For obvious reasons, people are often assuming that
Google Gears == Offline. To me, this isn’t the case. Gears happens to have three initial APIs (LocalServer, Database, WorkerPool) that can lend themselves to offline work. However, some people are grokking that WorkerPool and even Database are very useful even if your application never goes offline.
Segue: I am really excited to have Brad Neuberg of Dojo, Rojo, and other non-ojo projects fame, working with me at Google. It is a real pleasure to see the group growing, with great new hires such as Joe Gregorio, and others that haven’t made it official yet :)
I was having a chat about Gears with Brad, and he was talking about how he saw it as a way to update the Web in place. He got it.
Let’s use a really corny analogy that breaks down. We get to drive a few makes of cars (browsers) on the (information) highway. When we want new features, we have to wait for a new model to come out, and recently it feels like Cuba. The top selling car is a 1950’s Chevy. As drivers that are passionate about the driving experience, the Gears team is trying give everyone a foundation to replace the engine, even as you drive.
The goal is to give you the foundation. If it happens through other work too (e.g. other manufacturers step up to the plate), we think that is great. We want to make sure that every car on the road has a base platform to keep the highway performing well though, so we are hear to back you all up, and to keep innovation going.
Alex Russell is talking about innovation as he aims to stop us from going into pure standards hell. We are lucky that with HTML 5, we are pushing forward again. The devil is in the details though, and I am waiting to see what cars come out in 2008. If you are left with an old clanger, we are here to help though.
To make this more obvious, I will start posting about some of the exciting APIs that may be coming!