Welcome to Nomagic Ltd, a company which aims to provide private individuals and small associations with a viable, responsible and commited alternative to Web services provided by big IT corporations. Located near London (UK), we aim to be an accessible and trustful partner of your digital life (which is still Your life).
The big picture
“Freedom is something that dies unless it’s used.” – Hunter S. Thompson
We are a small company aimed at helping you to achieve data ownership and full control over what we believe is yours and yours only. By providing you access to various FOSS-based (Free and Open Source Software) Web services at a competitive rate, we want to do our share in getting an Internet that is not constantly looking back at us, scrutinizing and selling every piece of information we produce, whether directly or indirectly (metadata). This is all the more a concern as Internet as become an ever-growing part of our life and pretty much all of people’s data are shared between a few of multinational companies. The reason for this is mostly historical, with early-age Internet companies managing to attract people decades ago offering free (as in free beer) access to their services under their terms of conditions, that usually result in making the end-user the ‘product’ to sell to others. We think such an hegemony is not healthy for a fair and respectful Internet, and by extent, to society. While big companies are free to pursue their quest of getting bigger with larger profits, this has raised several issues, such as:
- they are big targets for easy implementation of mass surveillance, which we believe will not help to better our societies but only contribute to reduce our freedom and put us at the mercy of whoever has access to this tremendous power. And of course, this will result in self-imposed censorship, like under dictatorship regimes.
- they tend to jail users into their products by voluntarily making them incompatible with others, violating standard protocols along the way (ex: XMPP chat protocol).
We strongly believe that full transparency and irrevocable rights over people’s own data is the only way ahead for the future. We believe people’s data is their own and should not be monetized and resold to third parties. To put simply, not everything should be for sale.
Our endeavour is to be part of a larger and growing network of hosters sharing fundamental values of openess, exchange, and respect (english translation is under way). This collective was initiated by Framasoft in 2016 under the acronym CHATONS (KITTENS in French).
note: The acronym was created playfully to describe core values and form the word of one the most viewed content on the Web. To stay true to the spirit a matching acronym translation could be: Keeping Internet True To Ethical and Neutral Services ^^.
Internet is in danger
Known privacy infringement laws and worldwide spying are very real, and represent a danger to our most basic freedom: the right for privacy and the freedom of speech. Net neutrality, the most sacred principle of Internet, which is the main reason for its success, is regularly challenged by private entities who tend to see Internet only as a source of profit. We believe those changes, imposed on citizens without any consultation or given choice, are shaking the foundations of our societies as a whole. While we hope these laws won’t last forever, we also believe it is everyone’s responsability to take a stand against this evolution, by bringing our own changes. As citizens and consummers, we are all part of the system, and our actions and choices (or the lack of them) have consequences.
There is an ever-growing threat to net neutrality, partly pushed by some ever-greedy ISP (Internet Service Provider. Did you know that in the US multiple ISPs have been caught for editing the web pages you are browsing in order to inject advertisement? Can you imagine how dangerous that is for freedom and privacy? Tomorrow your content could be modified on the fly to apply censorship or disinformation without you even knowing it… Could be your email as well! Well, maybe non-tampered Internet will be available for an extra fee then! Scary, right?!
What can we do?
“Change is hard at the beginning, messy in the middle and gorgeous at the end.” – John Charles Polanyi
Only the use of Free Software provides the most basic requirements for a digital trust relationship. More than that, they provide a virtuous circle in the development of software programs, as a Free Software program can be used, studied, modified, and redistributed freely.
Why not trust a software that does not provide its own sources? Because you can’t make any improvement or correction, and have absolutely no way to know if that piece of software does not contain malicious code, backdoor, etc. It’s like buying a house in which you would not be authorized to change anything in it, with some doors closed, and possibly a backdoor without the key to open or lock it. It’s that simple, really.
No software is ‘perfect’, and bugs and vulnerabilities can be found regardless of a software licensing model. The Wikpedia page on open source and closed source software confirms this. However we also know that usually open source communities are very fast to react to vulnerabilities and provide a patch publicly available within hours.
In the last few years, we have noticed a growing number of concerned citizen having an interest in their privacy and taking back ownership of their digital lives. Nomagic is committed to providing those people a full set of applications and best practices to broaden their use of Internet without being a product while contributing to a small local business.
Online data is real life information, we offer you the possibility to keep ownership over it.
Closer to the local loop
We would be happy to have you onboard and to accompany you in mastering our tools and services (when possible). If you live near London, your system administrator has probably never been so close, and we hope to meet regularly to chat and exchange.
As said earlier, we want a decentralized Internet with service we can trust and rely on without having to tradeoff our privacy. We have an objective of a maximum of 15000 users, with as many services as possible. We want to stay relatively small and be able to meet with as many users as possible.
How would it make a difference?
We are not alone! Many passionate and concerned people feel the same way, and there are already many other companies / associations that are in the process of proposing great alternative services that relying exclusively on free software, making a point of keeping your data private.
Nomagic aims to be part of that ‘network’.
What can you expect?
We have implemented a number of services for our users to access. You can see the full catalog with more details here.
- Email using any mail client or our webmail SOGo. Our email solution is a Postfix / Dovecot server.
- Chat/XMPP using any XMPP client or through SOGo. Our XMPP server is OpenFire
- Webmail/ Address Book / Calendar using SOGo
- File Hosting using Seafile client or via the Web Interface, with OnlyOffice integration for online editing
- Temporary file hosting using Lufi
- Calendar tool using Framadate
- Taking notes using Turtl
- Collaborative text edition using Etherpad-lite
- Read-later online tool using Wallabag
Under the hood
- Our infrastructure servers are hosted by Hetzner, a German hosting provider.
- Our services status page is hosted on a virtual machine at Rackspace (Hong Kong datacenter). This allow the status page to be reachable in case of a major service interruption.
- We use Proxmox hypervisor on a GNU/Linux Debian distribution.
- We make use of LXC containers and Qemu-KVM virtual machine for our infrastructure.
- The infrastructure is monitored locally and off-site for reachability.
- We have full weekly backups for everything except Lufi data (temporary file share).
- We have daily snapshots of all containers/ virtual machines.