Third week in a row of pretty much the same status!
Obviously, the Minutes have not yet been released. A good bit of this can be laid at the feet of pre-planning for the New Eden Open II, which CCP Dolan's obviously been busy with. But we've been promised that the final approvals will be very soon. At that point, the CSM will get them back, we can do our final look and edit -- last time, this took about two days -- and then they'll be in front of your eyeballs. And yes, I've already teased Dolan about his own hand-designed process being slow. ;-)
As I've mentioned before, I suspect a good bit of the delay is simply to keep the Minutes from pre-announcing a lot of the features of the summer expansion. The private section of the forums has been very busy! As a result, you should start seeing a stream of dev-blogs announcing themes and features quite soon now. At the Summit, the CSM also encouraged CCP to continue with the video introductions to upcoming feature themes so hopefully we'll see one or two of those as well. That's of course not all that's going on in the private section of the forums: as with the last couple of weeks, they're also quite busy with devs with questions and homework assignments for us.
Skype also continues to be pretty quiet all in all. During less busy periods in the development cycle, you could count on 500 or more lines of dialogue per day, most of it pretty casual. These days, 200 lines is a busy day. The devs are in full-on head down mode and it shows.
Jita Park is now quite full of CSM candidates, including a few more interesting ones like DNSBLACK (running for the first time) and Psychotic Monk (from last year). The latter, I endorsed last year as a sane alternative to James 315 and I more or less continue that thinking. The former could be a VERY entertaining member of the CSM. This is, after all, the man that fed Mittens the famous Jaegerbombs that launched a controversy. ;-) He also has an interesting history in his own right, having famously "auctioned" his character during the height of the "SOMER of rage".
Yeah, I've met him. Yeah, I like the guy. I guess it shows. ;-)
Anyway, we're now up to 30+ candidates declared on Jita Park, with a few more presumably coming. Sion Kumitomo from Goonswarm doesn't have a post up yet and if there's an official N3 candidate or a Russian candidate as yet, I've missed them. There also appear to be fewer wormhole candidates this year than I was expecting. So we'll see how it goes. In the meantime, grilling CSM9 candidates gives CSM8 candidates another thing to do...
Speaking of grilling CSM9 candidates, Xander Phoena's next CSM interview is up. This month, Xander (who's running himself) talked to Ali Aras (who is running) and Malcanis (who is not). Pretty interesting stuff! Take some time to listen if you're interested in CSM election stuff.
There was a stake-holder meeting this past week, but unfortunately I missed it. Work got in the way. As I think I've mentioned before, California is not the ideal place for a CSM member to live. You get up early to find half the day gone in Iceland, Dolan likes to schedule meetings right at the time I should be leaving for work, and most of the Skype discussion is over when I get home. I stay as involved as I can with the live discussion, but it's tough sometimes.
Finally, CSM8 has chosen a date for our fifth Town Hall meeting. I'm currently working with DJ Wiggles of EVE Radio and Neville Smit of EVE University to make sure they can support us as they always do. Once that's done, I'll be announcing the date and time as always. Again, my hope is that the Minutes will be out before the Town Hall so that you all can ask us about them if you care to. By that time, there should also be some summer release dev-blogs to talk about. So look for that announcement next week.
And I think that's all for now!
EDIT (5/Mar/2014): I lied. One last thing: Trebor Daehdoow has announced on his blog that he is not running for CSM9.