Google Developer Day kicked off today with the announcement of Google Gears, an open source project focused on the development of offline web applications. While the phrase "offline web" may seem like an oxymoron, it speaks directly to the goal of Google Gears, which is to increase access to data and applications even when there is no Internet connection available.
Google's announcement indicates that Google Gears is a browser extension that is being "made available in its early states so that everyone can test its capabilities and limitations and help improve upon it". In addition, Google is proposing that this concept evolve into a "single standard for offline capabilities that all developers can use". Google Reader has already implemented Google Gears and as a result is offering offline capabilities.