One of the really interesting people I met at PopTech is Shel Israel. He and his partner have a business where they attend about 30 technology conferences each year and they send out a newsletter that summarizes the key points of the conference. While I wouldn’t recommend that you skip a conference like PopTech if you can make it, I would say that, if you can’t make it, then reading Shel’s summary is a great alternative.
In addition to PopTech he also covers TED and Demo. If you think you might be interested in his newsletter send him an E-mail and he’ll send you some free samples. I think he’ll even give you a great rate if you decide to subscribe.