c) Can be implemented with any commercial software that has TCP/IP commands (Perl, VB in Excel, JAVA, MathLab, etc.). In this way data can be imported into powerful analysis software directly from the data collection device.
d) Will work locally or remotely over the Internet. In our spreadsheet example only the single cell showing the host address has to be changed to point the macro to other devices anywhere on the internet.
e) Inexpensive (<$300 for the LabPro or other student model A/D devices).
f) Platform independent. TCP2Serial exists for the three major platforms and in Java. Although at this time the Mac version of Excel does not have all of the TCP/IP tools necessary, there is other commercial software which does.
g) Students have complete control of the experiment. This allows an opportunity to really do some trial and error learning and some troubleshooting.
h) There is the opportunity for new kinds of experiments thus using more of the Internet's potential for collaboration. For example data collection by multiple simultaneous users from a network of multiple sites can easily be set up using this method.