What are Your “Must Attend” Conferences?

Now that I’m back full-time in the US, it’s not such a chore to get to conferences. I can even attend conferences that I’m not speaking at, which is something I seldom (if ever) did in the 8 years I lived in New Zealand. Yet it can be an excellent opportunity to connect with really interesting people and to expand my thinking. Last month, I attended BlogHer, to listen to my daughter Chloe, and I also made the trip to San Francisco for WordCamp. This month, I almost went to Gnomedex, but I hadn’t acted soon enough and it had sold out by the time I went to register.

Here is a list of conferences that I haven’t been invited to speak at and would love to attend:

These conferences are exclusive and expensive — and worth even penny. For those who can’t swing the invite or the budget, there are free podcasts of past talks. Pop!Tech has their Pop!Casts, TED has their TED Talks, SXSW has their SXSW Podcasts, and IT Conversations has covered a number of conferences including Web 2.0 2005/2004, Accelerating Change 2005/2004, and ETech.

How does your conference schedule look? What are some of your important conferences that you feel you have to attend?