In case you were wondering what Google Gears meant to the planned support for Offline Web Applications in Firefox 3.0, here’s an article you may be interested in. No definitive answers, but does mention the possibility of combining ideas.
Google Gears is pretty cool, but I’d be much more comfortable if Google submitted the API as part of WHATWG and it were standardized. Google Gears would then be the way to use it without a browser having native support. I personally don’t like the idea of competing implementations.