US Airways firms up order for 20 A350 Airbus planes

From a maintenance/parts standpoint, it's definitely going to be a different type from the A330.

From a pilot/fleet type standpoint, it's too early to tell whether the FAA will grant a common type rating for the A330/350. Even if they do, there's the possibility that the airlines will keep them separate pilot-wise, ala the 737-200/300 or DC9/MD80. Of course, there would still be training savings from only having to do some sort of differences or transition training instead of a full initial for pilots moving between the two - at least judging from Airbus' remarks.

One interesting tidbit from the A350 order documents - the "hypothetical" city pairs used to specify minimum useful load and maximum fuel burn were PHL-TLV, PHL-NRT, PHX-NRT, and PHX-FRA.

I can't wait to snuggle up to that nice warm battery charger for an oceanic snooze! At least I won't have to worry about my snoring waking up the envoy passengers.

might I ask out of curiosity. If you're a pilot flying jump seat across the atlantic, could you occupy the crew rest area? Or would you have to have a seat in the back, or just the actual jump seat? If this is sensitive, just don't answer. Im thinking that it might be useful for folks to NOT know for sure how many personnel are in the flight deck area.
Apparently the crew rest area will still be under the cockpit. From the same article:

The new crew rest area will be under the cockpit. It allows direct access from the cockpit and a space that can be secured from the passenger area. The area is being put in place without a major disruption of the avionics bay. Only the inflight entertainment kit would have to be moved to the back of the aircraft, Andries says.

The avionics vent fans should make for some restfull sleep, since they make up about half the noise on the flight deck in cruise. Now a cockpit lav in the hell hole would suit me just fine.
This from Airbus CEO on the A350:

Humbert: No, we are completely on schedule with this model. But we do have a tense time behind us. At first, we thought a longer version of the A 330 would be sufficient. Now 90 percent of its parts are new, and it consists of completely new materials and new engines. Just as Boeing offers two versions of the 787, we also plan to sell two models, one with about 40 more seats than the other. Ours are bigger, faster and less expensive than the ones being marketed by our competitor in Seattle...

SPIEGEL: ... which also happens to be two years ahead of you in development. Major customers, like Lufthansa, have accused you of neglecting further development of a number of current models in favor of the more prestigious project, the A380, because you simply lack enough engineers.

Humbert: It'll all work out in the end. But I also take this criticism seriously, although it's far more applicable to Boeing than to us, especially when it comes to an aging product line. We have already hired many new people. In fact, we plan to recruit another 1,200 experienced developers in the next 18 months alone. But it's not always easy to find new talent, especially in Germany. This is why we have set up engineering centers in the USA, Russia and now in China, and why we also plan to go to India.

for the complete text from Der Spiegel,00.html