Google Reader Offline Great For Long Flights

I’m sitting on a plane right now. So, unfortunately I’m not able to type this post directly into my wordpress blog. This fact brings to mind a couple thoughts. One thought, which I have every time I fly, is that flying would be so much more enjoyable if I had internet access. I’ve thought for a while that this technology must not be too far off. I’ve been flying JetBlue a lot for the past year and if everyone on the plane can have their own satellite TV, giving everyone internet access must be pretty doable (although certainly there would be a few extra details to take care of). And… lo and behold, I just read and Engadget post about Lufthansa’s plans to provide in-flight broadband by 2008.

At this point, you might have a couple questions for me. What was your second thought? And, wait a minute, how did you just read an Engadget post while on a plane? I’m glad you asked! Just before taking this trip I noticed that Google Reader added an ‘offline’ feature. Given that I had just gotten back into reading blogs and a six hour plane flight is a great time to slog through some feeds, today was a perfect opportunity to try this new feature out.

I’m pretty fascinated by the idea of taking web applications offline and I’m happy to see Google experimenting with this idea. I’m not sure exactly when Google released this feature. It must have been fairly recently because I just watched a video in which Robert Scoble complained about the fact that he wasn’t able to use Google Reader offline. I wonder if the timing of Google Reader’s offline feature was purely a coincidence, or if Scoble’s remark had something to do with it. Scoble is definitely a Google Reader power user.

I’m looking forward to being able to use more and more web applications while in the air, however that becomes possible.

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5 responses to “Google Reader Offline Great For Long Flights

  1. Chris, have you looked into the Google Gears stuff? (That’s the library that the offline reader is built off of.)
    – Tim

  2. I haven’t yet. But I definitely will look into it when I get a chance. Have you?
    – Chris

  3. Meh, just saw what it was, and that it was released. Haven’t tried playing around with it yet. As I understand it, it’s a way to access the embedded DB that’s in Firefox. I’ve read that there are (also) some security issues with it, at least if you’re trying to design a secure site around it.

  4. Cool. Ya, I guess it seems like such an ‘offline’ feature would involve violating a layer of abstraction that the web browser usually provides. In general there are interesting issues with the security of personal information when using web apps [http://www.macworld.com/news/2007/08/01/webwifi/]

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