I still log in every few days to check on things. With no one playing, however, the clock is barely moving forward.
The core issue for ships is that after the Windjammer, which has a storage capacity of 900 piece goods + 2450 of other cargo (3350 total) in its holds, does not have a viable upgrade after it expires. This was discussed some time ago and if I recall it may have been addressed: the holds of the next generation of ships may have been updated already (but not in the pakset used for the server game). I have several thousand windjammers currently plying the seas -- when I have to upgrade to the 800 hold version (though faster than the windjammer), I will have to swell my flotilla by a factor of 3 or 4 just to equal what I am currently serving.
This issue aside, the main reason the game has gone stagnant for me is that there isn't anything to do. Every new industry is a coal power plant, and given that power supply seemed to be causing a lot of desynchs, we can't even servicing them.
Population is still slowly growing, and creates an opportunity to expand local services a bit, but other than that the map is saturated and there isn't much to do. With the only viable cross-map pax/mail transport being underground rail, which is locked at 120 km/h max speed until new tunnels arrive in 1959 (and then, only up to 135 km/h) we're pretty much finished there too, until high speed, high volume air travel opens up in the 50's/60's.
The sheer size of the download is a negative drawback as well, especially with the odd desynch still occurring. The transfer/load and initialization process takes a good 5 minutes, and when the game desynchs 5 minutes later, it's hard to find the desire to want to do another 5 minute transfer/load.