User groups are particularly active. Although many events are closed to non-members, many will open their doors on a trial basis to senior IT managers who are prospective members, so it is always worth asking.
The events likely to be attended by the largest number of corporate senior IT users this autumn are the CityIT conference from 6 to 9 November, with about 400 finance sector users on board the cruiseship Aurora, and Gartner Group's ITexpo Symposium in Cannes that same week, which will be attended by several hundred UK users. The CityIT event is free to users, while places at the Gartner event cost more than £2,000 each.
Local government IT users can look forward to their user group Socitm's three-day annual conference in Birmingham from 5 October, and the Oracle User Group will also hold its three-day annual conference in Birmingham, from 8 December.
IT directors and managers can rarely afford to take more than a day away from the office unless for a specifically focused need, such as BuyIT's two day DTI-backed masterclass on e-procurement on 25 November, or the National Computing Centre/ Impact Programme's series of two-and-a-half-day leadership academies.
The debate of the season will be held by the Real Time Club on 30 September on the future prospects for the IT industry, with chief scientist and president of the Royal Society Lord May contributing.
In addition, there will be a host of shorter events, such as the British Computer Society Elite group of IT directors' one-day conference on IT security on 16 September, or a range of events organised for IT directors by Computer Weekly's 500 Club and Infosecurity User Group.
There are several supply industry landmark events too, most notably the eight-day ITU Telecom World exhibition in Geneva, IDC's two-day top-level supplier-focused European IT Forum in Paris, and the main US supplier-oriented event of the year, Comdex Fall, in Las Vegas from 17 November.