Have you ever fallen asleep during a conference in a convention center or hotel? Theresa, relentless defender of decorum, has. Neil, staunch supporter of lifelong learning, has. And out of those slumbers, the InSight Cruises concept emerged: a vital, engaging learning community at sea, with opportunities for exploration and adventure in port. We all have travels in common: the quest for knowledge, the search for inspiration, the hunger for new ideas and information. And we all like to relax, in our own ways. Neil Bauman and Theresa Mazich aimed to create an experience where left and right sides of the brain vacation together.
InSight Cruises was founded in 1999, and its maiden voyage, Perl Whirl, sailed in May 2000. Since Perl Whirl, guests who value learning for its own sake have gathered on over 50 cruise conferences. Our clients have taught us that while sometimes it's about going deeper and higher, and sometimes it's about pursuing confidence in and mastery of a discipline, it's always about discovery and self-discovery.
Neil is the CEO of InSight Cruises. He had an "Aha!" moment while reading a Perl programming book on a cruise ship in Alaska in June 1998. Neil founded InSight Cruises one year later.
InSight Cruises taps the growing worldwide demand for adult education that encompasses knowledge acquisition and relaxation. Neil applied his rare blend of expertise in business strategy, business development and partnerships, operational innovation and publishing, and his creative strengths to develop InSight Cruises and its events.
For eighteen years prior to founding InSight Cruises, Neil was co-founder and President of ComputerTalk Associates, Inc, a publisher of trade magazines in vertical markets in healthcare.
More to the point, Neil's inexorable affinity for computing devices and commerce surfaced at the age of 4, when he learned to use his maternal grandparents' abacus.
Around this time, Neil also learned to play chess. Ten years later, in 1969 he joined the Manhattan Chess Club and was honored, shortly thereafter, to have one of his games published in The New York Times. In 1971, Neil defeated RCA's David Sarnoff Research Center's mainframe computer in a game of chess — the first person to do so at the RCA Center.
This experience — melding technology and chess — fueled Neil's interest in computers which led to his purchase of an HP-65 the following year, while a junior in high school. At the same time, Neil was laying the groundwork for his computer knowledge learning programming on a PDP-10 at Rider College in Lawrenceville, NJ. Efficiently and effectively, Neil used his first few semesters at college to dispel any parental illusions about a career in medicine, and proceeded to expand his collection of punch cards while building a text editor and an IBM 360 assembler.
The first DOS-based computer Neil owned was a DEC Rainbow, which is probably still running, somewhere. He became a Macintosh owner in 1986, and has since established an operating minimum of 1.75 Macintosh computers per human family member.
Neil has become widely known for "Neil's Law" which states that the potential loss of computer functionality is the only situation in which a discussion of "What If?" scenarios is permitted.
He credits his love of travel to his abacus-owning grandparents who, by the time Neil was 10, had flown over 500,000 miles.
Mr. Bauman holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Physics from Franklin and Marshall College (1978). He was born in Riverdale, Bronx, New York in January 1955. Neil and his wife, Theresa, a nerd herself, have two children.
Chris is an independent graphic artist who designs and creates all of InSightCruises.com webpages and print pieces. He began his career as a Technical Illustrator employeed with a Fortune 100 computer-mainframe manufacturer. In the early 1980s, Chris worked creating computer graphics on a "mini-mainframe" — actually a Computer-Assisted Design system — modified for technical illustration. The CAD system was $360,000 not including output devices.
In September 1988 Chris was downsized at about the same time as he stumbled across the Macintosh. He quickly did the math: "For $15,000 I get three-to-five times the capabilities of the $360,000 CAD system. Hhmm ... what a perfect time to start my own business!" Today, Chris has over 25 years of experience creating computer-generated graphics. He has a black belt in color correcting images for four-, five-, and six-color printing projects. In addition, Chris has extensive experience with all kinds of output devices: large format for display booths, 35mm film plotters for audio/visual, gamma adjustment for video graphics, and low- and high-end film plotters for printing — and the output of all these different devices requires, naturally, some kind of color correction.
Theresa Mazich is Commodore and COO of InSight Cruises. Too many sleepy afternoon continuing education lectures; windowless, anonymous hotel meeting rooms; and schedules without a break to enjoy the host city convinced her that interactive education in beautiful places could solve a widespread problem. At about the same time, Neil Bauman reached a similar conclusion, and soon afterward coincidentally discovered the pleasure of cruising. A business concept soon followed.
InSight Cruises taps the growing worldwide demand for adult education that encompasses knowledge acquisition, a global outlook, and relaxation. Theresa brings diverse experience and perspectives rooted in her native profession, health care, and, well, her background as a nerd. Prior to founding InSight Cruises, Theresa practiced medicine as a board-certified dermatologist, and actively studied medical computing. She set aside clinical practice and applied her knowledge and experience as a physician for 10 years working in medical computing, developing, marketing, and selling healthcare software and databases in domestic and international markets.
Theresa credits her love of learning to the value her parents placed on reading and being well informed. Her enjoyment of travel grew out of the countless childhood hours she spent reading travel picture books borrowed from the Thomas Beaver Public Library in Danville, Pennsylvania, and her great-great-Aunt Nell's insistence that Theresa visit Havana someday.
264 S. Meridith Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91106
Whether or not you live in California (which is regarded as having the strongest consumer protection laws in the USA), California State law protects you in your travel arrangements with InSight Cruises. International Technology Conferences, Inc. doing business as "InSight Cruises" is registered with the California Attorney General's office of the California Department of Justice. (Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.) The California Department of Justice has identifying information on the owners of InSight Cruises, our relationship with cruiselines, and access to the International Technology Conferences' bank trust account (which the California Seller of Travel law requires). International Technology Conferences' registration, which we renew every September, is #2065380-40. The California Attorney General's Seller of Travel FAQs are here: http://ag.ca.gov/travel/faqs.htm.
And if you are a resident of California, when you do business with a registered California Seller of Travel, you can file claims with the "Travel Consumer Restitution Corporation" (or "TCRC") in cases of wrongful taking of money, bankruptcy filing, or closure of business. The TCRC, a nonprofit organization, was created to review claims and administer the Travel Consumer Restitution Fund. You can get the details at: www.ag.ca.gov/travel/consumer.htm.
How does California Seller of Travel law keep you safe? The Seller of Travel Act protects you several ways. It requires:
And while we're at it...
IATAN (International Airlines Travel Agent Network) promotes professionalism and administers meaningful and impartial business standards to travel industry professionals. IATAN accreditation is voluntary, and means that a travel business consciously works to assure you, its customer, of its legitimacy and commitment to the travel profession.
IATAN accreditation tells you that InSight Cruises is a serious, reputable, business-like, professional seller of travel. InSight Cruises is an IATAN Travel Sales Intermediary (TSI) agency. Our IATAN number, which can be found in the IATAN database by cruise lines, airlines, and hotels worldwide, is: 05-701953.
IATAN accredited agencies must demonstrate that:
CLIA (Cruise Lines Internationl Association) is a nonprofit organization which "promotes the excitement, desirability, diversity, and high value of cruise vacations". We agree with that view! CLIA educates us about many aspects of the cruise industry, which helps us prepare a smooth running, pleasant vacation for you.
CLIA has industry organizations members that focus on cruise lines' environmental awareness and adherence to regulations; security; safety; medical facilities, and public health. CLIA member organizations work with two United Nations agencies: the International Maritime Organization, which is responsible for improving the safety of international shipping and preventing marine pollution; and the International Labor Organization, which governs international labor and employment practices and sets crew standards to provide a good work environment for onboard cruise personnel.
264 S. Meridith Ave., Pasadena, CA 91106 • 650-787-5665 • Copyright 2009 © InSight Cruises