That is very welcome news, providing they are committed and focused on actual testing rather than just browsing new features that should ensure a problem free release, unlike RM4 which was a disaster imo.
I remember the RM4 release very well. There were two beta test periods. The first one was what I would describe as a pretty standard beta test, with selected users and privacy agreements and so forth. The second one was a public beta. I participated in both beta tests, and I found the beta test experience with RM4 to be very positive. I found very few problems and the beta version of RM4 worked great for me.
But much to my surprise, when I started using RM4 for real, I started encountering a lot of pretty major problems. The same thing happened to most RM4 users. How could this have been? Well, during both beta test periods I was just playing around and trying things. I wasn't doing real research. I couldn't because there was no guarantee that any data I entered could be carried forward to the production RM4 after it was released. My playing around was was simply not a good enough test, no matter how thorough I thought my playing around was nor how much time I put into it.
It took nearly 6 months for RM4 really to become stable after it was officially released. I don't expect RM8 to be any different. The reason won't be because of any lack of skill and competence and working really hard on the part of the developers. And the reason won't be because of inadequate testing or lack of interest on the part of the beta testers. Rather, it's because software projects of the magnitude of RM8 are really hard and beta testing is never as thorough (and can't be) as is real production use.
Also, I think part of RM4's problem was that it tried to introduce far too many new features all at the same time. I think it would have been better to release the product on the new platform and new user interface much sooner and with many fewer new features. In other words, keep it simple, make it reliable, do add a few new features but not too many, and get it out the door. Then release the new features in a regular and more measured fashion over a period of years. And I mean really do add the new features as time passes and not just talk about them, like adding dynamic groups and fixing the typographical errors in the source templates.
It's hard to know for sure, but I fear that RM8 is this same history repeating itself. Again, I think it would have been better to release the product on the new platform with the new user interface much sooner and with many fewer new features. In other words, keep it simple, make it reliable, do add a few new features but not too many, and get it out the door. And then on a regular basis, keep adding new features. Don't talk about adding them, but really add them.
I could be wrong about the impending 6 months before RM8 is stable, and I hope I am wrong. I do know that I will do much more personal testing with RM8 before I commit my production data to it than I really did with RM4.