The name Maavis was originally an acronym for "Managed Access to Audio, Visual and Information Services". It is available under the GPL open source licence meaning you can download it and use it for any purpose without having to purchase a licence. You are also free to copy, redistribute and study it. Modifications and derived works can be distributed under the terms of the GPL, though we encourage you to join our community and work with us.

Maavis builds on other open source technologies, specifically; Mozilla Firefox (PortableApps version), VLC, Outfox and Python. It is implemented as a Firefox add-on, which has full access to the extensive features of the Mozilla Application Framework. The VLC media player plugin for Firefox provides access to most media formats. Outfox provides access to Python software that in turn provides features such as the video conferencing access, and switch access.

To find out more, read the documents listed on the right. This detailed introduction to Maavis, is supplemented by other blog posts on Steve Lee's blog that provide project background, and technical details. The Requirements document provides a summary of features.

The Maavis project originates from University of Sheffield's past Advanced Care Technologies Programme (see archived website) as a research project investigating technology use for social purposes by older people living in a care environment. A prototype system was used for field testing and this lead to the specification and development of this open source project. A subsequent phase added switch support to be used in school and educational contexts.

We aim to develop Maavis further through collaboration with all interested parties and OSS Watch are providing advice on how to maximise the benefits of open development, including community engagement.