Well if you end up contributing let me attempt to clarify a bit more for you to pass on to others, from one regular person to another. These subsets aren’t arbitrarily put in between major releases and it is literally just progress that would have had to happen on the way to that major release anyway. So no extra stops or wastes of time or gimmicks. The difference is that they are able to test it along the way in a coherent manner and let the community get their hands dirty and get a grasp on API’s (how their apps can take advantage of the networks features to accomplish the apps purpose).
Overall it’s beneficial to both Maidsafe and community devs. They get the hang of improving QA and release process, streamlining etc, get community feedback, community devs get a head start which should help the network launch with apps and so on and so fourth.
Looking forward to see what you come up with!