Blog Post

Missed out on a WWDC ticket? Try an alternative conference, one block away

Some Apple (s aapl) developers might be bummed if they didn’t score tickets to the Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, which sold out Thursday in record time — less than five minutes. But there is an alternative.

Targeting Apple developers and designers and other interested people, regardless of whether they are card-carrying iOS or Mac developers, the second-ever AltWWDC will go down on June 10-14 at San Francisco State University’s downtown campus. That’s a block away from Moscone West, the site of the official Apple event. The schedule is in flux, although the event does have a few speakers locked in, including Victor Agreda Jr. of the Unofficial Apple Weblog and Mac developers Mike Lee, Saul Mora and Brent Simmons.

The conference will go beyond code and design to also include business and legal issues and lifestyle topics, said an organizer, Rob Elkin. Still, organizers will display live blogs from bloggers covering the official conference keynote for all to see.

The first AltWWDC event was held last year, after Elkin wanted a place to work and talk with people while he was in San Francisco around the time of last year’s conference, even without a ticket to the official show. He and a friend, Judy Chen, put on the event, which attracted 70-80 people at the busiest times, Elkin said. It happened to be one of a few events going on at the same time as the official Apple conference. This year the alternative efforts, including IndieDevLab, are joining forces. Elkin expects many more people this time around. “As you can imagine, it’s a little bit hectic right now,” he said.

This year’s AltWWDC attendees won’t be there in person to see Apple folks reveal the nitty-gritty coding details about future platforms that could be announced, such as iOS 7 and OS X 10.9. But there will be talks and plenty of like-minded people to mingle with. Lunch and working space will be available, too, on a first-come, first-serve basis.

And it’s free! That sure beats WWDC’s $1,599 sticker price.