You might think that a group of intelligent people like the members of the free and open source software (FOSS) community would be free of hidden taboos. You might expect that such a group of intellectuals would find no thought forbidden or uncomfortable—but if you did, you would be wrong.
Like any sub-culture, FOSS is held together by shared beliefs. Such beliefs help to create a shared identity, which means that questioning them also means questioning that identity.
Some of these taboo subjects might undermine truisms held for twenty years or more. Others are new and challenge accepted truths. If examined, any of them can be as threatening as a declaration of shared values can be reassuring. Yet while examining taboos can be uncomfortable, doing so can often be necessary. Beliefs can linger long after they no longer apply or have degenerated into half-truths. Every now and then, it is useful to think the unthinkable, if only so beliefs can be re-synced with reality.