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Apple conferences through the millennium

Apple's CEO Steve Jobs will kick off next month's Worldwide Developers Conference, the company's annual confab for IT professionals and application developers. It's scheduled for June 11-15 in San Francisco.

Details of what Jobs will talk about are -- as always -- state secrets at the company. The only hint: "Apple plans to show developers a feature-complete version of Mac OS X Leopard and give them a beta copy to take home for final testing."

Sure to outshine any talk of Leopard, however, will be whatever Jobs says about the new iPhone, Apple's entry into the mobile smart phone market. The iPhone, which has siphoned developers from Leopard, is to go on sale in June. Leopard, by contrast, was due out about now but has been delayed six months.

Here's a look back on what Steve Jobs has announced at previous Worldwide Developers Conferences.

WWDC 2006: Jobs unwraps an early look at Mac OS X 10.5, Leopard; promises that "secret" features will be revealed only when the new operating system ships.

WWDC 2005: Jobs drops a bombshell, telling the audience that Apple will migrate its hardware from PowerPC processors to chips made by Intel. His promise: "We intend to release Leopard at the end of 2006 or early 2007, right about the time Microsoft expects to release Longhorn [now known as Windows Vista]."

WWDC 2004: Jobs talks up the next Mac OS X, Version 10.4, dubbed Tiger, which will replace the Panther in the first half of 2005. He touts Tiger's new Spotlight search technology. Apple pokes fun at rival Microsoft with banners that read "Redmond, start your photocopiers" and "Redmond, we have a problem." He also signals disappointment with IBM as Apple's processor supplier, presaging his big announcement a year later. "IBM has done very well relative to the rest of the industry, but less than we'd hoped."

WWDC 2003: Jobs lauds the upcoming Power Mac G5 as the world's fastest personal computer. And it's "just the beginning," he says. He also promises that Panther (Mac OS X 10.3) will be out by the end of the year and talks up iTunes, the online music store Apple had launched just eight weeks prior, saying it has already sold five million tracks.

WWDC 2002: Jobs wears black -- big surprise -- to hold mock funeral for Mac OS 9. "Today we say farewell to OS 9 for all future development, and we focus our energies on developing for Mac OS X," Jobs says. Jaguar, aka Mac OS X 10.2, will be out by the end of the summer.

WWDC 2001: Jobs gives his reason for returning to Apple. "I came to Apple almost four years ago, and one of the big reasons I came was because I didn't want to use Windows for the rest of my life. That involved making some better hardware and software." Mac OS X, which Apple debuted two months before the conference, now sports more than 600 native apps, claims Jobs. From now on, he says, all Macs will ship with Mac OS X.