Most often camera companies introduce interesting new features/processors first on lower level DSLRs, even on compacts ad only then after "real-time" testing they bring these features onto higher grade bodies.
There is some truth to this. Canon's first IS lens was the consumer-grade 75-300mm. The 70-200 L's didn't get that upgrade until 6 years later. Also, the defunct camera feature eye-control focus was steadily working its way upward in the EOS line as well, stopping just short of the professional 1-series.
I will admit that the long life of the 50D (the longest reign as a current xxD so far) can imply that there's some serious development going on for the 60D. But it could have also been the 7D stealing development resources.
More recently though, Canon introduced video on the 5D2, which while not a 1-series, is certainly more on the professional side, if only because of the cost.
My personal wish list contains a flip screen (I don't like kissing the ground) and a flash commander. If the 60D includes both, I'm getting it. Though if the 1Ds5 turns out to be programmable, maybe I'll just wait for a 70D.
My current camera still works after all...