Over the past few years we have been developing applications for a high-resolution (sub-micron accuracy) fiber optic coupled dual Michelson interferometer-based instrument. It is being utilized in a variety of applications including monitoring liquid layer thickness uniformity on coating hoppers, film base thickness uniformity measurement, digital camera focus assessment, optical cell path length assessment and imager and wafer surface profile mapping. The instrument includes both coherent and non-coherent light sources, custom application dependent optical probes and sample interfaces, a Michelson interferometer, custom electronics, a Pentium-based PC with data acquisition cards and LabWindows CVI or LabView based application specific software. This paper describes the development evolution of this instrument platform and applications highlighting robust instrument design, hardware, software, and user interfaces development. The talk concludes with a discussion of a new high-speed instrument configuration, which can be utilized for high speed surface profiling and as an on-line web thickness gauge.