When are saves committed to disk? It appears to be similar to most emulators: when the ROM is changed, or the emulator quits.
But systems crash too often for that; and it's a hassle to qiut and restart every time you save to make sure it gets written to disk. Write frequently.
Next: what's the point of releasing source a version behind? It defeats half of the point of releasing source at all. People can't contribute because they're always working on out-of-date source; there's no way of telling what's been changed in the newer version, especially on relatively new features. (The other half is sharing code, and that's slowed considerably--all of the new stuff gets delayed, and can't be reused until it's released.)
I can't think of anything gained by delaying code deliberately.