CycleStreets is supported by a whole range of people, whether in terms of mapping, coding, feedback handling, photo curation, awareness-raising, donations, grants (as reported via this blog), and more.
One area is the great support that our hosting company, Mythic Beasts, provides.
Over many years, they’ve given us various bits of freebie hosting, and it’s also been great to be able to get some friendly advice once in a while on hardware scaling, as traffic to our systems grows.
For instance, since the early days of our project, they’ve supplied our development server which we use for various infrastructure requirements like monitoring and some source control. They’ve supported some of the VM hosting requirements of our Cyclescape project. Another example has been a large VM with masses of RAM for trying particularly intensive processes. They’ve also been flexible as we’ve upgraded machines and VMs over the years.
Running a journey planner covering three routing modes (actually it’s more than three, because of multiple speeds) over a large geographical area (we’re not just UK these days, lots of other areas are enabled, even if they’ve not been formally ‘launched’ as such!), for both our own website/app as well as third-party mobile apps, with proper redundancy, means that hosting is a fairly significant cost for us.
Hosting in particular is our main constraint on expansion towards worldwide coverage. Routing requires lots of CPU, large amounts of RAM (when you plan a route it barely touches the disk, for speed), and plenty of disk space (because OSM data is growing all the time). Some of our hosting uses fantastic Mac Mini hosting, which gives all this at low cost – we believe it works out significantly cheaper than ‘cloud’ hosting. So all the help we can get is welcome.
Mythic Beasts are a great company who have grown up in our area, Cambridge, and we sometimes run into Pete from Mythic Beasts while working in a favourite local café :)
Though we do our own sysadmining, Mythic have always provided us with peace of mind, through excellent and responsive support, in case of any problems that might arise.
PS We welcome donations in support of the project, whether financial or in kind (e.g. more hosting is always needed!). Although we don’t accept advertising or paid links on our sites, it is our policy to acknowledge significant donations from companies or organisations through this blog. Do get in touch!