Since Trek reference books are few and far between these days (attributed to lackluster sales, if I recall) then I don't mind paying a little extra for this book. It's a very handsome volume, and while the pedestal is a gimmick, it would suit the decor of a Trek collector, although it really shouldn't be a 24th century style LCARS interface, but hey, maybe Memory Alpha was the first Federation organization to use that particular OS!)
Further, the retail price is almost never what is being charged, and for those who wait, you may find these discounted further in it's life cycle. Perhaps without the pedestal. But I believe this book is an Amazon exclusive, so unlikely to find in a store reduced somehwere like all DK visual guides seem to go the route of.
I have really enjoyed the book, and would gladly pay for another volume that covers the next 75 years or so (up to 2386, which should cover most of non-JJ Trek TV and movies, but might be just shy of the Hobus supernova, I think)
And while I have to say I appreciate the effort put forth in The Romulan War books to weave in all the little bits of Romulan War info put forth in the various Trek tv/movie productions (including TOS lore that is hard to rectify, such as no warp drive for Roumlan ships) the Federation book created a more believable (but different) summary of the events, even if they just flat out ignored/contradicted a few "canon facts". Since Trek itself has taken liberties with it's own established continuity, I can accept it without crying foul.
There's plenty of "easter eggs" or continuity porn here too, but since the book represents a broad history rather than the more detailed storytelling of a novel, they don't seem to stick out as much, but rather blend in more organically.
That said, I'm most interested in "The Rise of the Federation" next year, in the hopes that it further fleshes out early Fed history in an exciting way.