I suppose it depends on your viewpoint, but no matter who you are, another AU is in the bag… While I haven’t heard any hard numbers yet, the estimates I heard run from 5900-6800, but I think that those are all hearsay. Even as a newcomer, I can tell that it had been scaled back. From stories of hotel suites with sunken living rooms and free top-shelf booze last year to the reality of this year’s standard King or Double rooms and no “hard stuff” at all at the exhibit hall or parties. Add to that the “technical difficulties” the sound tech was having during the string concert at the AU Bash and the slightly (ok, seriously) cheesy Karaoke, and you have a formula for some disappointed AU-ers. That said, in this down economy I think Autodesk did a wonderful job. I think they kept quality classes and a reasonable price.
As far as I’m concerned, I thought the whole event was great. I feel so lucky to have been able to meet some of the hardest hitters in the industry face-to-face in an environment of sharing and collaboration. Isn’t that the point? Folks at AU freely share content, templates, ideas, processes, etc. It’s so exciting to be part of our industry right now.
I don’t think it was the glitz and glam of Vegas (it has more to do with the weekend spent with my family after the fact) but I am re-charged and re-energized by great conversations and information exchange with awesome people. The weather over the next few days looks promising for a couple of in-depth blog posts. Gotta love blizzards!!!