Chrome gears for my desktop

This content is 15 years old. I don't routinely update old blog posts as they are only intended to represent a view at a particular point in time. Please be warned that the information here may be out of date.

Google Gears logoFor the last week, I’ve only used two browsers on my Windows PC – Internet Explorer 8 beta 2 and Google Chrome beta – and I’ve been really impressed at how these two browsers have shaken up my surfing. There’s plenty of sites on the ‘net comparing the two browsers (so I won’t do that here) but one thing I heard Paul Thurrott discussing with Leo Laporte on Windows Weekly (Episode 73) was the integration of Google Gears into the Chrome browser. I hadn’t realised that Chrome included Gears (although, now I come to think of it, the installation error I experienced when I was installing Chrome referred to Gears) and it is really cool.

Let me give you an example, a few minutes back, I had a power spike at home. The computers stayed on but my ADSL connection was dropped, as was the WiFi connection from my DNS server to the router… I didn’t even notice – I was happily writing a blog post in WordPress through Chrome and it kept on without missing a beat. Only when I tried to surf to some new sites did I realise there was a problem.

Creating a Google Gears application in Google ChromeBut it gets better (credits to Paul Thurrott for pointing this out) – if you click the drop down menu in Chrome with a file icon, you can select to create application shortcuts. This creates a standalone instance of the current page with optional icons on the desktop, quick launch bar or start menu. I now have Gears applications for Google Reader, Google Mail, Google Calendar and WordPress (I’m using the WordPress one to write this post).

Google Reader in a Chrome/Gears application

(The last time I was interested in things like chrome and gears, I was a teenager and the context would have been my bike…)

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