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OATS ("Open Source Assistive Technology Software") is a source code repository or "forge" for assistive technology software. It was launched in 2006 [1] with the goal to provide a one-stop “shop” for end users, clinicians and open-source developers to promote and develop open source assistive technology software. It also allows users to find other software that is free but not open source,[2] and open-source software that is developed elsewhere, for example NVDA,[3] Orca[4] and FireVox.[5]

The OATS website was launched at the end of the OATS project, a one-year pilot project that ended in March 2006, and claimed to be the first open-source repository dedicated to assistive technology.[2][6] In April 2006, the British Computer Society (BCS) announced that it was backing the OATS project;[7] in August 2006, the British Computer Society's Open Source Specialist Group organised a meeting about the project.[8]

The OATS project was made up of five partner organisations co-ordinated by the ACE Centre.[9] The OATS repository wants to offer an efficient and intuitive way to access good quality assistive technology.[10] The OATS repository offers the following facilities to developers:[11]

  • project pages to document and manage a software project,
  • a code repository (Subversion),
  • a project management system (Trac or Poi).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Steve Lee: "OATSoft, a new service and a landmark for Accessibility", 6 May 2006.
  2. ^ a b OATS: Project Summary.
  3. ^ OATS: NVDA (Non Visual Desktop Access).
  4. ^ OATS: Orca.
  5. ^ OATS: Fire Vox.
  6. ^ OATS: OATS Launch Press Release, 3 May 2006.
  7. ^ Justin Richards: "BCS backs open source project to boost software for disabled users" Computer Weekly, Thursday 20 April 2006.
  8. ^ "OATS Meeting Aftermath", BCS Open Source Specialist Group Blog, Friday, August 11th 2006.
  9. ^ OATS: OATS Consortium.
  10. ^ OATS: Project Context.
  11. ^ OATS: Hosting on OATS.

External links[edit]