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"Goodbye, Jean-Luc, I'm gonna miss you. You had such potential. But then again, all good things must come to an end."
- Q, Star Trek: TNG

The Geek Tree, 2010 Edition

by Ken Newquist / December 31, 2010

The Geek Tree returned in 2010, but not in its standard format. In an effort to conserve space, and to avoid having rampant two-year-olds Godzilla the ornaments, I combined the Geek Tree with the Family Tree. The upside was that I was able to easily fit all of the geek ornaments on the larger tree, the downside was that we didn't have nearly as many family ornaments this year.

The tree we picked out for this purpose was a narrower, taller tree, again to help with the toddler conundrum. While our own kids are now 4 and 7, and thus don't present much of a threat to the tree, many of our friends have smaller kids. Combined with having sixty people attend our annual Christmas party, we figured that narrower was better.

I followed a design similar to the one I did last year, using LED color lights to provide a nice multi-hued, star-like approach, while strands of white light illuminated the tree's interior and provided essential power to the older Hallmark ornaments. Finding lights that would do the trick was a challenge; too many of today's lights pride themselves on low-power, LED-based efficiency, but these strands don't provide enough power for my fleet of ornamental starships. Fortunately I was able to find GE's commercial grade, traditional white bulb lights at Home Depot.

The tree saw four new ornaments added this year:

I debated getting the Enterprise, which was inspired by the new Star Trek movie, because I'm not a huge fan of its over-sized warp nacelles. But at the end of the day I have almost every other Star Trek starship ornament, so how could I not get it ... especially when it was 50% off the day after Christmas?

The Mini Geek Tree made its return at work. It's much the same as last year, though it now has my old Apple ][+ as a tree stand. The tree stands in the corner of my office, where passersby in the library can see its LED lights illuminating the frosted glass. It's an unexpectedly nice effect, and one that always makes me smile when returning from meetings.

You can check out photos of this year's tree, as well as those of Geek Trees Past, in my Flickr feed.