Computers in the Virtual Lab are connected to engineering test equipment like oscilloscopes and function generators. When students log in to these machines over the internet, they are able to control both the computer and the equipment. A video camera can also be used to see what is happening in the physical world. It does not matter if the student is in a nearby dorm room or on the other side of the world.
Remote control and reconfiguration of instrumentation will become an increasingly common event in the workplace. The growth of this paradigm will parallel the increasing use of telecommuting and teleconferencing.