WWDC: The Canary in the Coal Mine??

I am a current iOS student at a tech school in Madison, WI. We recently began offering a degree in Mobile Application Development utilizing either iOS or Android. This seems to be a growing field and many teachers at our school have felt that we are leaving money on the table by not producing mobile application developers.

For the last three years or so, our school has sent two students to WWDC on a scholarship. Before, at least to the ones I spoke to, you filled out an application.

This year you were required to produce an app. The limited information I have at this time says that most people who received a scholarship application had an app in the store already.

I heard a story from someone saying that a few years ago a student won an award at WWDC and immediately started a company that makes millions of dollars a year, but still takes a class a semester to maintain his WWDC scholarship eligibility.

You know what, fine. Part of me was thinking about delaying my graduation to have another bite at the Apple next year when I have been doing this more than a few months.

However, a lot of this bothers my Spider Sense.

This year the WWDC tickets sold out in 90 seconds. This bothered a lot of developers who worked on Apple programs during the Dark Ages before the iPad.

I got my first Apple computer in 1984. I think I am one of the oldest people that exists who does not remember a time when they did not own an Apple computer. I have never owned a computer made by any one other than Apple. I remember as a child being confused as to why I could not just buy any software I saw because it said “IBM/Tandy” on the side. I stuck with them during the Dark Ages of the mid-90’s when their imminent demise was all but certain.

I am not alone in this. The estimates that I saw were that 20,000 people all logged into Apple to try and snag 5000 tickets to WWDC. I have no idea how many students applied for scholarships, but I would not be surprised if it was comparable to that number.

I might be displaying Hipster tendencies, but to me, when I see numbers like that it is a warning sign to me that it is time to leave the party.

My previous attempt at a career was in Journalism. When I was trying to break into that field I was told that there were 50 applicants for every job out there.

I am getting a sinking sensation that Apple development is becoming a similar situation. It is hot right now, which means that more people (like myself, I guess) are having a crack at it. When there are too many people going after something, it becomes less likely to succeed.

Look at law school. Law school used to be a stable, well paying career. Now it is over saturated by people trying to find somewhere to land in their professional lives.

I think something will change. My sense, along with recent news, tells me Apple is headed for a crash. I do not know if that means I need to move on to whatever comes next or if this is a readjustment period to purge excess developers. Either way, I am not certain that WWDC 2014 will attract the same people in the same quantities.

If anyone knows what comes next, let me know!! 🙂