This is the way Macworld ends. Not with a bang, but a whimper.

Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) final January powwow was a bit of a dud. We already knew that Steve Jobs wouldn't be there, but many fans of Apple were still hoping for more than the product announcements they got. A $2,800 laptop? Upgrades to proprietary software? The long-overdue full embrace of DRM-free music tracks?

  • "Too bad they didn't spend more time on products that will make serious money," writes Tim Beyers.
  • "Some might say that the 2009 Macworld Expo keynote was boring," begins Anders Bylund, before rallying around the iTunes Music Store switch.

Either way, Macworld's timing during the same week as the Consumer Electronics Show is usually a thunder-stealer. The CES introduces some nerdy gizmo and Apple counters with pixie dust and magic sticks. However, this time around it was the CES that was landing all of the head-turning rollouts, especially in the convergence of digitally delivered video and home-theater systems.

As Apple offered tweaks to a spreadsheet program few will ever use, the rest of the world chimed in.

Who could have fathomed that we'd see the day when Apple was the boring one? Maybe this is Apple's final Macworld, because it figured that the lighter-flicking fanboys wouldn't be applauding for an encore this time.

Briefly in the news
And now let's look at some of the other stories that shaped our week.

  • Monsanto (NYSE:MON) delivered better-than-expected results, fueled by healthy growth of its seeds and herbicides. The economy may be iffy, but there is still land to tend to.
  • If you ever get tagged as the Enron of anything, you know it's not good. Satyam Computer Services (NYSE:SAY) is now being called "the Enron of India" after the Mumbai-based IT outsourcing specialist confessed to fudging its financials. Satyam's chairman overstated the company's financials over the years and, like Bernie Madoff, had no choice but to come clean when reality was spiraling out of control.

Until next week, I remain,

Rick Munarriz

Microsoft is a Motley Fool Inside Value pick. Netflix,, and Apple are Motley Fool Stock Advisor recommendations. Satyam is a former Stock Advisor pick. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz recommends windshield wiper fluid when trying to look back. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story, save for Netflix. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.