RExLab's pilot project was developed in 1997 and it was called Remote Experimentation Lab. It allowed the user to run a program to the 8051 microcontroler, developed in the RExLab. The project was a Lab to complement the teaching of microcontrolers.
The pilot project was composed by:
- A board containing the 8051 microcontroler and other peripheral components that allowed the communication from the same PC;
- A server program (Lab-Rem-Servidor), that allowed client's informations (Lab-Rem-Cliente), replayed them to 8051 and returned the requested answer to the client;
- A client program (Lab-Rem-Cliente), that loaded the client program binary code, transfered it to server (Lab-Rem-Servidor) to be executed and allowed the user to request the wanted answer.
- A website containing information of how to use the system and allowed the download of the Lab-Rem-Client program.
The student that was studing the microcontroler could, with the Lab-Rem-Client, connect with Lab-Rem-Server, load the program that he/she wanted to test and send it to the server. The server replied the program to 8051, that executed it.
So the user had access to the results (almost all the registrators and intern memory positions from 32 to 127) through the Lab-Rem-Client. Microcontroler students could do pratic experiences with 8051 microcontroler even without the component.
It's important to point out that it was already a real experience, and not a simulation. This lab was quoted and used as an example in the book Programming and Customizing the 8051 Microcontroller (Programming and Customizing Microcontrollers , by Myke Predko.