Don Jones has graciously offered to share a slide he uses as part of his Windows PowerShell Fundamentals course (http://www.scriptingtraining.com/ ) which shows the interaction between the pipeline, the out-* and format-* cmdlets. The attached slide illustrates how (sometimes) a picture is worth a thousand words. Don has a great way of explaining complex concepts.
BTW – The slide is a build so run it in presentation mode.
Jeffrey Snover [MSFT]
Windows Management Partner Architect
Visit the Windows PowerShell Team blog at: http://blogs.msdn.com/PowerShell
Visit the Windows PowerShell ScriptCenter at: http://www.microsoft.com/technet/scriptcenter/hubs/msh.mspx
[Edit: Fixed link to scriptingtraining.com]