Chris>"How ROL will softload their RISC OS 4 kernel and keep the RISC OS 5 device drivers is still on the drawing board."
I suspect they won't implement it in the way the above sentence suggests. The only workable way would probably be to leave RO5 largely in place (kernel, drivers etc.,) and have new Select modules softloaded that provide the "extended" functionality - but still using RO5 for all the other stuff. Some of the Select extensions may be amenable to that - others might need a bit of "work".
That all having been said - has ROL confirmed that they are satisfied that the required "100" commitments have been made? If your suggestion that ROL are still at the "drawing board" stage for something as fundemental as softloading on RO5 then I wouldn't be optimistic about seeing RO5 Select anytime soon.
The other relevant point is I don't think *any* RO5 users would want to lose any of the advantages it provides just in order to softload Select - I certainly know I wouldn't