Another Apple WorldWideDevelopersConference has come and gone. Yet again it was sold out, with well over 5000 attendees. That makes for some crowded sessions, and even more crowded mens rooms. This is a relatively expensive conference to attend, but it’s really more like training than a ‘conference’, in that the sessions are fairly technical in nature, and span the bulk of the day, with a fairly small window for ‘networking’. Still, it’s a $1000 conference to attend, which isn’t bad, but of course the SF hotels hear ‘Apple’ and up their rates, so you’re looking at $1500-2000 for lodging, plus food in SF plus a pretty long flight (for us on the right of the mississippi anyway).
But I think it’s still worthwhile, especially for folx like myself who wear multiple hats. I can attend ‘IT’ sessions (system management/administration), iphone developer sessions, web developer sessions, osx developer sessions, and general sessions. Of course that leads to another problem, deciding which sessions to attend. Like any conference, the session title and description can leave a lot to be desired. What might sound interesting can easily turn out to be remedial or just bad. And sometimes attendance isn’t correctly anticipated, so the room quickly fills up and if you had to wait in the long mens room line, you won’t get a seat.
I think it’s great that they let actually engineers out of the cave to do the presentations. Some of them are even quite good at it (some, well, not so much). But considering the vast amount of time they apparently spend preparing and rehearsing, I wonder if they might not be better served to consider partnering with some non-apple folx. They really need to expand further the offerings, and probably establish a winter version of the event as well, there is certainly enough material.
Last year they claimed they would have podcasts of all the sessions available shortly after the conference. It wound up taking 7 months, and by that time a lot of the information in the sessions had lost its value. This year they promised to have it out in ‘a couple of weeks’. That seems more appropriate, but we’ll see if it holds true next week. Apple does have a product, which they even had sessions about at WWDC, called Podcast Producer (now at version 2) which they claim can automatically create a podcast from a lecture in near-real-time. One would tend to think that perhaps it doesn’t work, given the delay, but as with most oddities at Apple, I suspect Apple Legal is involved somehow.