Well, I was looking at the patch preview for the coming patch, and boy is the list getting long! From what I can tell, the next patch is all they'll really need to release Open Beta without shame. I anticipate that they'll start sign-ups shortly after this patch hits, with Open Beta a week or two after that.
Before everyone PANICS and starts demanding stuff, before people start complaining about how they're burned out on waiting... take a deep breath and remember that stress accomplishes nothing. You do yourself no favors obsessing over things beyond our control, and everything about WoW is beyond our control. Any negative emotions you feel are ones you allow yourself to feel, and their only purpose is to make you feel bad about things you cannot influence. So take a breather. Some herbal tea, perhaps. And cool down.
Now, a quick summation of what will be in the next patch:
--Hunter Talents and improvements
--Pally Talents and improvements (very cool changes!)
--Some *awesome* changes to the warrior
--Tons of tradeskill polish
--Lots more quests... newbie zone polish, plus additional Horde content in the re-vamped Kalimdor zones (ashenvale, desolace, stonetalon, etc.)
--More flight paths
--The racial traits are currently in internal testing, they aren't some nebulous feature still in concept.
Look right here at my screen *tabs to internal WoW build*... racial traits, for every race. I see 'em. =]
--Worry not, the Felhunter and Infernal are also in this push. :0
--The PvP rewards will also be in this push actually. =]
In addition, the full scoring mechanisms will be in for the honor system, along with some key refinements to how the honor system works.
Now go re-read my second paragraph... then discuss amongst yourselves.
"The devil's greatest trick is to convince us that he does not exist."
Evil is real. Aku soku zan.