Adobe has launched Air, a programme which allows developers to create software tools that allow online applications to retain partial functionality while a computer is offline.
Some online firms have already developed features based on this technology, such as Ebay which has put together software which allows auctions to be set up offline, which will then be posted up automatically when the computer connects to the internet.
“Air is going to allow applications that run on the web today – that run in the browser – to be brought down to the desktop," Andrew Shorten, ‘platform evangelist’ at Adobe said to BBC News. “It's about taking existing web applications and adding extra functionality whether you want to work offline or whether you want to access data on your disk. If I'm on the road with my laptop maybe I want to use the desktop version of my application. If I pop into an internet cafe I can still access it through the browser.”