Google has decided to stop development of Gears in favor of HTML 5. This is definitely the right move from Google towards standards.
People who do not know what Gears is all about, here is a quick summary. Gears is a browser plug-in with programming APIs to support data storage on the browser without connection to server. It is used by Gmail, Google Reader, and many other applications to provide "offline" capabilities. HTML 5 provides several of these features as part of the standards.
Almost no browser today fully support HTML 5, but the promise of HTML 5 is surely something all of us are looking forward to.