Offline GMail via Google Gears
I use Thunderbird (current mail client du jour – pine, Evolution, Thunderbird, with maybe a smattering of Pegasus Mail in there for a short span of time) daily. Though I’m tiring of it for my great amounts of personal mail, and have been using GMail, because I can read it on the Web, via Thunderbird, on my phone, or at a public terminal. In fact, GMail rocks so hard, I’m moving more and more of my email to Google’s Hosted Apps service.
Today, Google has made things sweeter – with the announcement of Offline GMail as a Labs feature.
This means I can now use a site-specific browser like Fluid or Prism to read my mail. Because, now its now a real desktop application – even when I’m offline, I can read and reply to emails. This has been a much-requested for feature, for years. Its already enabled in Google Reader (which I use, with a SSB) as well as Google Docs (also, in a SSB for me).
Reminds me of what I used to do successfully over ten years ago on my Palm IIIx PDA (POP had its benefits… IMAP when offline, tends to act weird when brought online – read messages appearing unread, etc. – don’t know if this is a Thunderbird issue, per se)
Unfortunately, none of my GMail accounts have it enabled yet (even the ones with Google Apps hosted domains) :-( Time to wait for yet another killer feature – bringing the cloud to the (portable) desktop.