-Tech Escapism"> All seven-night cruises, Mac Mania has been to Alaska, the Caribbean and Mexico, with trips starting at $1,600 for an inside cabin. The conference fee is waived for family members, accounting for $600 to $800 of the price. None of the classes offers certification. "We once offered certification in Microsoft and Cisco, but they were not well-attended," Bauman said.The next cruise, which will launch from Rome on July 20, will focus on the Mac and digital photography. Running over 10 nights, the ship will dock in Monaco, Spain, and Tunisia. Mile2, another company that offers vacation-education packages, is a training and consulting organization specializing in IT security. Most classes have about 10 attendees, with the size capped at 16. "The reason were doing the vacation classes is that were finding that when people attend our classes in their own town, they are constantly getting pages, called, and missing parts of their classes. We offer them [classes] far away so they can get through uninterrupted," Michael Roberts, president of Mile2, told eWEEK. Roberts says that students in Mile2 classes are from a wide range of industries and backgrounds, from IT technicians with U.S. government agencies to small banks and even a radio ministry that booked an employee who had received threats. Instructor-led classes are offered in digital forensics, disaster recovery, intrusion detection, counter-hacking and wireless training. Students have the option at the end to take CPTS (Certified Penetration Testing Specialist), CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional), CWNA (Certified Wireless Network Administrator), or CWSP (Certified Wireless Security Professional) certification exams, as well as dozens of other certification tests. Attendees can also submit their certificates to obtain CPE (continuing professional education) credits. Families are welcome on the trip, with Mile2 providing a staff member that works with the local tourism board to help families plan their free time. Package deals, with day trips and tours included, are also available. "We offer many fun evening activities. In one, after classes students can play Capture the Flag, using the hacking skills we teach them to work their way through files and servers real-time battles against the bad guys," said Roberts. A CPTS training trip to St. Lucia costing $2600 is planned for July, and another is planned for Indonesia in the fall. "The counter-hacking instructor is also a Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) member," Roberts explained. "Students can stay a second week and become a diver." Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, reviews and analysis on IT management from CIOInsight.com.
Some cruises have been phased out, such as the Java Jam, Oracle Odyssey and Perl Whirl, as demand for those subjects declined. But others have been added, like the Linux Lunacy, which incorporates some Perl content.