Rob Berkey and I will be spending the next few days at the ASMC Apple Specialist Conference in Chicago, Il. This is a meeting for about 200 Apple Specialists, various vendors, and Apple Inc. itself.

Here’s what happened so far. We showed up as Apple vice-president John Brandon wrapped up a speech and question and answer session. Berkey & I participated in several workshops relating to Managed Services, hiring procedures, retail management, integrating Mac and Windows, and much more.

A wi/fi issue caused much grumbling among participants – apparently, the conference was being billed $150 for every computer wirelessly connected to the network. This was a billing error, but it forced everyone off of the internet. Every few minutes, someone would open their computer’s wireless Airport software to see if the network was back.

Out of those 50+ computers, I only saw one iBook. The rest of the machines were 12,” 15,” and 17” Aluminum Powerbooks, with some 15 Mac Book Pros mixed in. Berkey pointed out that there are no 17” Mac Book Pros, even among the people who work directly for Apple.

I have a 15” Powerbook (one of the 1.67 GHz refurbs currently on our site.) For me, it’s just the right size for traveling to a conference like this.

Palm Treos are hot in this crowd – making me wish I had one even more. People’s wardrobes are all over the place. Black polo shirts slightly predominate, with a smattering of business suits and tee shirts. Predictably it’s mostly men here, with about 15 – 20 women. The women here are very active participants in the workshops.

When asked to name a defining characteristic, someone shouted out “I like Starbucks.” It wasn’t me.

It’s a lot of fun being around these Apple professionals. It’s a community, and there is a lot to learn here… more soon!

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