One thing I can say about roles is that each group will likely want one player (doesn't and maybe shouldn't be the same player always) as the tank. We know bosses and maybe all mobs in aggro to the player with the highest toughness in the monsters aggro range. Having an specific person who has some amount of pre-decided toughness that will always be higher than any other players toughness will be the best way to control where the boss stands and is facing (to avoid other players taking cleave damage and ensure others getting behind/side credit).
As far as filling roles we discussed in the raid meeting that we will not prohibit people playing the class they want but that they must be comfortable with that classes abilities, have exotic weapons and armor and ascended jewelry for their preferred build and have a somewhat good understanding of what they can bring to the table other than just damage. Additionally players were asked to remember that this is group content, so taking group benefiting traits/skills over self only benefiting is a good idea.
One other thing is that most gw2 roles are dps + something role, this is because not all encounters will need a lot of control or potentially a lot of healing, so doing an entire build around any one element other than maximum dps as a main build is not really a great idea.
So if a boss requires aoe, or aoe control, or boon stripping people know if they are able to alter their build slightly or majorly to help the team succeed. For that reason Soren is hoping to make raid teams have a mix of classes and experience levels.
There are a handful of us that are pretty knowledgeable on most classes and at least 1 very knowledgeable person for each class that are in for raiding so if you, your wife, or anyone else interested in raiding is unsure how to build your character, what gear to get, what other than damage you can offer the raid team feel free to ask me or someone else listed with the class your interested in on the spreadsheet. Building knowledge and confidence is the best way to prepare for raiding, since trying to figure out the mechanics and many failures(which is mandatory for well designed raids) can be taxing.
I too am an analytical strategist
I think I have answers for all of these based on our raid meeting but Soren or any other attendee can correct me if my memory is off.
-Two to Three days a week - Currently only planning 1 day per week , though it was stated if any one wanted to start a group that raids more often or any of Soren's constructed groups decides as a whole they want to add another night that would be fine.
-Two to Three hour sessions - Confirmed
-Allows people to be up to 5-10 mins late - The plan discussed at the meeting was that everyone shows up 30 minutes before the planned entering the raid time for planning and prep. 5-10 minutes late to planning would be fine but showing up after raid entrance time your spot will likely be given away to a sub for the night.
-Allowing people to play desired specs so long as it doesn't hinder party -No one will be forced to run a specific build against their will.
-Not requiring advanced notice for absences if emergencies happen ( Real Life over Game Life) -A GSCH thing in general, though advanced notice in non emergency absences is strongly requested.
-Slow progression however we have boss and event progression if not weekly than by-weekly ( three weeks at most for working one event at 2-3 days each, meaning 6-9 days spent on that event) -I'm not sure how how this can be a thing as some bosses are harder than others and we will definitely not be kicking raiders due to lack of skill.
-Move on without a person if they don't show up and don't cancel the raid - Confirmed