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To WWDC or not to WWDC?

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There is an interesting discussion going on right now on the macsb (Macintosh Software Business) discussion list about whether Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) is worth it or not. I should say, not whether it's worth it in general, but whether it's worth it for the small, indie developer. When you factor in a $1300-1600 ticket, hotel in and flight to and from San Francisco, and all of the inevitable peripheral expenses, it can really add up for an independent developer. I know it does for me.

Like Mike Zornek, I too have recently gone indie with a combination of consulting and shareware development. And I also went to Wolf's fantastic C4 conference last October in Chicago. As my first Mac conference, I had an amazing time and came home with so much energy -- in fact, that week I made the decision to go indie. Combine that with a great time in January at the Leopard Tech Talk. It wasn't just the tech, but also the general level of enthusiasm and getting to meet lots of other developers as well. I was sure I'd be at WWDC.

On the other hand, though, saving my pennies and waiting until such time as it's easier to go -- less of a stretch -- is probably a good idea. As much as I'd like to be in the audience when The Steve takes the stage and wows us all with the next insanely great developer thing, perhaps it's not in the cards. On top of an ADC Select Membership, it's just difficult for an independent starting out.

It's times like these that I'm really grateful for more affordable conferences like South By Southwest and C4. Also, I'll reiterate my ever-present offer: if you're a Mac developer in the Washington, DC area, feel free to drop me a line and we can put our brains together over a drink sometime. It's the next best thing to the big conferences in my book.

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