This week at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, the Macworld Expo kicks off.
Three years ago, this would have been huge news. Hotels would be packed, the press would be buzzing and fans would be staking out what portion of the sidewalk they wanted to sleep on the night before the keynote.
Now, very few people seem to have any interest in the show and only a handful even know when it kicks off (the expo floor opens on Thursday, in case you were wondering.) Once a massive occasion that stole headlines away from even the CES superconference, Macworld is now a footnote on the tech conference calender.
That will happen when the basis for your entire conference suddenly decides to abandon you.
Two years ago, Apple announced that it was pulling out of the show. In 2009, Steve Jobs was replaced by Phil Schiller as the keynote speaker and in 2010, Apple pulled out of the show entirely.
From a publicity standpoint, this was devastating to the show. Where once major news networks lined up to cover the Steve Jobs keynotes, Macworld is now something of a niche affair. Looking at what it was just a few years ago, the more recent incarnations of the show seem a bit like a ghost town.
That doesn't mean that the show is not worth attending if you're a Macintosh devotee. The expo floor is as vibrant as ever, if not a bit less crowded. There's not a massive Apple booth with revolving glass cases of the most recently-unveiled iPhone or MacBook, but there are still all sorts of cool accessories and software from companies that have been devoted to the Mac platform for decades in some cases.
If you're a Mac fan and can make it out to the Moscone Center this week, Macworld is still very much attending. The news may not be there anymore, but the community most certainly is.
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