When the 2009 DevDays were announced one of the primary goals (from my understanding) was to have a useful and accessible (in terms of time and cost) conference.
The 2011 conference, while still reasonably affordable for the event, will incur significantly more cost for hotel, airfare and meals. Thus, in my opinion, defeating the point of the "accessible" conference.
An additional day along with the added costs make it very unlikely that I will be able to make it to the conference. It is now lumped in with all the other conferences that I won't go to.
$399 event cost
$500 airfare cost
$150 hotel (1 night)
$100 meals for 2 days
So we're talking close to $1200 and two days rather than $99 and one day.
I am sorry to see this happen. I realize it was a lot of work for Joel and Co, but perhaps there is another solution. Perhaps not for 2011, but maybe in 2012. Or, someone else can take up the helm and bring back the spirit of an affordable, local one day conference.
For the record - I was at the Boston DevDays - it was an easy drive for me and would have paid double for the event. However, making a commitment to a further destination, more time and significantly more money just doesn't make it compelling. I'd rather just spend the time looking for more sources online.
I am more than happy to pay $399 for the event itself - the issue is the other additional costs due to fewer venues.
Well, the 2011 is officially canceled. That is a shame. I actually just bought my tickets a few weeks ago and made a commitment with my own money and time away form work. (D.C. - with some museum tours the days afterwards, etc)
I do hope that the folks at SO/SE/DevDays will continue to look for good dev conference alternatives. I was really happy with the 2009 Boston event and I am very hopeful for another.
Thanks for the good effort guys and keep trying - I will be at the next one if it is close enough to me.