Just an odd note on the fact that I started a new game after getting my PC back up, running a new civilization with the Thalan Tech Tree, and found what I have to say is *the* most goofed up thing.
Since you only get the basic review of a tech during the pregame set-up, it is possible to pick what seem to be (to someone that has not played it) perfectly sane beginning Thalan tech - start the game, and realize you have nothing to build. When I finished researching my first Tech, it let me build the buildings resulting from it (So I presume it not to be a bug as such), but the amount of time it was going to take to research anything but that first level tech pretty definitively made the game unwinnable from the start I'm afraid.
I would think that on that list, there would be a factory or lab somewhere! Perhaps at a minimum, in future tech trees, a basic lab and factory should be guaranteed near the base of the tree to ensure that you have 'something' to build up to the galactic standard with perchance?
Thanks - Jonnan