About the Site

Motivation and Purpose

Over the years, the purpose of Star Trek Minutiae and my motivation for maintaining it has changed considerably. When I first started making plans for my own website in late 1999, I was quite enthusiastic for the Star Trek universe, and used the website to channel all my creative thoughts concerning the show. There were all sorts of projects that I either dabbled in speculatively or threw myself into entirely: the Advanced Starship Design Bureau, the History of the Earth-Romulan War, and Star Trek: Renaissance, to name just three.

But as I spent time creating and expanding the site, I discovered another interest as well: web design. STM has also become a platform with which I can experiment with new design techniques, and learn new coding languages and technologies. Sure, I may end up spending as much time redesigning STM as I do adding new content (or maybe even more!), but I think it’s a useful endeavor.

But in the end, what is any personal website about in this day and age? I might as well just come out and say it: it’s all about me! STM is a place for me to showcase whatever catches my fancy, to share with everyone else the stuff I think is cool, and to get on a (virtual) soapbox to at least pretend that other people are interested in what I have to say. And that’s what the whole internet is really about, right?

See also: History of Star Trek Minutiae

About Dan Carlson

Dan at the premiere of Star Trek Beyond, July 2016
Dan at the premiere of Star Trek Beyond, July 2016

I’m a former history student who got an opportunity to follow my passion and work for an insanely great technology company. I spend my days sharing that love with others, showing them how they can do all sorts of cool stuff with technology, to enrich their lives and share with friends and family. (I know that sounds cheesy, but it’s true!)

I fell in love with Star Trek during the first season of Deep Space Nine in 1993. DS9 has always been my favorite, but I have enjoyed every single series. During my high school years, using the wonderful Star Trek Encyclopedia as a starting point, I created a personal database of ships, episodes, characters, planets, and other items of interest—something that reflected my interest in the details, background, and history of this rich fictional universe.

This interest has led me to become involved in a number of fan projects over the years. In 2003, I co-founded the Memory Alpha wiki with Harry Doddema. From 2001 to 2004, I contributed to the Star Trek: Renaissance fan fiction project, which explored the aftermath of DS9’s Dominion War. I’ve collaborated with Masao Okazaki on a few ship designs and articles for his amazing Starfleet Museum site. And certainly most exciting, in 2015 Harry and I were contacted by Simon Pegg—yes, that Simon Pegg—who solicited our contributions concerning a certain plot element in Star Trek Beyond!

In addition to Star Trek, my big interests in sci-fi are the grand, character-oriented space operas: Babylon 5, Farscape, Firefly, and Battlestar Galactica. I’m very fond of my cats Patches and Vala, and I’m slowly developing an interest in amateur photography.

Site Design Philosophy

As a technophile, I always love the latest and greatest. I also like to dabble in web design; not as a career, just a hobby. But everything you see on this site was built from scratch, no templates or stock code here! STM is not just a hobby for Star Trek, it’s also a platform for learning about the most recent web standards.

I used to have a detailed list of recommended browsers and which versions are capable of displaying this site properly. But over the years I’ve come to a simple realization: no matter which browser you use, just make sure you’re using the most recent one! Web technologies can evolve quickly, and you never know when something might break. I periodically test my website designs to ensure functionality on the latest version of the major browsers.

In order to display STM’s content properly, your browser should support the following standards:

I have used several advanced design techniques that might stretch the capabilities of older browsers in various ways. If you are using the latest version of your browser and encounter a problem with the site’s design, please feel free to report it — I am always willing and eager to listen to feedback concerning my work! However, if you are using an older browser, don’t bother complaining, because I will just ignore you. The technology of the web is constantly evolving, and everyone must keep up in order to keep using it.

Computer and Software

(You may have noticed there’s no tools by Adobe or Google in this list. It’s amazing what you can do if you look around for apps and services that aren’t controlled by monopolies!)

Fonts Used in Star Trek Minutiae


Special thanks go out to everyone who helped me put together this site: