Adobe Lab's project Apollo has officially launched today. It's an interesting project that lies in the realm of creating "Rich Internet Applications", a buzzword I've been seeing a lot lately.
Apollo is essentially a runtime, similar to Flash. What makes this new and different is that the Apollo technologies are focused on bringing web functionality back to the desktop. It tries to solve the online-offline data problem that people currently have with mail, contacts, news, etc. Gmail is a great application, but when I'm offline (on a place, perhaps), I can't write emails in Gmail to send later. If, however, there was a Desktop app that synced with Gmail when you were back online, that would be pretty sweet.
Apollo is a recognition that as wired as we are, and as popular as the web has become, some major functionality and synchronization issues were not addressed in the jump from the Desktop to the web. Some smooth transition apps that allow you to host your data online on central nodes, but then have that data available locally on distributed nodes, would be very nice to have.
Read more about it here.