Shared core functionality

Kolibri provides a set of shared “core” functionality – including components, styles, and helper logic, and libraries – which can be re-used across apps and plugins.

JS libraries and Vue components

The following libraries and components are available globally, in all module code:

  • vue - the Vue.js object

  • vuex - the Vuex object

  • logging - our wrapper around the loglevel logging module

  • CoreBase - a shared base Vue.js component (CoreBase.vue)

And many others. The complete specification for commonly shared modules can be found in kolibri/core/assets/src/core-app/apiSpec.js. This object defines which modules are imported into the core object. These can then be imported throughout the codebase - e.g.:

import Vue from 'kolibri.lib.vue';
import CoreBase from 'kolibri.coreVue.components.CoreBase';

Adding additional globally-available objects is relatively straightforward due to the plugin and webpack build system.

To expose something in the core app, add the module to the object in apiSpec.js, scoping it to the appropriate property for better organization - e.g.:

components: {
utils: {

These modules would now be available for import anywhere with the following statements:

import CoreTable from 'kolibri.coreVue.components.CoreTable';
import navComponents from 'kolibri.utils.navComponents';


In order to avoid bloating the core api, only add modules that need to be used in multiple plugins.


To help enforce style guide specs, we provide global variables that can be used throughout the codebase. This requires including @import '~kolibri-design-system/lib/styles/definitions'; within a SCSS file or a component’s <style> block. This exposes all variables in definitions.scss.

Dynamic core theme

Vuex state is used to drive overall theming of the application, in order to allow for more flexible theming (either for accessibility or cosmetic purposes). All core colour styles are defined in Javascript variables kept in Vuex state, which are then applied inline to elements using Vue.js style bindings from Vuex getters.

There are two cases where dynamic styles cannot be directly applied to DOM elements: - inline styles cannot apply pseudo-classes (e.g. ‘:hover’, ‘:focus’, ‘::before’) - styles applied during Vue transitions

For these cases, it’s necessary to define a “computed class” using the $computedClass function. This returns an auto-generated class name which can be used like a standard CSS class name. Under the hood, this uses Aphrodite to create unique classes for each set of inputs given, so be careful not to abuse this feature!

In order to apply a style using a computed class, define a style object as a computed property, similarly to how you might for a Vue.js style binding. Pseudo-selectors can be encoded within this object:

import themeMixin from 'kolibri.coreVue.mixins.themeMixin';

export default {
  mixins: [themeMixin],
  computed: {
    pseudoStyle() {
      return {
        ':hover': {
          backgroundColor: this.$themeTokens.primaryDark,

Then, within the template code, this can be applied to an element or component using a Vue.js class binding, and using the $computedClass method, referencing this style object:

<div :class="$computedClass(pseudoStyle)">I'm going to get a white background when you hover on me!</div>

To use computed classes for Vue.js transitions, you can use the {event}-class properties as options on the <transition> or <transition-group> special component, and the $computedClass method can be used again:

<transition-group :move-class="$computedClass(pseudoSelector)">
  <div>While moving I'll have the hover style applied!</div>

Bootstrapped data

The kolibriCoreAppGlobal object is also used to bootstrap data into the JS app, rather than making unnecessary API requests.

For example, we currently embellish the kolibriCoreAppGlobal object with a urls object. This is defined by Django JS Reverse and exposes Django URLs on the client side. This will primarily be used for accessing API Urls for synchronizing with the REST API. See the Django JS Reverse documentation for details on invoking the Url.

Additional functionality

These methods are also publicly exposed methods of the core app:

kolibriCoreAppGlobal.register_kolibri_module_async   // Register a Kolibri module for asynchronous loading.
kolibriCoreAppGlobal.register_kolibri_module_sync    // Register a Kolibri module once it has loaded.
kolibriCoreAppGlobal.stopListening                   // Unbind an event/callback pair from triggering.
kolibriCoreAppGlobal.emit                            // Emit an event, with optional args.