Note: This is a followup to http://www.lx-850.com/?p=325 so it might make more sense if you read that first…
I only do this once or twice a year so there won’t be enough material for a separate blog. I’ve added an “Astronomy Outreach” category to this blog to accommodate this topic.
It would seem to be a no-brainer for folks doing this sort of thing to keep a real time blog while on the trip. The biggest reason I can see for this not happening is the speed and cost of internet access aboard ship. You start with a high per-minute rate and then find that everything takes a really long time (lots of minutes) when using the ship’s satellite link. Rates start around 50 cents/minute and go down toward 25 cents if you buy large (hundreds of minutes) bundles.
You quickly learn to compose email messages and discussion board posts offline and then log on and send it all in batches. I could compose blog posts in a word processor and cut and paste them onto the blog, I suppose. We’ll see. I’ll have a lot of free time to fiddle with it; enrichment and destination lecturers have the lightest duty (about 45 minutes per at-sea day) of all guest presenters. There’s almost always a bridge lecturer, too (the card game) . They offer tournament play every day so are really never off duty. They do receive the same perks as enrichment speakers so if you are a master that’s another option for you.
One good thing about the junior officer cabins sometimes assigned on Princess – you are in crew territory and within range of the wireless crew internet server. That is far less expensive (the crew bars are also much less expensive!). There’s a vending machine in the crew lounge where you can buy access cards at a good rate. If you are assigned a cabin in passenger territory (which is most of the time on Princess and always with everyone else) you don’t get the magic access card to reach crew areas.