Nick Mailer is the CTO and a founder of the exciting new UK-based WordPress platform, Timpani
. Nick has over 20 years of experience in the Free and Open Source Software hosting world, and has helped to distill that experience into a new WordPress platform with great, humane support.
Who is Timpani and what are you guys doing?
We’re a group of hosting and WordPress veterans who looked hard at the frustrations developers and designers were having with some of the traditional hosting companies – and even dedicated WordPress offerings – and decided to try to solve those frustrations.
As individuals, we have supported some of the busier WordPress installs in Europe, so we know how to tweak the platform so it sings even under a tornado of hits! We wanted to take some of this “enterprise WordPress” knowledge and distil its best-practice into an affordable, easy-to-use platform with a great interface.
We also knew that many UK developers who were developing UK sites for UK and European audiences wanted the guarantee that the site would be hosted and managed entirely in the UK for technical, security and regulatory reasons. And we were in a position to guarantee that.
So, while there are plenty of accomplished WordPress hosts out there – and we respect our peers and look forward to working with them in the community – Timpani as a platform is something different. In short, we’re not just another WordPress host: we don’t offer WordPress options alongside myriad other systems and software.
We’re 100% WordPress. Timpani doesn’t merely “host” WordPress; we have architected a full platform dedicated to the needs of the WordPress community.
What is Timpani’s mission?
Our mission is to provide enterprise-level WordPress to the masses: unique security partitioning, simple to use private-key ssh and git-push, reliable caching from day one and full team management facilities for your Timpani account across your WordPress instances. But beyond the technical checklist, we wanted to provide the service with a level of support and flexibility unheard of at this price-point.
We have spent years being astonished at the rigid lack of humanity sometimes shown in the hosting sector, and we’re determined to prove that offering an affordable, mass-appeal product should not equal an indifferent, outsourced support team.
What do you do with WordPress?
We install it in a unique way so that you have your own user who can precisely control what process has access to what files. So no more needing to add “world write” permissions to folders; no more ‘www-data’ files lying about. No more discovering that something’s overwritten your wp-config file!
On top of this secure environment, we ensure that the core gets updated automatically, of course, with no nail-biting or prayers required. It just works.
Each Timpani account comes with its own UAT (staging) partner. You can do some really useful things like synchronize your live site to your UAT site at the click of a button, as part of your test/deploy workflow, and then git push any changes once you’re happy. It all works so simply and elegantly because we’ve designed the platform from scratch, and haven’t just bolted together a bunch of half-working plugins and crossed our fingers … And should you need any additional help, or want something tweaked, our support team works very hard to avoid “computer says no” shoulder-shrugging!
How will you support WordPress?
We want to be a very good WordPress citizen. Our whole team is really passionate about Free and Open Source software. We know that just taking from the brilliant people who make WordPress the vibrant platform it is today is not good enough: we must give as well. To that end, we will release any public plugins we develop under the GPL. We will also keep our eyes open for the opportunity to support – financially and technically – any promising project in the WordPress galaxy that could use a little help!
Why are you sponsoring WordCamp London? What does it mean to you?
We want people to get to know about us. We want to get to know people’s opinions about what we’re offering, and to adapt to those opinions. There is no better place in the WordPress world than WordCamp to get those opinions loud and clear. WordCamps represent the beating heart of the living WordPress community, and that’s exactly what we want to be a part of.
We’ve no interest in being just any slickly promoted corporate shell. It’s not what gets us up in the morning. Making cool stuff for exactly the sorts of enlightened developers who attend WordCamp is what does. And as the first pure UK-based WordPress specialist host of its type, Timpani can think of no better place to say hello than WordCamp London!