Long time fan and player since the last alpha. Let me start out by saying this game has so much potential and is already in a fairly enjoyable and playable state. I don't want to comment on stuff like performance and bug fixes since many have pointed this out already and I think DU staff have their priorities on getting this on-rails asap.
I want to talk about communication mostly, and immersion, and I get the second subject might be a bit further down the line:
Communication - critique:
One of the things I always think impacts general interest in a game and keeps players peeking for updates, especially alpha/beta or early releases, is clear and open communication and roadmaps. Now, I know there is a roadmap, but I want to be frank about this; it doesn't do a good job of peaking my interest. Its vague, incomplete and simply all over the place. Even the implementation of the poll-system, while a very good addition, isn't cutting it.
Communication - solution:
I believe the roadmap should be a lot more detailed and divided into short, mid and long term. On the short term there should be details about implementations in the upcoming weeks, with dates!; think of gameplay tweaks, bug fixes, small gameplay additions etc. On the mid-term, say months, there should be a list of upcoming implementations of small to medium systems/gameplay additions/graphical updates. And on the long-term you can keep the descriptions as you have them now in the roadmap, with focus on big changes and implementations, add-ons and serious gameplay changes.
All-in-all, there needs to be a better grasp of what the team is focusing on. To take it to another level, if you're working in a scrum kind of way, just share the sprints as short-term roadmaps (just an idea). And all of these need to be realistic, the more you need to push stuff backwards, the more you create a backlog and frustration with the players. Its better to start with small increments and deliver, than vice-versa. Its difficult to assess what you guys/girls are working on back there, while that has many people very excited as well if they knew.
Immersion - feedback:
I'll keep this one shorter, but after playing the game for a LOT of hours in the past months, it has come to my attention that a lot is missing in the game which should create more immersion. This is mostly small stuff: sound effects mostly, but also visual effects (like the missing animations of industry)... The galaxy and planets feel deserted, even with the amount of players flying around. Its just not... alive. And there should be random stuff happening... nothing major perse.
Just my 2 cents that I had in the back of my head and needed to write off.
See you in game!