I'm glad that production focused people will actually have a role in the game. And from what I read of the new economy FAQ, it seems they'll be important from start of the game to the end of the game. Really getting tired of streamlined MMORPGs or the fakes that claim to be sandbox but put restrictions on the production side while giving equipment out through the use of NPC quests. Really hated how it was pointless to raise a crafting skill while raising the character or it was "better to wait till endgame" before crafting or similar type of play.
On another note, I do hope that you guys don't reveal EVERYTHING about the game through these updates. Part of the fun of RPGs is supposed to be exploration and discovering hidden things. I understand that people like me that enjoy finding things on our own instead of being led by the hand is a minority though so if it doesn't happen, whatever. Same thing I've been doing with most other games and move on~