The role of multicamera machine vision systems for the inspection of complex artifacts and assemblies, as well as the monitoring of manufacturing process, is briefly reviewed. There is a need for a vision system which allows images obtained using several different cameras to be digitized and then described in abstract symbolic terms. The representation of an image in this way enables logical inferences to be made about it, prior to inter-relating it to similar data derived from other cameras and/or the same camera at a different time. A distributed computing system, intended specifically for this type of task, is described in this article. It comprises several standard computers, connected together using a conventional data network. Each of these computers controls dedicated image processing hardware attached to it, using a Prolog program. These are called slaves and are controlled using another computer, termed the master, which provides overall control of all slaves attached to the network. There may be as many as 32 slaves, each one being able to operate up to 32 cameras. A similar network configuration could be used to control a set of image processing sub-systems, each one being implemented in software. A prototype network, incorporating three computers, has been built and demonstrated by the authors, who are now developing a model manufacturing system, with the intention of demonstrating the effectiveness of the network in monitoring and controlling industrial processes.