In my opinion, Factorio's nature is automation, and therefore it allows & stimulates building very large bases. However, when my base reached (what I feel was) intermediate size, UPS started to drop. I played with a friend who has a faster PC (particularly: faster memory) than me, and whenever he would host, my game would never catch up, and when I would host, the game would eventually go below 30 UPS and he would experience lot's of issues (game not responding to his changes in direction while walking, etc, etc). Basically, we had two choices: start a new game (but we'd already done that a couple of times), or wait for optimizations before further expanding our base.
So, we promised to each other: lets put Factorio on the shelf for now and wait for optimizations before we pick it up again. This was just after a couple of big optimizations that you discussed on the FFFs, so we figured the timing was good. Then began the big wait. And I would see many, many FFFs on improved graphics, new objects, etc, etc. Of course, these were all very cool, but at the time, I couldn't really care less. More than anything, I just wanted to pick up the game again to expand my existing base, but because I needed the optimizations for that, I couldn't. I said to myself: "what are the devs thinking? Don't they realize that new/improved content is only nice when you can actually play your (big) base?"
One type of content that always gave me that feeling was the artillery train: to me, that felt like one weird, unrealistic object. So when I started reading the 'best Friday Facts ever', you can imagine my disappointment when it was about the artillery train. Again. And then... I reached the end of the FFF. And all my ill-feelings about new content and graphics were suddenly gone. In fact, knowing that I would now be able to build bigger bases, I was suddenly also very excited about all the new content that I wasn't able to appreciate before! And you know what: the artillery train actually looks super cool
I immediately sent my friend a message, quoting the upcoming release, and containing plenty of smilies.
In summary: devs, I think you did (and are doing) an awesome job! In a day and age in which big studios launch crappy early access games, only to leave them half-finished once enough copies have been sold, you manage to have an 'early access' game that has a higher quality than many officially released games. Also, your continued dedication to further improving the game - even though I'm sure you've already sold plenty of copies to cover initial investments - shows that you're not in it for the money. Naturally, you need to be able to pay the bills - and you deserve it -, but it feels that to you, it is all about creating a super awesome game. And about creating that awesome game together with an active community, that you involve through your FFFs and by actually listening to feedback from players regarding your ideas.
Keep up the great work, and enjoy your holidays: I know I will, with Factorio 0.16!