Spoilers: Mass Effect 3 Show more
I was replaying Mass Effect 3, and it came to me that the Crucible is such a perfect metaphor for free software. It's technology shared througout the ages, with each civilization adding its own contributions to it.
In the end, both the biggest help and biggest obstacle that has to be overcome is the quality of the documentation. It probably would take a huge team of scientists to figure out a man page in an alien language.