THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A four-member-strong software development team from Virtus IT Services, Technopark, with assistance from Anjali Rajan Dileep, management representative of the same firm, has come up with an innovative venture for children. Christened ‘Kuttikatha’, the initiative is a storytelling software application, touted to be the first-of-its-kind in Malayalam.
The team consists of Nisha Salim, software engineer; Jayadev R J, senior HTML developer-cum-graphic designer; and Ajayakumar R and Sreeju S C, project managers. The voice for the application has been lent by Anjali, who also runs Apple Story Club for children. Anjali is the brain behind the software application.
The storytelling app shows a list of audio files/stories to choose from. One just needs to select any from the list and the audio starts playing. While the dearth of such applications in any regional language makes ‘Kuttikatha’ special, one more aspect which makes it unique, according to Anjali, is the lack of colourful graphics. She adds, “’Kuttikatha’ is an audio-only storytelling app. When we look at any similar application or even television programmes for children, everything is accompanied with colourful graphics and animation, which I feel restricts their imagination, freedom and creativity. For instance, a child can imagine a colour of his/her choice for a particular item if the story doesn’t have a visual, which is not possible otherwise. This is similar to the experience we enjoy when it comes to reading a book.”
“The app was developed within a little over a week. Right now, only android supports the application, but we hope to soon extend it to iPhones,” says Sreeju.
Anjali said that such an application is a blessing in disguise for the children, and adds that with their hectic and tiresome work schedules, parents don’t get the time to narrate stories to their kids. “At the same time, children are now becoming tech-savvy and are obsessed with smart phones from a very young age,” she says.
“Currently, the application has around ten listed moral stories from Aesop’s fables, Panchatantra and Jataka tales. We also hope the app encourages children to develop a habit of reading,” Anjali winds up.