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Google Gears: API to make online applications offline
outrun




msg:3354315
 8:25 am on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

[gearsblog.blogspot.com...]

One of the most frequently requested features for Google's web applications is the ability to use them offline. Unfortunately, today's web browsers lack some fundamental building blocks necessary to make offline web applications a reality. In other words, we found we needed to add a few new gears to the web machinery before we could get our apps to run offline. Gears is a browser extension that we hope -- with time and plenty of input and collaboration from outside of Google -- can make not just our applications but everyone's applications work offline.

The API is available here
[code.google.com...]

 

zulu_dude




msg:3354341
 8:51 am on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

Wow. Could this be the next big step needed to make online applications a feasible alternative for small businesses?

I think this has the potential to be a massive blow to the Office suite. Having said that, Open Office achieves a similar objective (free offline spreadsheet/word processing/etc) and doesn't seem to have dented Microsoft's enthusiasm.

Compworld




msg:3354374
 9:47 am on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

Yea, anyone think about the data they are going to collect and use? Fear Google. They are NOT to be trusted.

wildbest




msg:3354377
 9:56 am on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

Yea, anyone think about the data they are going to collect and use? Fear Google. They are NOT to be trusted.

Yeah, anyone think about the data Microsoft is collecting and using? Who's more trustworthy - G or M?

Compworld




msg:3354442
 11:16 am on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

Microsoft

chronic




msg:3354535
 1:13 pm on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

>> Who's more trustworthy - G or M

The mere posing of the question highlights a growing distrust of Google.

rekitty




msg:3354591
 2:18 pm on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

Yea, anyone think about the data they are going to collect and use?

Google collects no data with the Gears API. It's stored locally on the user's computer. Think of it as having a huge cookie with an embedded SQL database for local access.

I fear Google on the search side, but what they are doing for developers is great. Google is building amazing, innovative technology that is open sourced and community driven. MS should be *very* afraid. I'm going to the Google developer day today and am happy to report back to WebmasterWorld following.

rogerd




msg:3354659
 3:26 pm on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

>>Who's more trustworthy - G or M?

Google knows what to do with the data, Microsoft doesn't. :)

Hard to say at the moment, but this could be a major part of the paradigm shift to making Web apps viable. Few people want to have to stop all work if they don't have a live Internet connection. Network outages still occur, and 99+% of our land mass doesn't have WiFi yet. Having said that, I recently experimented with a Verizon smart phone that let me access the Web directly or connect my laptop to the Web at DSL speed. In a couple of weeks of using it, I didn't find a place where I couldn't connect. So, with wired Internet service backed up by a cell phone connection, using Web apps as primary tools gets less risky and more attractive - even without a "disconnected" use option.

roots




msg:3354715
 4:18 pm on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

Google knows what to do with the data, Microsoft doesn't. :)

ROTFL! This is the best answer I heard, thanks for sharing it.

m0thman




msg:3354776
 5:09 pm on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

Microsoft

Really? In what world?

Out of the two I think I'd be more inclined to trust Google thant Micro$oft

justageek




msg:3354891
 6:20 pm on May 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

Really? In what world?

Out of the two I think I'd be more inclined to trust Google thant Micro$oft

Microsoft for me also. Microsoft could have taken any and all of my info over the years if they wanted it. So by default of being around longer and with a much larger reach than Google they have proven themselves at least a little bit.

The notion of Google being able to produce an offline set of tools that work is years away at best. They are an advertising/marketing company and should stay that way since that is what they do best.

An API for this is the best all those PhDs could come up with? Come on...create something yourselves Google. Something that can compete one on one in the real world of apps and I'll consider it.

JAG

Compworld




msg:3355274
 1:33 am on Jun 1, 2007 (gmt 0)

Microsoft would not do that. It is not them. They may be bullies, but only to their peers. However, Google on the other hand is pure evil. They want to control everything (they even said this). Those maps everyone loves, so much for privacy. Microsoft, Yahoo, IAC, and others need to form a coalition against this common enemy. If not, we are all going to be in trouble. The US DOJ ill do nothing at least until a new administration's is in power. It is all up to the EU.. Geez, that is very scary. If you cannot see it, then you are living on cloud 9. Has anyone ever seen the movie Farenhit 451? Or at least read the book? Remember the Apple 1984 commercial and that evil guy was on the screen. That is now Google. The big difference is Microsoft just wanted to control the OS and computer hardware. Google wants to control world information. BIG DIFFERENCE.

I think I am going to move to Vanuatu or something.

lammert




msg:3355337
 3:31 am on Jun 1, 2007 (gmt 0)

Gears is a browser extension that we hope -- with time and plenty of input and collaboration from outside of Google -- can make not just our applications but everyone's applications work offline.

That sounds like the ideal vehicle for hackers to exploit. A browser add-on running on many computers that allows nearly all sorts of on-line applications running locally. I guess the hard-core hackers are already exploring Google's documtentation to see if it will be useful for them.

Until now there was a strict separation between on-line and off-line code execution with current browser being reasonable able to separate between the two. With the gears add-on that may become more fuzzy. If the gears add-on works like Google promises (running on-line applications off-line) the API should contain hooks to store and retrieve data from the internet, as well as from your local harddisk. Therefore I won't be the first to install it on my computer.

ByronM




msg:3355739
 1:50 pm on Jun 1, 2007 (gmt 0)

I don't trust either but if it came down to the wire just from experience and longetivity Microsoft would be my bet.

Google is to "black box" for its own good.

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