Why Create CHAOSS?

Our open source ecosystem is growing. Today over 80 percent of the software in any technology product or service is open source. More developers and companies engage in open source every year because it is cost efficient, it enables rapid innovation, and it promotes open standards. Open source is becoming the default for software development.

The importance of open source software is no longer in question. However, its importance raises important questions about the open source ecosystem. Open source contributors want to know where they should place their efforts and know that they are making an impact. Open source communities want to attract new members, ensure consistent quality, and reward valuable members. Open source companies want to know which communities and software to engage with, communicate the impact the organization has on the community, and evaluate the work of their employees within open source. Open source foundations want to identify and respond to community needs, evaluate the impact of their work, and promote communities.

In response to these issues, the CHAOSS community is developing metrics, methodologies, and software for expressing open source project health and sustainability. By measuring open source project health and sustainability, CHAOSS seeks to improve the transparency of open source project health and sustainability so that relevant stakeholders can make more informed decisions about open source project engagement.

Why Call the Community CHAOSS?

CHAOSS stands for Community Health Analytics Open Source Software. We like the name because of the play on words. Have you never felt that open source development is a chaos? CHAOSS is here to help make sense of this chaos.

What are CHAOSS Goals?

The project aims to:

  • Establish standard implementation-agnostic metrics for measuring community activity, contributions, and health

  • Produce integrated open source software for analyzing software community development

  • Build reproducible project health reports/containers

CHAOSS Roadmap

Who are we?

CHAOSS is a Linux Foundation project focused on creating analytics and metrics to help define community health. Work in the CHAOSS Project community is organized in two committees and four working groups:


  • The Metrics Committee works on establishing implementation-agnostic metrics for measuring community activity, contributions, and health.

  • The Software Committee works on producing integrated, open source software for analyzing software development, and definition of standards and models used in that software in specific use cases.

Working Groups

The goal of the working groups is to refine the metrics and to work with software implementations. The workgroups are built around the four categories of metrics that CHAOSS has identified. The working groups are:

  • Diversity and Inclusion WG

  • Growth-Maturity-Decline WG

  • Common Metrics WG

Spreading CHAOSS

The CHAOSS project was officially announced at the Open Source Summit North America 2017 in Los Angeles. We thank all participants of the BoF and workshop for participating and contributing. Below is a picture of the workshop participants at OSSNA2017.

CHAOSS group picture at OSSNA2017.

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