There are many different types of activities you can participate in, most of these in the form of missions but there are plenty of ways to make credits.
Trading can be a lucrative career within TextSpaced as you can buy and sell commodities, ports, items and parts from merchants to other merchants. Each merchant will have their own preferences and the prices are affected by local and galactic availability. You can also make credits by selling weapons and equipment your faction has crafted, selling components or buying items such as parts to build new things to sell later down the line. Buying and selling can also be influenced by hiring crew and improving your trading modifier through realised skills.
Mining and selling commodities, much like trading, is a good stable way to generate credits. The sell price of commodities is affected by the availability in the local area and the global exchange value which can be checked within the services window at any system which provides the trading commodities service. Additionally, some ships feature perks and equipment which can be used to help with mining and crew can be hired to increase your mining yield further. As well as selling mined commodities, the commodities can be used by you and your faction to ultimately build structures.
Missions can be found in most systems within the missions window. There are a variety of missions to complete from different factions and completing a mission will increase or decrease a specific factor as well as providing a reward. Each mission brief will be different and you can view the brief and read the details of each step before accepting it, which is usually done by providing a deposit.
Each mission will also have a stated expiry time and failing missions can cause loss of karma with the issuing faction as well as impacting your mission success rate which increases the deposit of future missions.
Crafting is another important repertoire to any faction as it opens up new opportunities. There are several types of crafting in the game and an article about crafting is available.
The universe can be a hostile place and although the Transitional Government will try to keep the peace you may often find yourself in combat. Players and NPCs alike can choose to attack one another whenever they like, so it's important to be ready to fight or flee. A full combat guide will help you understand the systems before getting into a fight but most importantly remember to fit weapons to your ship as soon as possible.