This is fascinating: in a time where the common wisdom is that “big” industry conferences have met their doom, the Game Developer’s Conference has just announced that they are doubling the size of their floor space (i.e.: making money from people spending tens of thousands of dollars in setting up booths and glad-handing strangers walking by) and is projecting 12,500 attendees will walk through Moscone Center in San Francisco.
I think the Software Development Conference peaked at around 16,000 attendees circa 1999 and is now far smaller. That the GDC, which used to be a wonderfully intimate event, has surpassed CMP’s flagship development event is really striking.
Jamil Moledina and crew have done a wonderful job of growing the GDC and making it a real exception to CMP’s overall clumsiness in transitioning to the Internet era.