Now you can live in a dorm-like apartment building where neighbours use a work app called Slack to communicate

Startup 2011 Brad Hargreaves General AssemblyBrad Hargreaves, who runs Common, and was previously the founder of a tech school called General Assembly

Slack is a hot San Francisco startup that makes a chat app for the workplace.

Now, it’s coming to a dorm-like apartment building in the trendy Williamsburg neighbourhood of New York so neighbours and roommates can stay in touch with each other more easily, Gothamist reports.

Slack first took off with developers in Silicon Valley, and is also used by a lot of news publications, including Business Insider, as a way to cut down on emails.

It’s most useful for collaborating on a project as it’s happening — which is why it’s so useful for developers and reporters — and one of the best things about it is the way it integrates with dozens of other work programs. So for example, if you type “/giphy” and then a word, it will automatically insert an animated GIF from Giphy. You can drop documents from Google Doc directly into the chat stream. And so forth.

But it’s also a fun place to gossip, schmooze, and show off your wit — kind of like Twitter with a smaller audience, or the old AOL chat rooms (or IRC, which is what it’s based on).

The building that will use Slack is run by Common, a startup that’s pioneering the concept of “coliving,” where people pay a monthly subscription fee for the right to rent a furnished bedroom — not a whole apartment — in one of several buildings. The payments are month-to-month, and the focus is on community, so there are things like potluck dinners and on-site “residence advisors.”

It’s basically like a college dorm, but for independent adults.

Common is meant to appeal to young startup workers, so the addition of Slack as an amenity makes a certain kind of sense. It also shows that Slack, already valued at $2.8 billion, may have a future beyond the workplace.

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