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A few thoughts on where Macworld can go in 2010.
I disagree with your suggestion that the show needs to focus on vendors and selling to consumers. To me, and thousands of others, it’s the conferences that are the factor that distinguishes Macworld from visiting an Apple store or mall. Try going to an Apple store and finding out about X-sam, ARD, automation, color in media, IT, or any technical topic that requires depth of instruction and time. At Macworld you can attend a two-day 14-hour hands-on class, taught by experts, about subjects that actually matter to making your living. I would prefer that Macworld minimize the focus on the consumer who’s just looking for a cheap price on gadgets, and instead focus on the education and discussions that enhance and strengthen the core of the Mac community. Without the Mac community, Apple is just another Sony and will eventually become more vulnerable to the ups and downs of the consumer buying cycles. It’s the Mac community that supports a company through difficult periods. Right now Apple is riding high. Just wait until 2009 sinks in and Apple’s over-dependance on the consumer, to the point of ignoring professionals, exposes Apple to the pitfalls of the economic collapse that it upon us.
I agree with Sid. MW can morph into a variety of formats. However, the conferences will likely be the backbone of the event. There are any number of conferences held every year in the US. The basic structure is the same. A strong technical program attracts the committed members of the community. Vendors then gather to exhibit to these people. Additional people come just to see the exhibits.