Google Ditches Gears, Embraces HTML5
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Google Labs has been known for being innovative, and coming up with some outstanding applications, but the lifecycle of a Google project is limited by its usefulness. Such is the fate of Google Gears, which launched four years ago and ended last week with Google's announcement that they will be replacing it with similar technology based on HTML5.
When Gears was announced in 2007, web developers were excited by the possibilities it offered. By maintaining state between web browser sessions, Gears was able to blur the distinction between desktop and cloud computing applications. Gears stored data on the client PC, enabling web-based apps to still be accessible without having to be connected to the internet.
While some developers may see the demise of Gears as a loss, the overal effect is positive. Google is continuing to promote open web standards as an application platform, and enhances the acceptance and standardization of HTML5 with this decision.