Five minutes with Tim Moore

Welcome to a new feature on WordPress.com News. Every couple weeks, we’ll sit down with an Automattician to help you get to know the people who work behind the scenes to build new features, keep Automattic’s wheels turning, and make WordPress.com the best it can be. Mr. Tim Moore suggested this new feature and so we thought it only fitting that he should be first. Everybody, say hey to Tim!

What’s your role at Automattic?

Tim Moore

Tim Moore

At Automattic, I’m a member of Team Social. We handle projects like Publicize, Post by Email, Sharing, the new WordPress.com comments UI, and Gravatar, among others.

I also do a lot of work on Automattic’s Jetpack plugin. I have a toe in each part of Jetpack; I started out doing mostly development, though now I help with support, maintenance, and any aspect of the plugin that needs work.

What sort of work have you done in the past? What did you learn from it?

For development work, I maintained virtual machines. Usually, beyond the basic web server software (LAMP or similar), I didn’t get involved in other software packages that could be run (email, for example). I used to do this, but haven’t in a long time.

In light of some of the recent privacy policy rigamarole that has been going around in the tech world, I decided to brush up on my skills to see what I could do. I ended up setting up my own email server to handle email for several of my domains that, until then, I had piped into a Google Apps account. Because they’re low volume email accounts, I don’t need Google’s vast data centers. I ended up with a functional email server and I learned that email, a thing we take for granted, is a complicated beast.

If you have an interest in how something works, take the time to learn about it. It’s going to be frustrating (My email server certainly frustrated me!), and you’ll probably feel like you’d be better off leaving it to someone else (I felt like that too).

When you’re done, you’ll have learned something new, you’ll understand a service you’ve (maybe) taken for granted in the past, and you’ll have a new appreciation for how hard folks work to make these things available.

What do you love most about working at Automattic?

I love having instant access to some of the best brilliant minds in the field. I’m an autodidact* and love to learn; there’s nothing better than being able to jump on IRC or Skype to ask a question or have a discussion about something I don’t understand and coming away having learned something new.

I also like that my commute to my office can be different each day. Not just in, “Let’s take a different route to the office today,” but in that I can stay in bed and open the laptop, I can work in my home office, I can go to the café or restaurant. My commute can be different each night, too, if I choose to work at night.

What should the people know about you, Tim?

In my spare time (hah!), I write fiction (speculative fiction or science fiction or fantasy) and read just about anything that captures my interest. I currently have a novel and several short stories in progress and I usually read about one book a week (this week I’ve knocked off Gun Machine by Warren Ellis, the B-Team by John Scalzi, and am working on the Wool Omnibus by Hugh Howey).

I’m also a family person. I like to spend as much time with my wife, Caroline (also an Automattician!), and two daughters (ages four and one) as I can. One of the things I like to do with them, to relax after work, is cook dinner for the family.

*Fun fact: Leonardo da Vinci is one of the world’s best known autodidacts.

Did you know that Automattic is hiring? We want people who are willing to work hard, share their ideas, learn from their colleagues, take initiative to get things done without being told, and those who aren’t afraid to ask questions. Think you fit the bill? Work with us.


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Krista

32 Comments

Comments are closed.

  1. William Lawson

    This is a great feature! Most of us who use WP are grateful not only for its existence, but for the extraordinary quality and effort of those who make it work…and keep it fresh. Thank you Tim! And thank you Krista for doing this. Keep it up!

  2. Second Chance to Live

    Mr. Moore,
    Thank you for what you do to enhance the experience of people like myself here on WordPress.com.

    Have a great day Sir.

    Craig

  3. Deli Lanoux, Ed.D.

    Y’all at WP are the wind beneath our wings, so why not celebrate y’all, too?!! Thanks for the story behind the story. Great work!

  4. Cal Gough

    I like this new feature – it will help to “humanize” our interactions with WordPress: it helps to be reminded every now and then that there are apparently a host of Actual Persons out there keeping the software chugging along reliably, and inventing ways to enhance/improve/simplify the mechanics of blogging. Thanks to all of y’all for all you do.

  5. Dave Bonta

    I’ve become a big fan of Jetpack’s social features for most of my self-hosted sites. Glad to meet one of the people behind it. Thanks.

  6. PiedType

    Fun to get to know the folks behind the scenes. Thanks, Tim, for all you do (and for teaching me a new word — autodidact.)

  7. MikesFilmTalk

    I love these post that focus on the folks who help to make WordPress what it is. Thank you and keep em coming! As for the last of the post, I cannot think of a better job offer. You guys rule! Peace out! :-D

  8. Debra Joseph

    Thank You for this post..we learn something new everyday and today I learned about an autodidact. Thank you for the job offer too.

  9. Jacinta Whittaker

    This is great, thanks for personalizing the face of our WordPress experience. It’s good to know there are real people working behind the scenes who care about their work and have a great life. Keep it up! J

  10. m3cflag

    Seems most folks in this line of work have to be autodidactic or quickly become obsolete.

  11. Trina Schilling

    Nice to meet you Tim. I aspire to join Automattic, and have submitted my resume for a Happiness Engineer job. I hope I get the opportunity to meet you in person someday. ~ Trina Schilling

  12. the eternal traveller

    It’s great to meet the people who make all this possible.

  13. grumpytyke

    Autodidact, family man, likes to cook – you sound human. You don’t like to take photographs too by any chance? Great idea to feature someone at WordPress like this now and then – makes you seem a whole lot more friendly than the more usual regular school-ma’am type ‘lessons’.

  14. boedoc

    Thanks Tim, you get a Like from Germany. I know what you mean, working as a Software editor (Online Manual).
    Greetings from Kornelius
    (I also weite stories sometimes, der my blog…)

  15. arierahayu

    I love WordPress and love to know more about the people behind it. Great feature!

  16. maureenjenner

    Good to have a face, and someone to thank for the joy of using WordPress. A big thank you to each and every member of the team of Automatticians.

  17. Anny van Berckel

    Dear Tim. Thank you for the five minutes about your experience with Automattician and your provider. It is something quite new and probably the provider does not understand what you have in mind. I connected with WordPress.com News to see if it is something for me. I have already a blog in which I write in the Dutch language, but is not activ now. I am an old lady, studying astrology, but technical I am not so far fully understanding to know what your proposal means for me to become active . Regards! Anny van Berckel-de Kok.

    _____

  18. blackbook44

    Hello Tim, it was great to meet you. Thank you for all your hard work. Make sure you tell your wife and kids that you love them every day…

  19. andythehomelessguy

    Great idea. It’s a great site so no surprise that great people are behind it!

  20. atxer

    Enjoyed it a lot! Nice to meet you Tim :) Wise and inspiring words. Thanks! :)

  21. Sheri

    What a fantastic write-up! I know for a fact you put a lot of care into Jetpack (and all the work you do), and I love learning about other neat things you work on like email servers and writing science fiction.

    If you have an interest in how something works, take the time to learn about it.

    ^^ That’s my favorite quote from this post. I’ll take that to heart.

  22. Cecile

    I love this feature! It’s very interesting to learn about some of the people “behind the scenes”. It’s thanks to people like Tim Moore that Word Press is such an excellent place to blog!!

  23. Pooja Yadav

    I just love to write and WordPress helps me to share it with not only my friends but also other people all round the world…
    so I would really never miss this opportunity to thank people who’ve made this possible…thank you so much…!

  24. timethief

    Hi Tim,
    It’s good to meet you an know what you do for us as well as a little personal detail as well (speculative fiction or science fiction or fantasy) . The Team Social work you do to insure all works well for us bloggers is important and it will be interesting to find out who the other team members are too. Best wishes to you in all you do and thanks to Krista who interviewed you.

  25. Iñigo

    Nice knowing you, Tim! And thank you for the things you do in WordPress :)

  26. mt_Suzette (@mt_Suzette)

    The Publicize and Sharing features are my favorite! I have written several articles on these features and I will be presenting on this topic at a Meetup in Ventura. Kudos that all that worked on this. Also gave a shout out about Jetpack at #wcphx this last weekend in my Plugin Basics session. Looking forward to what the future holds!

  27. Lesley Buse

    Curiosity combined with creativity and your keen sense of sharing are benefiting so many of us who would be lost without you. This was a great story. I am grateful!

  28. Happylovejoy

    Love the comment ” If you have an interest in how something works, take the time to learn about it.” a simple advise but does take a lot of determination and effort to learn new things and excel at it..good job with WordPress..cheers

  29. ShimonZ

    Very interesting. It was a pleasure to meet Tim.

  30. crankycaregiver

    What a great idea..kudos to you. I have only been on WP for a week and I am so pleased I found this site. And to be able to get to meet the people behind the scenes…awesome! You guys keep up the great work!

  31. naturals

    great feature..

  32. shopsmithdoug

    I am 66 and love learning; today I learned there is a name for me–”autodidact”! It’s great to meet the faces and hear the stories behind the scenes.

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