An important goal of the ODK community is to enable users to select suitable components from an ecosystem of complementary tools. A thriving ecosystem means that organizations can use the tools that best suit their needs without worrying about vendor lock-in.

The ODK tools include Collect, Aggregate, XLSForm, Build, Briefcase, and Central. The shared components that enable ODK core tools to be compatible with a broad ecosystem are:

  • ODK XForms, a low-level form specification based on XForms
  • XLSForm, a high-level Excel-based form specification
  • OpenRosa APIs, APIs for how ODK clients talk to ODK servers
  • ODK JavaRosa, a Java library that processes ODK XForms
  • pyxform, a Python library that converts XLSForms into ODK XForms

The ecosystem members who openly collaborate to grow this ecosystem are:

  • ELMO, hosted server originally designed for election monitoring
  • Enketo, web application for filling forms in the browser
  • Kobo Toolbox, hosted server with graphical form builder
  • Medic Mobile, hosted server for frontline medical care
  • Ona, hosted server with graphical form builder