GitHub’s ‘Licensed’ will make open source project licensing easier
Open source licensing is complicated. Today, programs are 20 per cent original code on top of 80 per cent previously open-sourced code. To reduce the licensing complexities, GitHub has open sourced Licensed.
Licensed is a tool from GitHub, used to automate the licensing of some of GitHub’s open source projects. It will help developers efficiently use their code’s open source licensing by spotting potential problems with a program’s dependency licence early in its development cycle.
Licensed works in any Git repository, by finding, caching and checking licence metadata for dependencies. It can detect dependencies from multiple language types and package managers across innumerable projects in a single repository. This flexibility allows it to work equally well for a repository holding thousands of projects as it would for a repository containing a single project.
This new open source program operates on the concepts of ‘applications’. An application is defined as the combination of a source location and a cache directory. A configuration file is used to specify one or more applications that you’re checking for licensing concerns.