Alpha, Nu and 2.0 ringed below so you can compare it the plot map below.
I'm in several parts of the galaxy now thanks to the wonderful Explorer IIs paying off, and am quite fortunate in that no one is attacking me - I've got @dachcolony allies close by to many areas, so it'd be a little silly of anyone I guess.
I've actually drawn up this little map of my home territory to figure out how I can feed certain planets to speed up my skilling up and ship production.... I can only produce certain 'advanced' ships on a few planets, and I need to feed them otherwise all my resources just get spent on regular ship production and auto-upgrades, although soon the later will be done.
I think it's pretty cool - it looks like nuclei - I had to manually enter the data into excel, but maybe this could be a future Python mission - figure out how get the data and auto-plot it.... only slight problem is that I've NO IDEA how to do that!
I've also hit on the theory that if I feed infrequently and large amounts then it leaves more mission slots for exploration.
That only applies to my home territory, I've got various groups of outposts, some many 100s of squares away, thankfully all of them consist of at least four planets which makes me difficult to attack as I can easily send my ships to a nearby planet, as long as I catch the incoming wave.
I'm also very happy that I've managed to score a new planet in an area 'beyond the outer ring' which gives me a totally new area of space - I've got a couple of dozen explorers on their way now, although estimated journey time is just under two weeks, so it'll be a while 'til they get busy.
All in all, it's a bizarre experience: playing a game that absolutely requires bot assistance, but It's not entirely unenjoyable either!