This may not seem all that interesting at face value but there are a LOT of people in higher education who have workstations that use public IP's.  There is a secure way to connect to your machine remotely, for example if you need to access a set of files that you only want to store on your machine, or you need access to a file from on campus or from home.  Michael Greene talks through the steps in his blog on how to setup your Windows Vista workstation to accept new incoming VPN connections.  This was also available in Windows XP but you have to know where to look in Windows Vista to enable it.