That you for posting this story! I was unaware of this project.
The fact that this MMO will have in-world non-instanced Player Housing, ala SWG but even better, PLUS realistic non-restricted skill development are enough for me to get excited about this and invest in it. Being able to run my own server without waiting years for a community emulated one cinches it!
I would love it if they could eventually also add the capability for relatively unlimited underground adventuring, perhaps in layers? And Digging, ala Minecraft.
I would also love it if they could find a way to allow non-Steam use, at least for private servers. Otherwise I will have to always have my separate Steam-box running in order to play the game, which uses the same monitor as my main system, limiting my ability for normal use as MMO's are something I usually run in addition to other things at the same time and on the same system. I also run my non-steam games from within VMware VMs which Steam will NOT allow... I will Never install Steam or any Extreme DRM on my main system as I do development and business work on it too and won't tolerate the kernel hacking and virtual device restricting behavior they are known for as well as random destructive behavior that could cause me to have to reinstall the OS and rebuild the whole environment again, causing me unacceptable down-time.
Otherwise, best of luck on this project! I can see people using this MMO software for many years to come.