Is there a definite timeline or not? Thank you.
We have publicly stated that we don't expect the code to be made publicly available in less than two months and that we would consider it a failure if we didn't make the code publicly available before the end of the year.
Right now, we've received a lot of public feedback and are trying to make changes responsive to that feedback. See this github issue for an example. It will be very hard to make significant changes after the source code is public.
(I'm an employee of Opencoin and one of the designers of the Ripple payment network. I'm speaking only for myself.)
There's no timeline, but they say it's "top priority".
My personal opinion is that the server code isn't ready yet. Nor is the client. Ripple is a very complex and ambituous piece of software. I think they need more programmers and a lot more polish and bugfixing before it is released. I consider myself at least of average intelligence and quite frankly, the order book in the client confuses the shit out of me. And I'm a huge fan of Ripple!