So apart from reading a lot about Yoshinkan, I also enjoy researching the Eastern European style of "real aikido", however there isn't a heap of information out there about it. My favourite combat style of Aikido to research is Lenny Sly Sensei of Tenshin Aikido, he has a YouTube channel called something like "the rogue warriors". He is extremely pragmatic and street orientated. He is not afraid to show street defence applications of aikido and I really enjoy and appreciate his work.
Some argue that Aikido is a spiritual art but it also truly is an effective martial art, as some people demonstrate. I think there is nothing wrong with focusing on the combat element of aikido (among other elements) because self defence and freedom from sudden unwelcome violence is a human right. Sometimes one can't avoid a fight, sometimes one can be attacked in the street - aikido is perfect for these situations. I believe more so than other martial arts.
What are your thoughts about the combat orientated styles of aikido out there? (or one could argue, just different interpretations of classic Aikido)
Effective is as effective does; spiritual is as spiritual does. If we're training with sincerity and humility, we're hopefully doing our best and making no assumptions. Beyond that it's about judging for ourselves how deep and wide we want to go in whatever it is we're studying. I have no problem with what others want to study or how they want to study, generally speaking.
If we're studying for fun, for self-defense, or whatever, hopefully we'll find people of like minds; but hopefully too, we won't make assumptions along the way which prevent us from making use of something useful. Take what you find, make it as useful as you can.
My two bits.
Great to "see" so many of you folks!