Last week saw the major Apple World Wide Developer Conference 2009 in San Francisco – and I was there for the Open University. With a great new iPhone release, for v3.0 and a new device, the 3Gs – an exciting mobile community was clearly forming around the more classic OSX developer niches. There were many who commented that in future Apple may end up with a dual conference, one dedicated to Mac and the other iPhone. Such is the power of the new platform that it seems pretty evident that this is needed.
As the new iPhone release now brings video, a compass and with many of the things that we have been asking for (like cut and paste, finally), Apple has responded with a very cool update. One critical piece for the Open University sees the opening of the iTunes Store to our offer in iTunes U. You can now get directly to OU tracks from your phone… over the air, anywhere. This sort of genuinely (!) and powerfully ubiquitous access to learning is going to be a very interesting new development for us.
Personally, the trip for me was epic! Having travelled all that way I was determined to get a good seat in the Keynote session so managed to secure my place in the queue at number 58 at 3:00am, a full 7 hours before the session started! Spirits were high as everyone was eager to see what Apple had to offer with most of the hype naturally centred on the iPhone. With the constant arrival of promotional representatives from other companies making use of a captive audience by handing out freebies the time passed quickly. The orderly rush to get into the Keynote session was bizarre. It was almost like a Wildebeest stampede in slow motion.
Once the Keynote was over it was down to the real business of the developer sessions, the labs, the sharing of ideas with fellow developers and trying to secure your own one-to-one with the key Apple developers. I cannot say much more about the event; as the Apple NDA is pretty serious; but suffice it to say the content is going to be invaluable to some of the things we are going to be doing in the very near future…