BrokenOut Project Logs

Inspirations & Background

I finally started to use LinkedIn.

I don’t know if anyone else went through the same process as I did. I filled out my profile with careful elaborations on my past deeds, debated the use of every word for at least 3 times, set up my camera and took countless photos and chose a decent looking one to retouch, carefully upload the photo to be put in the best angle and composition…

When it’s all done, I don’t feel relieved, but rather more anxious than ever:

“I look weird smiling like that!”

“Hmmm, this is bad phrasing…”

“Should I even put this here? Is it even an accomplishment?”

I did minor fixes again and again, but really I know it can never be perfect. It is somewhat frustrating. But to be honest, as tired as it is, I am still not going to stop updating my LinkedIn profile. Because, well, I am not that cool to give up the opportunity or say, the possibility to connect professionally with these people that have done great work. I am so afraid of missing out.

This is no new notion, and may not apply to everyone, but social media apps, such as LinkedIn, can be overwhelming because we are constantly trying to display what’s considered our “best selves”. Other apps like Instagram, WeChat Moments, Facebook etc…do that to us as well. There is a tendency for us to compare our lives with those glamorous lives of our friends, families, or even strangers. We sometimes feel the need to put on “masks” on these apps, naturally because we want people to see what we want them to see. These “masks” are not necessarily dishonest, but perhaps incomplete. They are incomplete of our imperfections, fears, crazy ideas and possibly traumatic or simply…boring experiences as humans. As these apps intend to connect, they in a sense distance us, for we ignore our free and creative expressions. We miss the chances to be naked, to be ourselves.

This is why I had my epiphany of this project, BrokenOut, as a juxtaposition for LinkedIn. Instead of LinkedIn, we are BrokenOut, broken out of standards, of expectations, of the roles we constantly play.

What if there is an app where we can be honest, can be bored, can be creative, can be…anything without feeling the need of being watched? Perhaps anonymity can be given…in fact, reinforced. Usernames, though unique, are randomly generated. Maybe you can be John Doe or Princess Consuela Banana-Hammock. In your profile, you can tell some truths…tell how regular your day is, tell how you once again gave up a hobby or even reveal some mental conditions that you might have never told anyone.

I understand there will be problems with anonymity where things can get out of hands, and therefore there will be limitations, particularly in terms of communications between users. There will be no typed text, instead, you have canvases, where you can draw and drawing is the only way to communicate with each other. Creativity is strongly encouraged. Instead of following and followers, you have people that you’re curious about and people that are curious about you. If you are both curious about each other…well, you guys can draw chat!

The app will be built as a web app for now as I am more familiar with web development. And I came up with a line for this app:

BrokenOut, for professional humans.

Brainstorming

BrokenOut, for professional humans.

What makes you more conscious about your life?

Sign up page:

Generate random usernames

First name

Last name

Your username will be : firstname-lastname

Password

Draw your avatar

Profile page:

Tagline

Randomly generated option:

A adj noun who is adj pronoun noun

Things you have been doing (Juxtaposition of Work Experience)

Example:

Date:

Waking up every day

Details: open eyes

Add an influencer who shaped you as you grow up (Juxtaposition of Education)

Influence Date: __ to present

Such as Mom, Dad…

Movies you watch

The books you read

Food that you eat

Music you listen to

People connect with you more if you have any conditions

Conditions (Juxtaposition of Skills)

Depression

Social anxiety

Claustrophobic

Add a condition

Following

People that I’m curious about:

Followers

People who are curious in me:

Message:

You can respond to sent stuff, but only default emojis, not words, because it’s a cruel cruel world

Or doodle an image actually!

Feed:

Fake News

Doodle

Alex Yixuan Xu·
3 min
·
3 cards

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