WWDC Day 1

Hello, Keynote day.
Hello, long day.
Hello, crazy day.
Hello, fun day.

Today, as you might’ve guessed, was Keynote day! Running on only a few hours of sleep, the alarm went off shortly before 2am to lineup for the Keynote. Although getting up so early wasn’t completely necessary, it did add to the experience. There’s something about lining up in the cold at 2:30am for something you’re excited about that can turn introverts into semi-decent conversation holders. It was around 5:30 when the crowd really started to roll in, building steadily until about 8:30am when a few lucky student scholars were taken into the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium early and place in “special seats” which happened to be to the side of the stage. Unfortunately I was not part of this group, however when we did finally enter the venue and find seats I found myself three rows from the front of the public section. Not bad at all. (The entire first section was reserved for members of the press.)

What an experience the Keynote was. I mean, it was incredible! The atmosphere in the keynote hall from the very beginning was electric, and an amazing show it turned out to be. The changes introduced across the board to watchOS, tvOS, macOS (!!!), and iOS are profound enhancements that excite me unlike any software updates from Apple over the last couple of years. While this post is more about my experience at the conference and not about my thoughts on the announcements, I will just say that I am hugely impressed by watchOS 3.0 and am hugely excited to get serious about developing for the platform. It’s so incredibly cool to be able to say I’ve witnessed an Apple Keynote in person.

Following the Keynote, I hung around in the hall for a little longer and ended up meeting, talking to, and even getting a few selfies with, Craig Federighi, Kevin Lynch, Eddie Cue, and Chris Lattner. How cool, right? This was definitely a highlight of the day - meeting and talking to people I respect so much. On that note, just before lunch I ran into a few media personnel I’ve been following for years and it was also a great moment to introduce myself and tell them how much I admire their work (even though they’ve undoubtedly forgotten me by now - only 9 hours later.) The likes of Federico Viticci, Rene Ritchie, and Serenity Caldwell were very friendly and more than happy to give me a few seconds of their time - which I appreciated.

One thing I was fascinated by walking out of the WWDC keynote was to see the press get straight to their coverage - primarily video coverage. Seeing people such as Christina Warren and Walt Mossberg rush around getting videos posted on their respective sites was fascinating to witness. I don’t know if that’s something which *should* fascinate me, but it does.

The afternoon brought with it more lining up, this time for the second presentation of the day - the Platforms State of the Union keynote address. This is essentially a second version of the morning keynote which heavily targets developers and not the general public. It was definitely interesting to learn about the underlying technologies introduced in the new software such as watchOS 3.0 and iOS 10, however I must admit I was beginning to fall asleep by about halfway through this presentation. That’s not a criticism of the presentation, it was rather interesting, but more a comment on how tired I was. Somehow I made it through even further until the end of the Apple Design Awards at which point it was time to call it a day. The tour of Twitter HQ that was meant to be this evening ended up being cancelled for some reason or other, but I was probably too tired to attend anyway.

Fun fact of the day: Somehow I managed to get the first beta of iOS 10 to download onto my iPod touch via the incredibly congested Wi-Fi at the conference.

It was certainly an action packed day filled with exciting news, announcements, experiences, and opportunities. Hopefully today was just the start of what will a great week at WWDC. Bring on tomorrows sessions and labs!