Curiouser and curiouser
It'll be curious to see how this development plays out next year. The trade shows themselves I would imagine are quite the burden on even the most well heeled of companies, so that's not as much of a surprise. If it turns out that Jobs doesn't take center stage next year that will indeed add a ton more fuel to the rumors that he is stepping down from his primary role in Apple.
As the saying goes, "may you live in interesting times". Times are indeed interesting for Apple right now. With this development and the potential repercussions of it I would say times are doubly interesting for the house that Woz and Jobs built.