Long Beach, that is.
Chris Anderson, TED curator and co-founder of the Sapling Foundation, has announced that the revered gathering is leaving its venerable Monterey Conference Center digs next year and moving to the arts & cultural center in Long Beach, Calif.
Long-time attendees have been long-time gripers about the Monterey location, which can only hold 500 people in the main hall. Though many prefer the simulcast room, allowing conversation, mobility, and cool displays, there's inevitably a feeding frenzy whenever a single seat opens up upstairs. Many of the same cliques of attendees attend the same parties at the same restaurants every year, which can get a little old after a dozen years or so.
TED2008 has 1320 registrants - with 3000 people on the waiting list. TED2009 will expand to 1450 (or 1500; the announcement says both), all of whom, Chris says, can be in the main hall at the center in Long Beach. There will still be a simulcast room, though, for the roamers.
Believe it or not, 09 will sell out within weeks, if history is any guide. So if you really want to go, click on your invite (you are getting one, right?) the moment it arrives, and pay your fee. How much? $6k for standard attendance, $12k for "donors" (seat preference, pre-conference schmooze with speakers), and $100k for "patrons" (5 year membership, half the original 10 years patrons used to get).
Still unknown is how TED's long-range simulcast will work this year; the 2008 pressure valve is the use of the Aspen Institute in Aspen, Colorado, to house people willing to pay $3000 to watch all but one session from remote. Maybe next year they can get a little closer - like, say, San Diego...