. While I have not implemented or tested this app too extensively yet, I am planning to automate some of my blog work with this tool.

Things I like so far about N8N:

  • Tons of pre-built integrations making it easy to connect many different apps
  • It's free/cheap and you can host it yourself easily with docker
  • Despite requiring some basic tech knowledge around APIs you can quickly test and iterate on automations
  • It also seems like you can build some custom functionality with your own AWS Lambda functions

Bonus: How to get started in less than 1 Minute?

Go to Play With Docker: And simply run the following command:

docker run -it --rm --name n8n -p 5678:5678 -v ~/.n8n:/home/node/.n8n n8nio/n8n

AppSmith (Build & self-host internal apps)

A mockup of automating some marketing for content creators.

As a Pythoneur, I primarily develop in Python and just started to learn how to build interactive web apps with Vue3js. AppSmith comes to my rescue and allows me to build and prototype quickly a traditional CRUD (create, read, update, delete) app.

I chose to include AppSmith in this blog post for the following reasons:

  • Intuitive User interface with drag & drop functionality to quickly piece together a UI
  • Great flexibility to connect to different databases or Rest APIs
  • Easy to share and collaborate with other users.

So far the only killer feature I have been missing is a possibility to have a user account registration for B2B or B2C apps.

Super (Build websites with the simplicity of Notion) & Gumroad (Simply sell downloads, books, memberships, and courses)

Gumroads content cretor unbeatable friendly pricing.

I learned about the next two tools through this cool Indie Hackers Podcast Episode where a founder made $280k in Four Weeks. The key to his success was combining creatively and quickly these two tools.

Although I have not used both apps yet, I could imagine creating a shop website very quickly to sell a certain digital product.

I would choose these two for the following reasons:

  • Flat price of $15 per month for Super & Free to get started on Gumroad
  • Most other shop systems are way more complicated to set up and more expensive
  • Super seems quite easy and has some cool integrations to automate some of the reoccurring tasks.

Fail Fast and Build Quickly with Low-Code

A key learning I took from exploring and learning about all these tools is that they are not in conflict with my coding skills.

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In the beginning, I was quite skeptical about what these tools can do that I could not build myself. In fact building things myself, I could build them exactly the way I need them.

Now I see these tools as a leapfrogging opportunity, to build something quickly with little cost. If there is traction, I could always later fine-tune and build it the way I need. Just like other open-source Python libraries they are a great opportunity to solve parts of existing problems.

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For now, these are my favorite five tools. I am certain that more awesome open-source no-code / low-code tools will join this list. If you just get started in entrepreneurship, feel free to check out some of my other posts and resources. Also let me know via LinkedIn, Twitter, or Instagram if I missed any awesome open-source tool.