Mimi is Swahilli for “i”. A Mimiboard is like a traditional noticeboard, according to Umuntu Media. With the Mimiboard anyone will be able to create one, peg it in the ground at a location, add categories to it, and enable a community on hyper-local level to communicate, transact and add notes on the board. Communication to the Mimiboard can happen via SMS, Android, Web, J2ME.

Umuntu media’s Johan Nel says that they developed Mimiboard to solve a problem they faced as a publisher. The content need to be  engaging and relevant enough to add value and make a difference to people’s lives. To spread the technology, Mimiboard has a “Publish” function.

Johan Nel explains:

Publishers all over the world have problems in keeping users engaged, playing in the social media area, revenue and maintaining a community. A publisher can create boards for traffic tips, Classifieds, Restaurant reviews, citizen news, chat room etc…  The publisher then saves those Mimiboard as a stack, names the stack and then hit the export to embed button. Mimiboard wizard takes them through the steps and quickly a publisher has a fully embedded Mimiboard in his website. iFrame or RSS. So with the click of a few buttons the site has a fully integrated SMS, Android, J2ME and Rich web communications channel to the readers.

Mimiboard has two other “publisher” functions – Print and display.

Inspired by blogger Alfred Sirleaf from Liberia, Umuntu Media knew that if they combine SMS, data and print, they would be filling a unique gap in the market. Umuntu Media through Mimiboard looks to empower anyone to create real classified styled newspapers in seconds. Mimiboard allows users to engage with that paper, contribute to tomorrow’s paper and respond to posting in the paper via any of its channels.

Currently the application is in closed Beta but it will be ready in 30 days.