This week, for instance, I taught three 'remote classes' to students living in different time zones - something, that a few years ago, would have been an impossibility.
All we needed to make it all happen was a computer at each end with a camera.
At my end - I use my Apple Mac laptop, all of which come standard with a camera built into the screen and i-chat software. An internet connection completes the picture and we are all good-t0-go. My students, usually with the same kind of set-up, just plonk their computers on the mat where they are ready to go with their training partner. The only pre-requisite for this arrangement to be a success, is that the students must be able to respond well to verbal instructions - and although that sounds easy, it isn't an arrangement that suits everyone. They must also be appreciative of detailed instruction that really helps.
This kind of teaching is actually a little harder than me getting on the mat with the student in person - as it requires an almost endless stream of conversation - fairly taxing after 45 minutes or so. But we get great results - and the fact that people can be trained up technically, despite the hassle of great distances, is really amazing.
Fifteen years ago, if I wanted learn something I didn't know anything about, I had to spend thousands of dollars, getting on a plane and traveling, being away fro work and family to achieve my goals - now, that is no longer an absolute necessity.
technology has really made the world mat - a smaller place.