Kolibre name and logo
The name "Kolibre" is a wordplay on "kolibri", the Swedish word for hummingbird and a symbol for "reading aloud". Combining 'kolibri' with "libre", the French word for "free", as in the FLOSS-term "free and libre open source software", resulted in the name. The Kolibre logo tells the story: a hummingbird reading/singing from a papyrus roll. Kolibre is a registered trademark.
Kolibre is a non-profit association registered in Finland and the association’s statues read as follows: “The purpose of the association is to promote information systems as tools for individuals with print disabilities. The association fulfills its purpose by maintaining projects that are engaged in research related to and the development of information systems as tools for individuals with print disabilities as well as administrating and supporting the community associated with said projects. The distribution of results, source code and related material shall occur under an open source code license”.
Kolibre is a member of COSS – the Finnish Centre for Open Systems and Solutions and The Finnish DAISY Consortium (a full member of the international DAISY Consortium).
Kolibre’s vision is that all individuals in need of custom solutions should have access to talking publications with a natural voice, regardless of their location, through a customized receiver: whether a smart phone, computer, e-reader or customized player for the visually impaired.
Kolibre’s board consists of representatives from various organizations for the visually impaired as well as companies. Together with expertise, the task is to discover innovative solutions to meet the needs of the visually impaired by using available technology. Kolibre strives to create a community of developers around the open source codebase. The Kolibre board’s focus on development is guided by Kolibre’s associated partners and the community.
Support and membership
To support its activities, the association is allowed to receive grants, donations and legacies. All those who are interested may apply for membership in the association; see contact information under the “Contact” tab.
Kolibre’s board is comprised of the following members:
Martin von Willebrand (HH Partners), Chairperson
Matthias Jakobsson (FSS), Vice Chairperson
Seppo Sjö (NÖSS), Treasurer
Bengt Ahlvik (NÖSS)
Cecilia Weckman (FSS)
Roger Sundsten (Pratsam Ab)
Jonas Storholm (Pratsam Ab)
Kolibres board secretary and CEO is Daniel Ainasoja.
The software development started in 2002 by Norra Österbottens Svenska Synskadade rf (NÖSS), a Finnish non-profit contact, interest and service organization for visually impaired. NÖSS sought for a solution together with Jakobstads Tidning (today Österbottens Tidning) to modernize the daily talking newspaper which back then was distributed by tape.
Since then several projects, mainly funded by the Finnish Slot Machine Association, have been carried out in conjunction with other partners (i.e. Pratsam Ab) to improve and further develop the software for different needs:
Den digitala taltidningen, (Eng. The Digital Talking Newspaper)
Digital service för synskadade, (Eng. Digital Services For Visually Impaired)
Ett tillgängligt informationssamhälle, (Eng. An Accessible Information Society)
Hjälpmedel för jämställdhet, (Eng. Aids For Equality)
Kolibre was founded April 27th 2012 by Norra Österbottens svenska synskadade rf, Förbundet Finlands svenska synskadade rf and Pratsam Ab. The software for the Pratsam system was donated to Kolibre and is being refactored and published.