Geek Cruises are an initiative of Neil Bauman, a 42-year-old entrepreneur who used to work as a computer consultant for American pharmacies but decided to change his profession after attending a Star Trek cruise. The first-ever Geek Cruise set sail from Vancouver last Memorial Day for a weeklong passage through Alaska’s Inside Passage. The theme was ‘Perl Whirl 2000’, a name just as juicy as future cruise themes like ‘Database Discovery’, ‘Linux Lunacy’ and ‘Java Jam’.

The huge Holland-America ships used for these Geek Cruises carry about 1,500 geeks and 300 non-geeks. Activities on a typical cruise include a workshop for the spouses of ‘work-obsessed individuals’, stump-the-hacker quiz shows, and screenings of sci-fi B movie classics like Barbarella and The Tingler. Classes with names like ‘Cool tricks with Apache’, ‘Multitasking: Managing Process and Threads’, however, are the main activity on board.

For information regarding future geek cruises, see Citing:

relaxation for the body (and) stimulation for the mind

“You’re having breakfast on the deck of a luxurious cruise ship … Caribbean breezes blow gently as you savor your first cup of coffee. You check your watch. Great, you think, it’s almost time for the next XML seminar.”