“following/guarding” caravan automatically
The UI will be one of the last things that will be done, at least this was the last statement I saw about it. It will be reworkerked perhaps even completely since there is almost no content in that would change the ui. Since the dev team is small they decided not to devide the resources to the everchanging ui untill the game is feature complete so it will take just one time to make it and a bit of tweaking. I personaly feel that there could be things added even at this point even if temporarely, still I sure can understand the effectiveness of the masterplan.
The caravan follow, absolutely agree with you, and did write it somewhere. Sometimes it is better to run around especially at known bandit or other enemy zones, but mostly it is a needless ton of clicks and micromanagement. There definetely has to be a follow caravan order in some form that can be triggered on at any time and triggers off when you press anywhere on the map.