Some numbers: 7001 people are registered to attend Autodesk University 2008 in Las Vegas December 2-5. This includes over 350 people who self-identify themselves as "Plant Design" folk. Early registration ends this Friday October 10!
For some reason the class search for Plant Design only returns 2 classes, but I assure you we are planning at least 6 courses, plus focus groups and test drives. I myself am teaching two sessions that aren't on the list. (Databases, sigh.)
Usually I would write volumes on why AU is an excellent conference well worth your time. It's training and networking and a whole lot more. But I'm way behind at work and still hope to get out of here in time to catch some of the debate. So I'd refer you to a set of podcasts that make the case for attending from a variety of angles, and also a written page by the always awesome Lynn Allen.
(Actually, truth be told, I'm not that interested in the debate, but in true SF style it is an excuse to go to a bar and drink every time a candidate says "my friends" or "change". )