Many MNCs like Facebook, Uber, Google and now Microsoft have joined the OpenChain Project, but what's it all about? I think it has something to do with FOSS licenses, but based on the material on their website, I can't understand what problem(s) the project is even attempting to solve, let alone how they intend to solve them.


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Their getting started page pretty much explains it all, quote:

Our Mission is to establish requirements to achieve effective management of open source for software supply chain participants, such that the requirements and associated collateral are developed collaboratively and openly by representatives from the software supply chain, open source community, and academia.

Phrased in my own words, OpenChain defines processes on how to properly implement Open Source compliance (like: license obligation) checks and create software Bill-of-Materials (BOMs) throughout a software supply chain. Companies can get certified to adhere to OpenChain recommended processes, and ultimately OpenChain aims to become an ISO standard.

So far for the "abstract" part. But OpenChain also hosts a reference tooling work group that actually implements the different tools required to perform all these checks and the generation of reports, and these reference tools all are Open Source Software.

Disclaimer: I'm the founder of the OSS Review Toolkit which is part of OpenChain's reference tooling.

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