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SCPI (Standard Commands for Programmable Instruments) is a standard that defines a language for communicating with instruments based on messages. The majority of the GPIB instruments use the SCPI but also RS-232, Ethernet, VXI, PXI may use it. Several measurement instrument manufacturers have adopted this standard as HP / Agilent for example, allowing some communication uniformity between several devices.

Some examples of SCPI commands:

Instrument identification querry: *IDN? Instrument reset: RST Measure querry: MES?
VXI, for VME eXtensions for Instrumentation, is a communication bus originally designed for applications in test and measurement. It is most commonly used in 3U height (10 cm) 6U (23 cm) chassis to connect switch cards, DAQ, DIO, multimeters, controller, GPIB, MXI, USB...