Steve Jobs and Bill Gates took stage together for the first time in decades at yesterdays conference All things digital, hosted by the Wall Street Journal. Steve and Bill talked about the state of the computing business and they shared thoughts both on the past and the future. Jobs paraphrased their longterm friendship with a line from a song (Two of us) by the Beatles . The big news was the two of them being together onstage once again. But the guys at Google had their minds on the rest of the world and some new gear. And they got most of the blog buzz today.
Google kicked off its developers day conferences in ten cities across the world, gathering an expected total of 5.000 software developers. The news about a new application called Google gears saw daylight first in Sydney, Australia. Google gears is a new application that makes it possible to store and use online content from Google offline. The Google Reader is the first service enabled to operate with the Google gears. The new plug-in is an open source application that also makes it possible for developers to design their own content. A new tool named Google mashup editor was released at the same time. It helps developers to create, test and deploy web applications from within a browser.
Knowing that it is not always easy to stay online, the Google gears fills a gap. The application makes it possible for ordinary users to use Google web sites offline while traveling or whenever not being able to stay online. One of the major downsides of web browsing is that it only “works” while being online. Googles new tool is seen by the industry as a move to take on Microsofts dominance.
The news filled the blogosphere with comments. Bloggers and reporters refer much of their own writings from Googles newly released information in an overall enthusiastic way. ZDNets David Berlind writes that “Google is clearly taking a giant step towards leveling the playing field between locally-run (desktop) and Web-based applications”. (Berlind has also made an interview with Google director of engineering, Linus Upson). Nick O´Neill at the Webbpreneur sums it up when he writes that ” Google gears is a huge step for web applications”. Andy Beal at The Marketing Pilgrim urges Google to make all its applications to work offline! Then he might even stop using his MS Lookout that he finds too slow. Artur Bergman at O´Reilly radar blogged directly from Googles developer day in San Jose. He reported how Google gears will work and about the many trends towards offline applications. But Bergman also writes that little is said about the actual synchronization. “The one missing part of the Google announcement is how we actually sync multiple different local sources to remote data sources”. BBC news technology section covers the launch and ends the article with comments. One is particulary interesting. BBC writes that Jupiter Research analyst Michael Gartenberg is cautious about how much Google will be able to change the game. BBC quotes his blog, Gartenberg writes. “Folks are missing the point – Yes, offline functionality is required but it isn’t in itself a game changer”. John Murrel at Good Morning Silicon valley sums it up and puts the message out in his blogs headline: Gears of war: Google takes the fight offline.
By Anders Bjers and John Furrier